Friday, November 22, 2013

Spice Symphony

Paneer chili, Spice Symphony

A few months ago we tried to eat at Spice Symphony, only to be politely turned away for lack of a reservation. We had no such difficulties in October. By then, Ligaya Mishan's glowing Hungry City review in the Times had been out for a while, and folks had perhaps moved onto her more recent favorites, such as Skal.

The paneer chili (top) might have been a main --- all it needed was a side of rice or bread to soak up the sticky sweet sauce, made from chiles and ginger. The chunks of cheese stayed firm, the scallions provided bite. Of everything we ate, this appetizer best showcased the restaurant's dual focus on Chinese and Indian food.

Spinach chaat, Spice Symphony

The spinach chaat (above) fell more decidedly on the Indian side of things, while the tellicherri pepper chicken (below) again revealed the kitchen's deftness with mixing and matching flavors and preparations. According to Mishan, the head chef calls his rustic style "grandmotherly cooking." Whatever you call it --- fusion, unrefined, inherited, a little of this, a little of that --- it works.     

Tellicherri pepper chicken, Spice Symphony

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