I’ve been aware of Baar Baar for the past couple of years since there’s been a trend of modern Indian restaurants opening in New York City. Chef Sujan Sarkar and his team uses dabbles in sous-vide, foams, gels and such, but they do not dominate the menu. His small plates and bigger plates provide a range of flavors, including traditional (like Kashmiri-style lamb ribs and butter chicken) and innovative, like dahi puri filled with tamarind, avocado, yogurt mousse, raspberry chaat masala. He makes liberal use of avocados and offers creative cocktails (what I’ve observed at other tables; I opted not to drink that evening).
The restaurant is definitely not like most Indian restaurants I’ve been to so far as it’s decidedly have more colorful, cushioned furniture and semi-circular banquettes at one third of the restaurant, the middle has straight banquettes and seating with a display of colorful bottles and tableware, and the large bar area with a mural of a woman with kohl lined eyes staring at the room (the latter part of the restaurant seen at the top of the post). It is a pretty restaurant that can appeal to many types of diners (even possibly taking your parents though I went there early in the evening).
I had a tasting of various dishes sent out from the kitchen so most of the portions shown on my photos are smaller than what you would receive. The only full-sized dishes were the lamb shank and the desserts. The food was delicious. It’s not too heavy and the creative takes on traditional dishes were delightful. If I were to choose my favorite savory courses of the evening: the small but vibrant flavored parcels of dahi puri and all of their curry and stewed dishes (see lobster and prawns moilee and lamb shank nihari) that were perfectly cooked proteins with delicious sauces. The mushroom biriyani was good too and vegetarian friendly (the presentation was cool to boot, see video below).
I didn’t expect to like dessert, admittedly, since most Indian restaurants tend to be overtly sweet. However, the team Baar Baar did a great job toning down the sugar to a palatable amount and have wonderful textures of airy, crisp and creamy with a good hit of flavor.
What we ate/drank:
- Mango Lassi
- Masala Chai
- DAHI PURI Sweet & Sour Yogurt, Raspberry Chaat Masala
- PANEER CHILLI Crispy Katafi, Lime Achar, Chili Garlic Chutney
- TUNA BHEL TOSTADA Avocado, Radish, Onion, Cilantro, Togarashi
- GRILLED OCTOPUS Goan Cafreal Masala, Pickled Ramps, Sweet Corn
- MUSHROOM BIRYANI Caramelized Onion, Avocado Raita
- LAMB SHANK NIHARI Mint, Ginger, Rose
- LOBSTER & PRAWN MOILEE Fennel, Tomato, Cilantro Oil
- Garlic Naan and Chili Cheese Naan
- CARROT HALWA CAKE Phirni Mousse, Saffron Pistachio Ice Cream
- MANGO & RASMALAI TART Mango Cream, Saffron & Mango Ice Cream
13 E 1st St
New York, NY 10003
Phone: (212) 228-1200