Friday, November 26, 2004

Dosas with a twist at Hampton Chutney Co.

Anila, Anaka, Amrita & Noah at Hampton'sChutney Co.
Originally uploaded by lools.

I love Manhattan! Where else in the world can one find a crispy dosa with avocado, fresh tomato, arugula and jack cheese? I can see you rolling your eyes but I assure you that this dosa that I had at Hampton Chutney Co.was just divine.

We met several members of the Ramabadran clan for brunch this afternoon at this unique Soho joint where the atmosphere is very calming and devotional Indian chants play in the background. Amrita & Noah had flown in from California the previous night and Anila took the Chinatown bus from Boston to Manhattan yesterday.

It was great to catch up with our cousins over dosas that came with the most unusual fillings including - hold your breath - grilled chicken, smoked turkey and eggs! Surprisingly, we were all in an adventurous mood. Not a single one of us ordered the Classic Masala Dosa. We each ordered a different chutney along with the dosas so we could try them all. The pumpkin chutney and the cilantro chutney were spectacular. We could taste the freshness of the ingredients and the perfect proportions of spices.

Hampton Chutney company was started by an American couple who met at the kitchens of the Siddha Yoga Meditation ashram in Ganeshpuri, India. They were both doing seva - selfless service - in the ashram kitchen, where devotees from all over India and around the world cooked for hundreds or thousands of people. They came back to the U.S. and first opened a dosa restaurant in upstate New York and then one in the heart of downtown Manhattan in the hip Soho district.

Though I loved the vegetarian dosa I had, I did walk away feeling a bit weird - the non-veg options seemed a bit of out character with the rest of the vibe. I always thought that a vegetarian diet went hand in hand with yoga and a more tapasic lifestyle. I guess I'm wrong!


Blogger gs said...

three cheers to the hampton chutney company for starting a dosa restaurant in manhattan.for kamaths or pais to start a dosa restaurant is one thing.for an american couple to do so is entirely different.
we are used to the masala packed in the dosa.and having tasted that only we find anything else with dosa not so acceptable.i remember that three to four years ago an entrepreneur had started several dosa joints in mumbai with unconventional masala in the was chicken or some other nv stuff.initially the response from the public was not too bad but very soon they had to down change eating habits is very hard.
yoga and satvic food go well with each other.rajasic and tamasic food do not go in sync with is not only physical exercise.asanas are only a part of the whole is something more.a union between the individual and reach that stage,one has to become,your observation is very correct.

10:01 AM  
Blogger rums said...

That place was called Dosa Diner, it was owned by the same guy (Sanjay Narang) who runs Just Around the Corner and Three Flights Up. While it's true that it's difficult to change people's tastes, in this particular case, the restaurant shut down because the quality sucked. Most of the ventures by this guy have flopped, he is a poor business person.

10:27 AM  
Blogger gs said...

yes,that was the name.dosa diner.if that is sanjay narang's track record,will 'tendulkar's',also go the same way.

8:45 PM  
Blogger rums said...

I believe so. My husband took his office colleagues out for lunch recently and they were mighty disappointed with the food.
Btw, hi! this is lulu's friend. I like reading your comments, they remind me of my dad and the special bond I share with him.

6:08 AM  
Blogger gs said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7:24 PM  
Blogger rums said...

yes, she has i've ben to chummachumma and have also posted my comment on your cal blog :)

3:50 AM  
Blogger gs said...

i had posted my response to rum's observations on the chaotic growth of kolkata by greedy developers.i wonder where it has gone because i couldn't see it is very surprising.i will repeat my response on another day.

11:48 AM  
Blogger rums said...

but i saw your comment and responded as well. it's right there.

2:39 AM  

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