Best Indian Restaurant - 2005
Indian cuisine -- at once spicy, sweet and savory -- is a true gastronomic delight. What's even more delightful is the sheer volume of awesome Indian food available in St. Louis. While we have fever dreams about House of India's excellent chicken biryani and crave the cheese paneer at Gokul, this year our heart belongs to India's Rasoi in Clayton. There are two other tiptop Rasoi locations -- one in the Central West End, one in west county -- but the Forsyth spot is the tiptoppest. The dimly lit interior is both regal and romantic; the shotgun-style room, fronted by white-curtained windows and bustling with crisply dressed waiters, is more East Village than central county. And oh, the food. Fork-tender lamb korma, studded with cashews, almonds and raisins. Garlic naan, baked on the surface of the tandoor oven. Cloud-light pulao rice, mixed with fresh peas and spices. If it's variety you're after, put on your eatin' pants and order the Rasoi Feast: seekh (minced, spiced beef -- a sort of subcontinental meatball) kebab, shrimp tikka, lamb curry, the fresh vegetable of the day, naan, basmati rice, a dessert and tea or coffee. Like many Indian restaurants, Rasoi offers a wonderfully cheap ($7.95) lunch buffet; unlike many Indian restaurants, the offerings vary from visit to visit, so prepare for a new delight each time.