June 20, 2010 By Christian Murray
Basmati Table, the much-anticipated Indian restaurant located on Skillman Ave (between 46th and 47th), is scheduled to open next Wednesday or Thursday.
The restaurant is going to be co-owned by Alim Maruf, who is the owner of Bliss Restaurant, an up-market French Bistro that is located diagonally across the street. Maruf and his business partner, Kumar Rajander, decided to establish Basmati Table, since they believed that Sunnyside lacked a classy Indian restaurant. “People kept asking me, why isn’t there a high-end Indian restaurant in the neighborhood,” Maruf said.
Basmati Table will have a menu that offers many traditional meat and vegetarian dishes. The restaurant, which has a 22-person capacity, will also serve wine and beer. However, Maruf has yet to receive a liquor license (which is expected in about two months), so patrons, he said, are free to bring their own wine and beer in the interim.
Maruf said the restaurant will serve– among other dishes–tikkas, tandooris, shish kebabs, goat/lamb/fish curries, chicken korma, and tandoori fish. There will be an array of breads to choose from.
Among its vegetation options, it will offer lentils; mixed vegetables including cauliflower, squash, turnips, and beans cooked in Indian flavors. Another dish includes a whole tomato stuffed with vegetables and slowly cooked in a tandoori oven.
The restaurant will offer desserts, such as rice pudding and ras malai. Ras Malai is a dessert that is comprised of dumplings made from cottage or ricotta cheese soaked in sweetened, thickened milk.
The restaurant will be open 7 days per week serving lunch between 11:00am and 3:30pm and dinner from 4:00pm through to 11:00 pm. It will also offer takeout and delivery service. Furthermore it will cater events.
Maruf said that he will run both Bliss and Basmati Table at the same time. He said there will be a chef at Basmati Table who will cook based on his recipes.
Maruf has had success with Bliss, with the restaurant being recommended by Michelin in its 2010 guide. Many are confident his Indian restaurant will fare just as well.