Optimistically Cautious

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Have coupon, will try: Maurya Palace

After a day of intense shopping at West Edmonton Mall, May and I were itching to escape the masses for dinner. In the car, we shuffled through my stash of coupons, and selected Maurya Palace (9266 34 Avenue) from the pile.

We drove out to "Little India", and found the restaurant, located in a strip mall amongst fabric shops, insurance brokers, and other ethnic eateries. Upon entry, we were told by the one waitress on duty to select any table. There were only four other tables occupied, and it seemed the buffet was the draw on that night, though we requested menus just in case.

The dining room was quite dim, but other than that, nothing much of note stood out. The beaded table runners were a nice touch, but besides a few gold-toned mirrors on the walls and a welcoming statue of a deity by the door, the decor was very much muted when compared with places like New Asian Village.

Before deciding on our entrees, we took a quick look at the buffet. But as it was already past 8pm, and the food very much appeared to be past its prime, we decided to order two dishes to share instead. Butter Chicken ($11.95) was selected without hesitation, and the Lamb Bahaar (tender lamb cubes cooked with onions, tomatoes, bell peppers, herbs & spices in a thick sauce; $13.95), advertised as a Chef's Special, was our second pick. An order of nan bread ($1.50) and basmati rice ($2.25) completed our meal.

The food arrived promptly, and we dug in right away. The butter chicken was great - rich and creamy, the heat level was mild, as we had asked for. The lamb on the other hand, was a bit too spicy for our taste, and the "sauce" seemed to be mainly composed of oil; though to be fair, our palettes may not have been accustomed to the flavours of this dish. The nan bread was good, but I was hoping for more than the two pieces in our basket.

With my coupon, we ended up splitting a cheque amounting to less than $20 before tip. Great deal, decent food, but given the choice, I'd be inclined to head over to the buffet at New Asian Village instead, if not only for the access to unlimited nan.

Nan Bread, Butter Chicken and Lamb Bahaar (and a bottle of wine that happened to get in the shot)

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