Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Mehmaan : Nashua

It was rather strange to see Mehmaan, a place that I thought serves fairly solid Indian food be completely empty on a Saturday evening. I used to work around the area a few years back and a couple of my coworkers from India had introduced me to Mehmaan. Needless to say, I had good memories of that meal and when my family found ourselves stopping near the neighborhood, I thought to give it another shot.

Researching for this blog post, I'm a bit surprised at the level of some of the negative comments for Mehmaan. There's apparently another Indian place in Nashua called India Palace that a number of negative reviewers say is much better. I've never been, but is the other place that superior in food quality that business would be completely sapped away here? Perhaps if I'm ever back in this area...

Anyhow, we had a very solid meal here.

I'm not sure why I took a picture of this, but on the inside of the menu, they explain the meaning of Mehmaan as "warm hospitality."

Assorted Vegetable Platter - samosas, pakoras, aaloo tikkis & paneer pakoras. Only had a biteful of this, since my Mom likes to order an appetizer as her main entree and I didn't want to eat too much.

Mulligatawny Soup - Hmm, probably wouldn't order this again, as it didn't really have that much flavor.

Tandoori Chicken - This was by far the highlight dish of the night and up there with one of the best tandoori chickens I've had. Unbelievably juicy and tender and with that Tandoori flavor. Did this even go into the oven? I'm imagining that they used two methods to cook this and they marinaded the chicken for some time, since I just can't imagine a chicken roasting being that juicy.

Punjabi Chole - chickpeas simmered in onion & herbs (*Edit* Got this wrong) I don't think I've ever had this before. It wasn't bad, but I saw it as a dish complementary to the others.

Goat Biryani - Nice. Tender chunks of goat within the flavored, moist rice.

Salty Lassi - Decent salty lassi. I could have really gone for more bold spices in this, but it wasn't bad.

Plain Naan, Onion Kulcha - I tend to like more plain naan and this fit the bill. This was more of an accompaniment than a main focus and it perhaps ran a touch dry.

Plain Basmati rice - They mentioned the yellow comes from tumeric.

All in all, this was a pretty satisfying meal. I'm not quite sure why some complain about the greasiness, since we didn't encounter much oil in our dishes at all. Perhaps my main critique would be that the dishes, while still flavorful, played it moderately conservative with the spices. Judging by the salty lassi, which can range from bland to mildly polarizing to extremely polarizing in their spicing, this was in the middle, with enough tartness and spices for the rest of my family to shun it, but insufficient for me to think it could have used some more spices. I could also picture the goat biryani and the daal makhani having much bolder flavors.

That being said, this was a slight quibble and all of us walked away, happy and satisfied with a good meal.

295 Daniel Webster Hwy Nashua, NH 03060 (Map)
(603) 891-1616
($Indian, $Lowell, $Recommended)

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