Home food is the foundation of happiness. There’s no sincerer love than a plate of steaming dal chawal or chicken masala. The meal touches your soul before it touches your taste buds. There’s warmth and familiarity in every bite. Spices are blended with care, while the herbs conjure up cures for all woes. The fragrance transports you to a familiar place - your mother’s kitchen. And, although it’s wonderful to try cuisines from across the globe, our hearts always gravitate back to the dearest dishes of our homeland.
New Zealand is famed for its fresh produce and local delicacies, but occasionally, the lentils and condiments from back home, come calling. For those moments, Thomas Cook has got you covered. You need not fret, because it’s easy to find good Indian food in Kiwi land. You just need to know where to look.
For those times when only rajma-roti will do, head to this heartwarming eatery in Auckland. India Gate promises a true north Indian experience with whiffs of nostalgia and dollops of friendly service guaranteed. Led by the highly acclaimed executive chef, Shivani Arora, the restaurant indulges the palate with the most wholesome and flavourful dishes. Within minutes of being seated, one will be welcomed by a menu that reeks of gooey cheese nans and simmering butter chicken. But along with those classic cravings that include succulent kebabs and creamy vegetable curries, why not try something new? We recommend the sinful chilli fritter, a hand rolled pastry stuffed with mashed potatoes, green peas and raisins, ground with spices and drizzled with thick yogurt. Wash this down with some dreamy lassi and you’re in for a good night’s rest.
Zaika Indian Bistro & Bar reflects the values of an average Indian today, traditional with a modern appeal. Great food coupled with elegant décor ensures that one is ready to tuck in, forks out and aprons on! So, head over for a hefty portion of masala, whether it’s in your food or in your tea! Once you lose yourself to the hara bhara kebab and chicken kadai, you’re in for a real treat. Lather your senses with the goodness of rich lamb vindaloo and the magic of a perfectly made paratha. For a little oriental spice, eat your way through a plate of sweet-spicy vegetarian manchurian. The world of curry waits for you, at Wellington’s very own mini India.
When age-old traditions are handled with care and replicated with a little more zest, isn’t that all you could ask for, as a lover of ghar ka khanna? This delightful eating house in the city of Wanaka is packed with good flavour and texture. A cozy, charming restaurant braising with sumptuous Indian fare, The Spice Room comes highly recommended by us! Definitely try the crunchy squid salad where the seafood is marinated with mint, coriander and a dash of lemon juice, cooked to perfection and then placed atop a bed of lettuce with an accompanying seasonal fruit. Also feast on the mango chicken, mildly spiced and cooked in cashew nuts, nutmeg and silky mango pulp. Trust us, it’s worth it.
For a hearty helping of all things toasty, roasted and oozing with good old makhan, visit this north Indian restaurant named after our very own wonder of the world. If the name is any inkling, you’ll know right away that this eatery serves up a smorgasbord of lip-smacking Indian plates. You must try some of the scrumptious best-selling items such as butter prawns, chicken korma, lamb samosa, papad and dips! When in Dunedin, do not miss the opportunity of savouring your favourite dishes amidst a tasteful ambience and stellar rates. This eatery plates up homely experiences for everyone to enjoy, over oodles of easy conversation.
Queenstown’s Bombay Palace is the place to be if you’re a quintessential Mumbaikar. If your belly desires familiar Lucky’s biryani, why not try the specialty lamb biryani here? Relish every bite of soft, hot meat and spiced rice. Don’t forget to cool your palate with spoons full of dahi. And when that’s done, pig out with some divine deserts, because what’s a meal without a little sugary wonder? A melting pot of Indian cuisines, you will discover full-bodied gravies, flat breads and melt-your-mouth kebabs. Your very own gateway to India, located in New Zealand, place this eating house high on your list of soul food!
It is said that every Indian who has visited Hamilton, must have dined at Little India. It’s no surprise, considering this proud little joint, carries a legacy of being a lovely family restaurant for over two decades. With a generous variety of vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes, travellers appease their foodie yearnings here. Family recipes passed down generations are carefully prepared by expert chefs, who have sought training from the owner’s very own grandmother (Premjit Kaur Gill). If that isn’t a personalized offering, we don’t know what it is. Make sure you try the malai kofta and Amritsari chhole.
Are you dreaming about these delectable, mouthwatering and tasty delights? If that’s a yes, consider embarking on food trail across New Zealand’s Indian restaurants. Discover the beauty of your native cuisine, while exploring a far-off land.