Yesterday Wendy and I walked all the way from Pentagon City to Old Town, Alexandria. It was a pretty walk, but rather exhausting (more than 1.5 hours!). Once we reached Old Town, food was the only thing on our minds.
We decided to try Taj Palace. At 5:30 pm, there were only two other people at the restaurant, not counting us. The place was pretty and fancy looking with white tablecloths, dark colored walls and ornamental decorations.
We ordered vegetable samosas (traditional crispy and flaky patties stuffed with potatoes and green peas) and paneer kulcha (fine flour bread stuffed with homemade farmer's cheese) as appetizers. The appetizers came with two sauces, but no spoons for those sauces. Okay, minor problem.
The samosas were flaky, hot and flavorful. The bread was a bit on dry side.
For the main entree, I ordered Dal Gosht (boneless pieces of lamb cooked in a lentils based sauce) and Wendy ordered Mumtaz Thali (saag alloo, dal tarka, mixed vegetables, channa masala, bamatti rice, tandoori roti, raita and dessert of your choice). The waiter asked if I wanted rice with my food. Seriously!? For $17.95 I don't even get rice? How expensive can it be? I declined the offer.
The presentation of the food was fun: mine came in a tall copper vessel and a copper spoon. Wendy's food came in what looked like a metal TV tray. The lamb was a bit on a salty side (maybe I really should have ordered that rice). Wendy enjoyed her food, especially the spinach and lentil dishes.
We then received the check. But wait! Wendy's entree came with dessert, but our waiter did not mention anything about it. So, we asked about the dessert. There were only 3 options: chocolate icecream, vanilla icecream, and some sort of a spongy sweet Indian dishes. I was disappointed with the selection, even though I wasn't going to have any of it. What happened to the mango icecream? Wendy chose chocolate icecream.
For the price, I think the food was not all that! And the service could have been a bit more upbeat given there were only two dining parties (2 people each!).
I'm just glad I'm going to Rasika for Restaurant Week on Wednesday: cannot wait!
P.S. sorry for the lack of pictures, forgot my camera at home.