My momma was in town this weekend to see me perform this weekend. She found a hotel in Midtown East, and after getting to the hotel apparently, before her check-in time we were giving multiple pamphlets and such of things to do in the area (but why use pamphlets when you have your own personal, free tour guide?). The one packet that we did use was the list of restaurants in the area (it was just after my normal lunch time and I was hungry). Going through the packet was difficult because It was broken into sections by cuisines—American, steakhouses, French, Mexican, Asian, and more—because it was several cuisines that are not traditionally vegan-friendly—American, fried and greasy; steakhouses, steak; French, butter and duck fat; Chinese, animal products and eggs. They did have two Indian restaurants on the list, though. Indian is pretty vegan-friendly, but I had to check the menu on their websites to see how vegan-friendly they actually are, and Darbar had more options so should have more vegan-friendly dishes.
Walking in Darbar (152 E 46th St, New York, NY 10017), I felt like I walked into an Indian place that had been to when I was in Prague last semester (yes, there are Indian restaurants in Slavic countries doing traditional Indian cuisine), so I was excited to eat there. After looking up and down the menu and checking out the buffet options, I had narrowed down my choices to a few but completely disregarded the menu options after talking to the waiter. I ordered a mixed vegetable curry with basmati rice and a vegan “naan” (it has a different name, but I do not remember the name).
It was by far the best experience I have ever had with Indian food in my life (I can make these bold statements because I have had traditional Indian food maybe three times now). It was a most delectable curry; it had a stronger kick to it than I had expected but it was so great! There was carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, peas, chickpeas, corn, green beans and more veggies (I was surprised by the presence of corn in it because I am pretty sure corn is not a vegetable naturally found in India, but I really do not know much about Indian agriculture), with tofu (who does not like the surprise presence of tofu in a dish?). The “naan” was great because it helped counter the spiciness of the curry. Overall, it was a great meal and now I have a restaurant I can recommend and/or take vegan and non-vegan friends to an Indian place in Midtown if need be.