Lala Sahab, modern Indian on the Upper West Side, NYC

Please note that the meal was complimentary. However, the opinions expressed in my blog are 100% my own! 

Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Meaning Sir Lala, Lala Sahab is the new venture of Executive Chef and owner Lala Sahab that I met few months ago at Surya, where he not only treated us with a sublime meal, but also made a demonstration of the use of the tandoor oven.

Executive Chef Lala Sharma at Surya in NYC, New York

Executive Chef Lala Sharma at Surya in NYC, New York

So, needless to say that I was really excited to go to Lala Sahab. There, Chef Sharma crafted a modern menu influenced by Northern Indian food and organized in few categories of small plates perfect for sharing: Mumbai Bites, Bhatti Se (from the Tandoor) and Choolah Se (from the pan), served in a decor with warm colors, a nod to Indian spices and cultural history.

Dining room at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Dining room at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Dining room at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Dining room at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Bar at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Bar at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Back dining room at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Back dining room at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

If you are a beer drinker, you can get some draft beers from local producers or the famous Indian beer, Kingfisher. I like beer, but, with Indian food, I prefer a mango lassi and the one I got was perfectly made: not too sweet and not watery at all, with a delicious mango taste.

Mango lassi at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Mango lassi at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Mango lassi at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Mango lassi at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

We then got some papadum with mint and tamarind sauces before our dishes came, like having an apéro (the name given in France of the time before a meal when beverages are drunk with few snacks such a peanuts, olives or crackers).

Papadum at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Papadum at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

The first dish to come was a sampler of two: a vegetable samosa and a tikka-wale samosa. The former is fairly common, but I admit that it was the first time I tried a chicken tikka samosa, more accustomed to see lamb whenever a non-vegetable samosa was proposed. And I loved both of them: these turnovers were delightfully crispy and very tasty, not spicy, and delicious with either the tamarind or mint sauces served with the papadum, or with the makhni sauce that came with the plate, another twist I guess on a classic Indian dish.

Samosa with Makhni sauce at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Samosa with Makhni sauce at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Chicken samosa at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Chicken samosa at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Vegetable samosa at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Vegetable samosa at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

The second appetizer was the Dahi Batata Poori, that is masala Chickpeas and crisps topped with yogurt, mint and tamarind. I love this kind of dish that has a sweet and savory taste, the yogurt adding a refreshing taste.

Dahi batata poori at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Dahi batata poori at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Dahi batata poori at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Dahi batata poori at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Then came Lala's Chaap, lamb chops marinated in Indian spices, red wine and herbs. I was definitely looking forward to try this dish as the lamb at Surya was sublime and I was not disappointed: it was tender, perfectly cooked medium and had a nice kick to it.

Lala's chaap at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Lala's chaap at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Then came the entrées. 

Entrees at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Entrees at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

There was:

Saag paneer that is creamy spinach cooked with cottage cheese (paneer):

Saag paneer at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Saag paneer at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Sahab Ji’s Dal, a dish made with black lentils simmered on slow fire overnight and tempered with cumin and ginger:

Dal at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Dal at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Dal at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Dal at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Butter Chicken made with roasted chicken in a tomato and fenugreek sauce:

Butter chicken at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Butter chicken at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

These dishes were really good, my favorite being the butter chicken. It was even better with the poori that is a whole-wheat puffed bread, that was nicely crispy and delightfully greasy, or with rice.

Poori at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Poori at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Rice at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Rice at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Last was dessert and we got to try two of our favorites! First was gulab jamun, these milk-balls that are fried and dipped in a sweet syrup.

Gulab jamun at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Gulab jamun at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

The second was kheer that is rice pudding.

Kheer at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Kheer at Lala Sahab in NYC, New York

Both desserts were fantastic and a perfect way to finish a delicious meal. I was definitely not disappointed with Lala Sahab: it is a great place to eat Indian food and it will not be the last time I would go there!

Enjoy (I did)!

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Lala Sahab Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato