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India Grill

It's been long agreed upon by most Indian food fanatics like myself, that Bombay Bistro was the reigning king of Indian food in Rockville. While Bombay Bistro is very good, I think that the owners have put all of their money into Indique, which opened last year (I think - timing?) on Connecticut Ave. In the mean time, Bombay Bistro is starting to look a bit run down. The last time I was there, the restaurant almost seemed filthy to me. While the food is still very good, the restaurant itself definitely looked like it could use a good hosing down.

In the mean time, India Grill has moved to a new location, a few blocks away from India Bistro on Rockville Pike in the shopping center behind the IHOP. Our first trip, Amy and I had a chance to stop by India Grill for lunch and I was pleasantly surprised at how good all of our food was. The new location is newly renovated and elegant looking. Better yet...it's clean.

We were tempted to just get the lunch buffet, but I wanted to try something besides the usual choices of daal, channa masala, vegetable saag, and chicken curry. We both ordered Mahkani dishes: paneer and chicken.

"How would you like your dishes?" The waiter asked. "Mild, medium, or hot."

"We'll have them medium." I replied. I love it when an Indian restaurant asks you how you want your food cooked. They almost always make the food too mild. The medium actually wasn't that hot for me, but everyones taste is different. The tomato-based mahkani sauce was thick but not overly creamy or salty. So much of the Indian food that I've eaten lately is way too salty and I found it refreshing to actually taste the flavor of the tomato and Indian spices in the sauce.

I'm not sure what it is, but sometimes it seems like Indian restaurants get their bread from an Indian grocer's freezer. This was not the case at India Grill, where the Poori and Paratha we ordered were quite fresh and seemed like they'd just been made.  Amy and I thought the paratha was a little dry, though.

Service is prompt and gracious, but perhaps a little too gracious if you know what I mean. For example, at the end of our first meal at India Grill, our server left the check and I put my credit card in it. When the server returned, he asked if he could take the check. I wanted to say, "I wouldn't have put my credit card there if I wasn't ready for you to take it." Anyway, it's a pet peeve of mine so don't pay much attention to it. I was never so nice when I was a waiter, but I guess an overly polite wait staff is better than a rude wait staff.

A few nights later, Amy and I returned to India Grill for dinner. There was no wait for a table, but the restaurant had a decent crowd with most of the tables filled. We sat outside on the small patio which has about five or six tables where you only have a view of the parking lot and other stores, but still, and outdoor patio in this part of Rockville is a rarity.

This time, Amy ordered the buffet which, I should mention, is available for dinner as well as lunch. She found that the buffet food was very mild, but given the fact that she was having Braxton-Hicks contractions at the time and wasn't feeling all that wonderful, she didn't really mind at all. I went with my all time favorite Indian dish -- lamb rogan josh.

For an appetizer, I chose the Paneer Pakora, (moist chunks of Indian cheese deep fried in a chick pea batter seasoned with curry) which were ideally cooked. Every other time I've ordered this dish at other places, the chef overcooks the cheese leaving a rubbery, burnt mess for me to eat. India Grill's chefs are able to keep the cheese moist and succulent while having a crispy exterior on the batter. If this dish was all I ever ate at India Grill, I'd be satisfied.

The lamb rogan josh was simple but good. Again, the sauce of the curry wasn't too creamy and I could really taste and smell all of the spices that made up the dish like cardamon and coriander. I ordered it medium spicy again and it certainly came out that way. It was spicy enough to make my nose run a little, but I think I can handle some more heat. Next time, I'm going to go for hot.

India Grill
785 Rockville Pike # K
Rockville, MD 20852
(301) 279-7700

Dress Code: Casual
Smoking: Not Allowed
Closest Metro: Rockville
Parking: There's lots of parking on the shopping center parking lot where the restaurant is located.
Reservations: Probably taken, but there's no need
Amy's Bathroom Rating: Clean but typical of an Indian restaurant.



Thanks for the review! India Grill has been making good, reliable Indian food for years--I had my first meal there over ten years ago, at the old location down the Pike. I stopped in a couple of weeks ago for the buffet and was pleasantly surprised--the veg dishes seemed even better, tasting as close to those I've had in India as any in the DC area. I also like the makhani dishes, and they're best when ordered "hot". Based on your review, I'll definitely try the lamb rogan josh.

Like you, my favorite Indian is Heritage India--far and away the best Indian I've had, including my many trips to India--followed by Passage to India. But India Grill is the best in Rockville and seems to have gotten better.


You should try out one of the southern Indian vegetarian places in Langley Park, Udupi Palace and Woodland. They're out in the ghetto, I know. But look at this masala dosa! http://flickr.com/photos/synaesthesia/42000812/ It was pretty tasty.


I love that oh so British recipe link : "cook the lamb until it is lovely and tender".
Well, the lamb looks lovely now.....must be ready!


If you ever want to try another really yummy indian place, try Bombay Curry Company on Mt. Vernon Avenue, it's in the little shopping center beneath the Calvert highrise apartment building. The vindalu is excellent.


Jamie, I love the South Indian veg places in Langley Park. My wife expecially loves the Sunday buffet at Udupi Palace.

bad penguin

I love the India Grill! I was actually just trying to find their menu online so I could place an order, and laughed when I saw your url come up on my search. My husband and I have been eating there for years. The owner is really nice, the food is tasty, and I've always appreciated the way they ask how you want the food spiced too. Back when I still ate meat, I loved their Keema Naan. You should try it if you like lamb.


I have been going to India Grill for over 7 years now and it is my favorite restaurant of all time. I used to be all about the Malia Kofta, however I have recently switched to Navrattan Korma. Yum! That and some meat samosas.... mmmm... I know what I'm getting for dinner!

You can sit outside when there is nice weather and the staff really gets to know you. They pretty much have my dish memorized. ;)

christopher R Dennis

My Favorite indian dish is lamb curry raan texas pete hot


I visited India Grill over the weekend with my boyfriend. We both had the lunch buffet and a couple of drinks. The bill came to $26.99. That is ridiculous!!!

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