532 Jones Street/O'Farrell,
hearing at High Tide
as I'm calling it. They refer to it as a place to get your Fiery Tandoori
and that is right on. When the smoke from the fire clears the spices ignite
the taste buds. From beginning to end a flavorful meal. The location is
right on the edge....... The atmosphere during the dinner rush is madness.
Jump on any table available and order at the counter. The food can come
fast and just maybe "out of order", Entree, appetizer, rice, who cares.
Bring your own beer if you like. All that we sampled was good. The meat
entrees will raise the bill but I recommend the Tandoori Chops, Eye-Yi-Yi.
That's one tasty barbecued piece of lamb.
that smell? Gunpowder? Firecrackers? No, it's the raging tandoors at
Shalimar, and you can smell them a block away. We did anyway. It was
an assault on the senses. Smoke gushed out the front door, a chaotic
crowd moved in and out, Indian music blared, about 50 Indian guys worked
behind the counter -- shouting and slinging yard-long skewers of meat
in and out of two fiery tandoors. We found a table and let Judge McClure
do the honors of ordering at the counter while Judge Vardigan and I
scored a six-pack at the corner market. BYOB at Shalimar. Chicken, lamb
chops, beef kebab, bread and basmati rice. And oh daddy, was it tasty.
'Bout burned my white mouth off, but I couldn't stop eating. I eats
mo' chicken any man ever seen. I am, a tandoor man.
frankly, I've had better tandoori chicken and bread (naan and/or kulcha)
but those chops were RIGHT ON and the rice was fine. Vegetarians are
welcome there too. It's definitely an experience, and if you're careful
you can eat like a Brahmin but pay like an Untouchable. You might consider
getting it to go if a smoky, loud, chaotic freakout is not your scene.
Chaos. That's what they could call this restaurant. I thought the smell
from a block away was that of snakes, those cheap, charry legal fireworks
that always stain the curb. Turns out, everything at Shalimar WAS charred
-- to delicious perfection, in its deep, tandoor ovens. The chops, drawn
from the pits of the ovens with smoke streaming off them -- oh man. And
the tandoori chicken was hardcore -- I watched them drag it off those
long skewers and plop it on the plate, no extra sauce or "dressing up"
needed. Just chicken on a plate. And it better stand on its own, 'cause
you aren't likely to get your dishes in any kind of logical order -- our
rice came last. But that chicken was great, especially the pieces still
on the bone.
Go grab a table right away if you see one, and worry about ordering later.
You have to go up to the counter anyway. And bring your own beer. No easing
up on the uninitiated, either -- everything had a helluva spice to it.
By the end, Judge Turner was blowing his nose profusely. If you don't
like a smoky restaurant, don't come to Shalimar, which looked like the
aftermath of a fireworks display, thanks to those incredible ovens. Walls
of smoke hanging in the air. We saw a group of people walk in and turn
around, waving their hands in front of their faces. Some people are weak.
And those people miss great meals.