On September 15, Masalawala will open its doorways as certainly one of New York City’s most anticipated eating places this 12 months. And while you eat there, you can even store for the components.
Chef and co-owner Chintan Pandya will serve meals from Kolkata, alongside along with his tackle under-the-radar specialties from throughout India. On the cabinets that line one wall of the restaurant, in Brooklyn’s Park Slope, will probably be spices and different merchandise from small producers.
They’ll be freshly packaged, top-quality objects in small quantities, so components similar to cinnamon and coriander seed don’t remain sitting round in dwelling pantries nicely previous their prime.
“In the ’70s and ’80s in India, that’s what it was like: Small merchants would measure things out and hand it over to you,” says Roni Mazumdar, co-founder with Pandya of the restaurant group Unapologetic Foods.
In the previous two years, the pair have opened among the metropolis’s most dynamic spots, together with the high-volume, flavor-packed restaurant Dhamaka on the Lower East Side, which made slow-roasted Rajasthani rabbit probably the most coveted dish on the town. Their most up-to-date spot, the fried rooster sandwich storefront Rowdy Rooster within the East Village, has set town’s collective mouth on hearth.
With Masalawala, Unapologetic Foods is making its first foray into packaged items and meals merchandise, which the pair have seen demand for and plan to develop sooner or later. “There’s room for this concept in every neighborhood in New York, and beyond that,” Mazumdar says.
Masalawala, which suggests “spice merchant,” is a reboot of a restaurant on the Lower East Side that closed final 12 months when its lease expired after a decade-long run. A number of dishes from its early menu will probably be revived, similar to beetroot and banana flower chop.
Other dishes Pandya will serve embrace daab chingri, a Bengali prawn curry that is cooked-then served-in a young younger coconut. He’ll additionally provide a number of rooster dishes, similar to Kashmiri-style yakhni pulao, a pilaf made with long-grain basmati rice that is cooked in a inventory infused with fennel, ginger, and garlic.
Also on the menu will probably be saoji rooster, a fiercely spicy dish from the Vidarbha area in central India, is a meat-based delicacies that the chef has turn out to be curious about. Mazumdar’s father, Satyen, would be the supervisor.
To begin, the merchandise at Masalawala will all be shelf-stable. In the long run, the pair plan to promote some ready meals together with Pandya’s distinctive paneer, served at Dhamaka. They’re sourcing merchandise from spice importers Diaspora Co. and Burlap & Barrel, in addition to goodies from the vegan bar makers (and Goldman Sachs Group Inc. alum) Elements Truffles.
Opposite the groceries is a white brick wall adorned with a daring, colourful mural of the Hindi phrase for “spice.” The full-service, full-bar house seats 30 indoors and about 30 within the yard. It will probably be open all through the day, from about 11 am to 11 pm.
Whether or not it turns into the Eataly of the South Asian meals world, Mazumdar sees Masalawala as an opportunity to spotlight entrepreneurs who characterize the area, and to develop the neighborhood that they characterize so strongly.
“It will be an all-day experience,” he says. “You can come and shop or eat.”
“Or both,” replies Pandya.
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