Indique - Intense Flavors and Alluring Aromas
A perk to living in the nation's capital is being surrounded by an ever-growing culinary landscape. New restaurants are clamoring for a coveted spot and others are revamping their look and menus to freshen up their competitive edge.
Indique falls into the latter category and it does not disappoint. A modern Indian restaurant nestled in Cleveland Park, opened its doors in 2002, and helped redefine Indian cuisine in this city. This two-level eatery, whose name is a melange of India and unique, overhauled its menu, decor and beverage program this year and very much succeeded, thanks to Indique's co-partners Surfy Rahman and Executive Chef K.N. Vinod and Stir Bartending Co.'s beverage consultant, Carlie Steiner.
The aesthetically pleasing space, also recently refurbished, is filled with lively colors - saffron, emerald, turquoise - and is accented beautifully by new art work.
At the helm of the kitchen is the uber-talented, and humble, Executive Chef Vinod. A native of Kerala, Vinod has designed a palate pleasing menu that focuses on dishes from North and South India.
Open for happy hour, dinner and a bottomless weekend brunch, here are some of the tantalizing tasty bites that will leave you wanting more - ranging from street snacks (shrimp puchka shots, chicken seekh kebabs, crab cornetto and vegetable mini dosa) to vegetarian (morel vegetable stew, punjabi chole and masala okra) to classics (aloo gobhi, saag makai paneer and lamb vindaloo) to dishes that are from Chef's hometown (Kerala fish curry, Kerala shepherd's pie and tellicherry peppercorn beef) to dessert (gulab jamun, mustard mango chile caramel sundae and kulfi indian ice cream).
A good cocktail is sometimes hard to find, but you won't have that problem at Indique. You will be able to quench your thirst with innovative libations created by Carlie Steiner of Stir Bartending Co. The Masala gin tonic is refreshing and tastes a like a flower. Perfect for those warmer days. Or if you are longing for a little kick, then I recommend the Tellisherry cocktail, a great blend of sweet and spice.
Words can only describe part of this Indian culinary journey, so for a more complete picture, here are a few photos: