Of all the Indian restaurants in Dallas, the Claypit in Addision, (literal translation of the Tandoor) is my family's favorite. Given that my wife is an extraordinary Indian cook, we hardly eat Indian food outside, and look for variety from other parts of the world.
We make an exception on special occasions to dine out at the Claypit since it is arguably, the only restaurant in Dallas serving extraordinary Nouvelle Indian Cuisine in a classy yet friendly ambiance, with superb customer service and an incredible attention to detail by the owners - Jo and Renu Saini who run the Dallas establishment and Tinku, their chef-de-cuisine brother who runs the Claypit in Austin.
Why do I keep going back for more?
The Claypit opened its very first restaurant in Austin which had some of my foodie friends drive all the way from Dallas to Austin (a 4 hour drive), every other weekend to partake of their offerings! I frankly thought these guys were nuts until I discovered the Pavlovian delights offered by the Claypit for myself, once they opened a second establishment in Dallas!
The food is authentic yet non-greasy, spiced just right, yet embellished with a coup-de-main and that secret ingredient(s) that renders this oh, so, delightful and so different, from the conventional fare you find ad nauseum at most Indian restaurants.
This is a place where we celebrate our anniversaries, my daughter's birthday or special occasions and also take our friends and business associates from out of town or, from foreign lands, if they have an urge for authentic, high quality Indian food. The good news is that my friends, my family or I have never been disappointed with our dining experience!
The Claypit is constantly innovating and offers a tantalizing array of delicacies to choose from, but here are my perennial favorites:
- The Mixed Grill comprising all the house kabab specialities is a great place to start
- The Mulligatawny Soup dating back to colonial India, is well done and a personal favorite
- The Grilled Rack of Lamb in my opinion, is the finest lamb off the tandoor that I have had, anywhere in the world, and I have legions of friends and business associates who strongly agree with me!
- The Kothmir Salmon (grilled salmon with a cilantro spice garnish) and grilled veggies on the side, is great for health food freaks. Andy's tip - ask for the mango chutney on the side to go with this - makes all the diffrence in the world!
- The Goat Curry is sublime especially if well done, and goes extremely well with both naan/paratha and the house pilaf that is served with most entrees
- The Mango Chicken Curry and the Mango Glazed Duck are both intriguing and are targets for my next culinary adventure
- The seafood specialties in addtion to the Kothmir Salmon, are the haibut or mahi-mahi cooked in a South-Indian style sauce with a Goan touch to it that I greatly appreciate - you probably have to ask for this
- The paneer dishes, the dal makhani and the sauteed eggplant are all worth trying off the vegetarian menu
- The Chicken or Lamb Biryani (almost like a Dum Biryani) and the Garlic and Basil Naan are perennial favorites. You can also order an assortment of all the naans and stuffed parathas that lends a touch of adventure to the meal
- Desserts are a house differentiator and in addition to the traditional rasmalai, gulab jamun and kheer (really good), I am blown away by the Spiced Rum Kulfi, the Chai-Spiced Creme Brulee and the Mango Cheesecake that you will be hardpressed to find elsewhere!
- The Claypit also serves a fine collection of wines and cocktails from all over the world, including some of the finest Shirazes from Australia, but I recommend not leaving the restaurant without having sipped some of their House Mango Lemonade - the closest thing to "Amrit (the nectar of immortality)" I tell you!
Do let me know whether your culinary experience at the Claypit is as good as mine!
This adventure in Addision, Texas begins at: Claypit Contemporary Indian Restaurant, 4460 Belt Line Rd, Addison, TX 75001. Tel # (972) 233-0111. Click here for the Google Map and Directions.
I enjoyed reading your blog. Very informative and entertaining! Your passion for food, specially fine cuisine is apparent. Now all you need to do is invite us to check out your culinary skills :-)
Seriously, you should be a food editor for a food magazine or have your own show on Food TV. March 3, 2007 8:06 PM
Dude, Given that I was one of the guys who used to go all the way to Austin to eat at Claypit before it opened in Dallas, I can really appreciate your blog.
Laage raho, Andybhai!! February 10, 2007 8:18 PM
Andy, Great blog site that I will visit again and again.
If you can put the location , address & phone number for those restaurants, it will easier for others to call to find the place. Take care. Subhasisda Fri 2/9/2007 9:12 AM