When you work in the IT industry, chances are you’ve made yourself a few Indian friends. I’m lucky enough to have one in the person of Bharat, a functional consultant who I’ve had the pleasure of working with for a system implementation project. One thing I’ve noticed about the Indians I’ve worked with is that they’re very eager to share things about India, their culture, the places, and their food! Bharat has been taking myself and some other people on the team to different Indian restaurants. We’ve tried Kashmir and Queens of Bollywood. Yesterday, we got a chance to try RICH which stands for Royal Indian Curry House. He’s been telling us that it’s the best Indian restaurant he’s eaten at here in Manila. And after our lunch yesterday, I can only agree. IT WAS SO GOOD!
Sharing with you the things we ordered –
Now we go top to bottom, left to right.
We started off our meal with Masala Papad (P149). It’s this thin wheat tortilla topped with onions, tomatoes, cilantro, and spices. Think your Pancake House Taco, a really thin one, but without meat, cheese, or lettuce. Had this both at Kashmir and Queens of Bollywood but RICH has the best one yet! The next 3 are all appetizers. Sa totoo lang appetizers pa lang, busog na kami! Haha! Left-most on the second row is called Papdi Chaat (P259). Bharath calls it their version of nachos. It’s tortilla chips, like the Taquitos chips but this time, fatter, swimming in a mixture of yogurt, mint chutney, spices, and I think tamarind chutney. The taste is very refreshing. Out of all the new dishes I tried yesterday, this one is my favorite! It’s perfect for cleansing the palette and I highly recommend it when you’re getting plenty of dishes that lets you taste so many flavors. The next appetizer is Paneer Pakoda (P399) which is fried cottage cheese. Not a fan of this one. It’s like fried tofu and is very filling so if you’re still going through some main dishes after it, best to limit the serving to not more than 2 pieces. The last appetizer is a personal favorite which I always request for – Chicken 65 (P279)! My preference started when Sudha (another Indian friend of mine who works with Bharat) ordered some of it for lunch from an Indian home-cooked food delivery service. It’s fried bite-sized chicken tossed in spices. I must say the best one I’ve tried is from the delivery service hehe. RICH would rank second-best for this dish. I like pairing it with rice, gravy, and a lot of mint chutner which I think Bharat finds unusual because he likes keeping a fence between appetizers and main meals haha.
Off to the main dishes!
First off, the Vegetable Kofta (P389). The description of the dish says “vegetable dumplings finished in mild gravy”. Indians looove their gravy which comes in different forms that I have yet to wrap my mind around (and probably will never will haha). There’s tomato-based ones, some they call masala gravy, some onion gravy, and so on and so forth. This one has vegetables in it because Bharath is vegan. The gravy is terrific paired with Chicken 65 hahaha! We also ordered the Prawn Curry (P599). The prawns they use at RICH are huge that the price was reasonable. My food vocabulary is too much of a newbie to describe what my tongue tasted but trust me that if you like flavorful stuff, this one is for you.
We Filipinos love our rice and so do Indians, but a more popular option for them is bread. Sometimes I’ve observed that they eat both bread and rice with their viands. #CarbsIsLife #Gains haha. We ordered Butter Tandoori Roti (P109) and Butter Naan (P149) to pair with the Kofta and Curry. Well my companions ordered them, I actually ordered the Jeera Rice (P219) because I like rice haha! I still ended up getting some of the Butter Naan though. It was yummy! It’s flour-based and has a sweet buttery flavor so it was good with the salty and spicy flavors in our main dishes. Meanwhile, the Roti is wheat based. A healthier and heavier option. Jeera Rice meanwhile is rice cooked with cumin. I didn’t find it special, I could tell it wasn’t plain but it wasn’t phenomenal. The serving could easily be shared by 2 or maybe 3 people so best to find people who will eat this with you.
We ended our meal with the Cassata. It’s ice cream that has bits of gelatin and nuts in it. Bharat said it usually has dried fruits and is not as frozen as what was given to us. It was so-so but sadly, I still haven’t found an Indian dessert that I really like. I’ve had Gulab Jamun which are rice cakes, Carrot Halwa which is like shaved cooked carrots mixed with coconut milk and served with ice cream, Falooda which is like their version of halo-halo, then Cassata. None has enthusiastically agreed with me so far. 😦 To be fair, I’m not a fan of Filipino desserts either. But hey, I’m open to try some more.
Add in 2 cokes (at a steep P99/can) and our bill totaled almost P4,900. We were 4 in the group and I’m the only girl so that says something about the eating capacity present in the table haha! We could have easily shared this with 2 more people and everyone would have still left with bulging tummies. I’d say with our satisfaction, it’s a valid price to pay.
RICH is located at 5345 General Luna Street in Poblacion. It’s near Gramercy or A Venue. Do drop by when you’re in the area or are craving for Indian food. I promise you it’s good!
‘ Til my next Indian food adventure,