Philly's growing Indian scene gets an upscale venue from Heather and Rakesh Ramola, whose new Center City branch of their popular Collingswood restaurant is a shimmery gold- and plum-colored space with cardamom-scented cocktails and live sitar music for the 13th Street district. This menu offers more fusion options for the younger crowd, and it's fun when it works. Some inconsistencies and small portions, though, can make a meal here feel overpriced on an off night. The live music every Tuesday is a plus.
Crispy spinach chaat; dahi avocado chaat; rasam scallops; paneer-stuffed long hots; lamb chops; reshmi kabob; basil mint kabob; shrimp with red pepper coconut curry; naan pizza; crispy vegetable chili; seafood moilee; lamb biryani; paneer tikka makhani; chana masala; baingan bharta; lamb rogan josh; vegetarian lunch thali; whole wheat roti; mango panna cotta; fig duo.
A modest but well-rounded list with spice-friendly wines (Riesling, Albariño, Carmenère), though markups are high. The beer list is crafty and Indian-centric (Sixpoint Bengali Tiger, Ayinger bräu-weisse, Kingfisher), but the selection is small. The cocktails have appealing Indian accents (i.e. chile peppers and cardamom syrups), but could use better craftsmanship.
Can be a noisy 93 decibels, but the live sitar-tabla duo on Tuesdays manages not to crimp conversation. (Ideal is 75 decibels or less.)
Lunch: 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Monday-Saturday. Dinner: 4:30-11 p.m. Monday-Thursday, until midnight Friday and Saturday, and until 9 p.m. Sunday. Sunday brunch: 10:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.