Revisit: Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

 Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

We were going for dinner with some of my colleagues and, as some of them are from India, I proposed to go to an Indian restaurant, to get their opinion about it. Mint came immediately in mind. The first time I discovered it was for a press dinner, back in November 2012 (check the review of Mint here). I remember that I loved the food and that the reviews of my fellow bloggers, especially Malini from the Restaurant Fairy, who is from India, were really good.

 Bar at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Bar at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Prepared by Chef Gary Sikka, the food was delicious and, according to my Indian friends, fairly authentic. The only negative that day was the private room, that, can hardly accommodate the 10 guests they advertised...But hey, the food made us forget that. At Mint, they offer a large menu that would satisfy the vegetarian as well as the non-vegetarian with so many mouth watering dishes that it is hard to choose. We decided to share several dishes and I definitely missed some as far as photos were concerned... For appetizers, we got:

Vegetable samosas, made with potatoes and peas. They were heavenly, crispy and not spicy, but smaller than what I am used to. I really liked eating them with the tamarind sauce that added a nice sweetness.

 Vegetable samosas at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Vegetable samosas at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Papri chat, a snack that I understand is normally street food. It is crispy fried dough wafers and potatoes topped with chutney and spices. Well, you know what we say: everything fried is good; this definitely was...

 Papri chat at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Papri chat at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Jhinga Balchao, or shrimp in a spicy pickled sauce, a specialty from Goa. This is the kind of spicy dish that you cannot stop eating, even if your mouth is on fire. 

 Jhinga Balchao at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Jhinga Balchao at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Then was the long awaited chilly fish or spicy fish tossed in bell pepper, herbs and spices. This is the dish that I still remembered from the first time I went to Mint. But, this time, it was not crispy. Don't get me wrong: it was still delicious, had a nice spiciness, and is a dish I definitely recommend.

 Chilly fish at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Chilly fish at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Then we went for the tandoor specialties. We ordered the paneer shashlik or cubes of paneer skewered with bell peppers and cooked in the tandoor oven. I was wondering how it would be, especially after I tried paneer in Delhi, at Bukhara, a dish that I wish I could find here in the US. At Mint, the paneer was pretty good, although not the same as the one I tried in India.

 Paneer shashlik at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Paneer shashlik at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

The second tandoor dish was the fish tikka, that was marinated in yogurt and spices. Another great dish.

 Tandoor fish tikka at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Tandoor fish tikka at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

We then tried few vegetarian dishes. The first one was the Diwan-e-Handi or assorted vegetables, paneer, baby eggplant, cooked in coconut, herbs and spices. It was good, although not my favorite dish.

 Diwan-e-handi at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Diwan-e-handi at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

The next one was Malai Kofta, that are paneer dumplings in a rich cashew sauce. I was familiar with this dish that I really like, especially the creamy sauce.

But the best vegetarian dish was for me the Dal Makhni, a traditional Punjabi preparation of black lentil simmered overnight on a slow fire with onion and garlic.

 Dal Makhni at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Dal Makhni at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

I could have eaten the entire bowl of it, loving its richness and creaminess, perfect with the different naan breads we ordered or pulao rice.

 Naan bread at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Naan bread at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

 Rice pulao at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Rice pulao at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

For the non-vegetarian dishes, we got:

Chicken Tikka Masala, that are cubes of tandoori chicken cooked in a fenugreek flavored tomato sauce. This is my benchmark dish for Indian restaurants: if I like it, it is a good sign...And I loved it.

 Chicken tikka masala at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Chicken tikka masala at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Chicken Jalfrezi or cubes of chicken cooked in a delightful spiced onion and tomato curry, combined with pieces of fresh tomatoes, onions and bell peppers, served with lemon rice. I'll be honest: I do not remember this one...I might have missed it with all the dishes we had!

Lamb Shahi Pasanda, a lamb cooked in a mild cashew sauce, a Kashmir specialty. Between the delicious taste of the lamb and the sublime creamy sauce, I was in heaven.

 Lamb shahi pasanda at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Lamb shahi pasanda at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Malabar Shrimp, shrimp cooked with coconut milk and spices. A great dish with perfectly cooked shrimp and a very tasty and creamy sauce.

 Malabar shrimp at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Malabar shrimp at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

I should mention that I drank a mango lassi that was perfect whenever the food was too spicy, that was in fact only restricted to couple of dishes.

 Mango lassi at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Mango lassi at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Last was of course dessert. I went for my favorite: the gulab jamun, these milk balls that are deep fried and bathed in a sugary syrup. They were good, but I wish there was more syrup in it.

 Gulab Jamun at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

Gulab Jamun at Mint, Indian restaurant in Midtown East, NYC, New York

This was a great dinner at Mint: the food was good, as was the company. I would certainly go back for some more delicious Indian specialties.

Enjoy (I did)!

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