Budget Beat: Paprika Indian Gourmet

One step into this richly hued Lincoln Square BYO and the mellow aroma of Indian spices mingled with soft sitar music guarantees instant warmth. So does the friendly owner, Shah Kabir, who welcomes customers while his family keeps watch over the curries and vindaloos. “We all love to cook,” Shah says, “and to spend our time together in the kitchen.” The result is fresh and homey, as the impossibly delicate veggie samosa proves. For contrast, try onion bhaji, crunchy fritters that offer pure deep-fried joy. Food is cooked to order, so don’t plan on curry in a hurry—bide your time nibbling complimentary pappadam with a round of chutneys. Entrées include a slew of vegetarian options, from a thick, sultry eggplant and spinach duo to a near-lethal multivegetable vindaloo (each $8.95). A spirited salmon tikka kebab ($11.95), strewn with tomato chunks and onion strips, offers non-veg temptation, as does a smoky paprika chicken ($12.95). Rice accompanies, but the naans and parathas are fab. And be sure to save room for kheer, a dreamy rice pudding studded with raisins, almonds, and pistachios that the Greek men playing backgammon at the coffeehouse next door should slip in to try. 2547A W. Lawrence Ave.; 773-338-4906.

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6 months ago
Posted by RK

If I had an option to give this restaurant zero (no stars), I would.

I have no idea what the food tastes like but I can offer my opinion that their service is horrible.

I placed an order 2 hours ago. When I placed the order, I was told to expect delivery in 40 minutes. After waiting for 50 minutes, I called the restaurant. A woman answered. She said the driver left 10 minutes ago and I should expect my food in a few minutes. After waiting another 20 minutes (over an hour after I placed the order), I called back again. I spoke to a man. He said that the delivery guy just left 10 minutes ago and he should be there any minute. He claimed he had no idea who I spoke with during my earlier call and he had no way of contacting the delivery person and giving me a more accurate estimate. (Really? Ever heard of cell phones?) At an hour and 40 minutes, I called the restaurant again and asked to speak to a manager. I was told the manager was too busy to talk to me but I could leave a number and he would call me back. I insisted and was put on hold for about 20 minutes. I never did get to speak to a manager but when someone finally came back on the line, I told them to cancel the order and wished them a Happy New Year.

Obviously this business does not care about customers. Seriously. If your delivery time is 2 hours, just be honest. I wouldn't have canceled the order if they had just been up front. But lying to your customers is not a good idea. Not to mention a manager who would rather put a customer on hold for 20 minutes, hoping they'll just give up and hang up, than getting on the line to accept responsibility for the restaurant's mistake.

Bottom line, if you don't want to starve, go elsewhere. We did. Ordered sushi from Fin. It was delicious.

We'll be going to Tiffin on Devon (less than half hour delivery time on average) for delicious Indian food and, more importantly, honesty.

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