Kunming Garden (Islamic Restaurant), a Indian/ Yunnan Cuisine

26, Lane 81, FuXing N. Rd.
(02) 2751 -6776
Hours: 11:30 am-2 pm; 5 pm-9:30 pm

Tired of Western food for your weekend treat? Then try Kunming Garden, introduced here as a nice alternative. Kunming Garden is located in a quiet alley with no fancy decorations and has been around for the past six years. The owner, Mr. Ma, is Yunnanese but was born in Myanmar. With Mr. Ma's excellent communication skill and great service manners, many foreigners and business people were attracted to his Kunming Garden. Business lunch is served on weekdays from 11:30 a.m.-2 p.m. A variety of business lunches are provided to serve a busy workers. These include as Curry Chicken Rice, with courses normally including naan and Indian milk tea. There is Indian Vegetarian Dumplings (NT$160), Stir-fry Lotus Seeds (NT$180)and Curry Beans (NT$180). Main courses such as Tian Du Li BBQ Chicken and Turkish Eggplant Mixed Beef (NT$240) are two most popular dishes in Kunming Garden. --By Echo Tsai, translated by Erika Jean

Cafe India

30, KoQiang Rd. (Near TianMu Swimming Pool)
(02) 2837-7365
Hours:11 am-2:30 pm; 5-11 pm
Credit cards accepted

Taipei's newest Indian restaurant, Cafe India, is a hit. Owner and 25-year veteran chef Pravin Kapoor brought in two five-star chefs from India, imports all spices, makes the yoghurt on site, and insists on attention to detail and fine service. Cafe India could just as well be called "The House of Naan," as it features 15 to 20 different types of that tasty flat cake. Not the adventurous type myself, I found the Garlic Naan to be a superb compliment to my Murgh Patilala dish. It's a vicious rumor that all Indian food is spicy. The food is as spicy as you like, or as mild. Take the above mentioned Murgh Patilala (NT$320), a tender boneless chicken with tomato, capsicum and mustard seeds in a thick dry gravy. It is mild, full of flavor, and leaves you wanting more. Dinner orders can be placed up to midnight. Saturday and Sunday Lunch Buffets (NT$400) include 16 different dishes and a free drink. Catering and home delivery are offered. --By Joe Duffer, translated by Echo Tsai

Ali Baba's Indian Kitchen

56-58, NanJing E. Rd.,
Sec. 2, 2F
(02) 2567-7163
Hours:11:30 am-2:30 pm, 6 pm-11 pm
Credit cards accepted; 10% service charge

Seven year ago, Muhammad Ali of Pakistan began a grill stand at a night market. It wasn't long before he started Ali Baba's Indian Kitchen. Within a few years, the restaurant built up a reputation in Taipei's Indian and Middle Eastern communities. Ali's Taiwanese wife has helped him tailor dishes to suit the Taiwanese palate. On his new menu, he provides pictures of the dishes for customers less familiar with Indian cuisine. Ali recommends the following: Masala Papadam (NT$100), spice lentil wafers fried and served with chopped onions tomatoes; Mutton Vindaloos (NT$290), highly spiced lamb cooked with potatoes; and Vegetable Makhanwala (NT$220), mixed vegetables cooked in butter sauce. Indian naan bread is versatile, and even the simple Garlic Naan (NT$80), bread pasted with garlic and butter, tastes great either with dip or as a side dish. The recently introduced Camb Chop (NT$450)--tender lamb's chop marinated in yogurt and spices--uses a special secret marinate and is chargrilled in a traditional oven to make the meat tender and flavorful. This dish is suitable for two people or more. In all, more than 100 dishes are available. --By Josie Wu, translated by Yvonne Chen

Tandoor Indian Restaurant

10, Lane 73,
HeJiang St.
(02) 2509-9853 / 2505-4870
Hours:12 am-2:30 pm, 6 pm-10:30 pm
Credit cards accepted;
10% service charge

Tandoor Indian Restaurant is a well-established restaurant popular among locals for its tasty, authentic flavors, prepared by Bombay native Raju Relwanidly with the finest quality spices and ingredients. Just as good, the restaurant's prices have not risen at all over the past eight years, so that Tandoor provides some of the best value in town. As part of his insistence on maintaining authenticity, Raju personally went to India to find a fantastic chef for his restaurant. The restaurateur/businessman also imports all of the restaurant's spices and ingredients from his mother country. Manager Miss Xiao recommends the Chicken Tandoori for first-time customers (full NT$440, half NT$220). This dish is very popular with Taiwanese customers. She also understands what Tandoor's many foreign patrons enjoy, such as the very popular Chicken Tikka Masala. This dish consists of chicken legs with special spices slowly stewed with tomatoes and other delectable vegetables. Another plus is the fact that Tandoor is the sole agent for Indian Kingfisher Beer, so come in and knock one back with some great Indian cooking. --By Josie Wu, translated by Druetzler David