January 2007: 100 Very Best Restaurants
Standout curries and tandoori specialties.
Reviewed By Todd Kliman, Ann Limpert, Cynthia Hacinli
Comments () | Published January 22, 2007
100 Best Restaurants (2010)

Heritage India - Glover Park
Address: 2400 Wisconsin Ave., NW, Washington, DC 20007
Phone: 202-333-3120
Neighborhood: Glover Park, Georgetown
Cuisines: Vegetarian/Vegan, Indian
Opening Hours: Open daily for lunch noon to 2:30 and for dinner 5 to 10:30.
Price Range: Moderate
Dress: Informal
Noise Level: Chatty
Reservations: Recommended
Best Dishes Bhel puri; eggplant in sesame-cashew sauce; black lentils with cream and butter; yakhani gosht, a Kashmiri lamb stew with yogurt and saffron; prawns in green-pepper sauce; sag paneer; flatbreads.
Price Details: Lunch specials, $7.95 to $12.95. Dinner appetizers, $4.50 to $10.50; entrees, $9.95 to $23.95.

No. 30: Heritage India

It might not be the hippest Indian restaurant—you won’t find rosewater martinis, a high-style lounge, or vindaloo small plates—but this dining room, appointed with gold-threaded silks and carved wooden doors, has been a paragon of quiet elegance and fine cooking for two decades.

Even when it’s filled, the dining room feels hushed, with solemn waiters arranging curries and stews over warming flames at each table. The kitchen is well versed in many of the country’s regional cuisines—there’s yogurt-simmered lamb from the northern regions of Kashmir, thick filets of grouper stewed Goan-style in coconut and cumin, and vegetarian curries from the central state of Hyderabad.

What separates Heritage from the competition? A lot. The slowly stirred curries match tender meats to velvety gravies that are spicy but never assaulting. We’ve yet to see anything emerge from the tandoor dried out, whether it’s yogurt-marinated quail, lemony prawns, or saffron-scented chicken. Other dishes to look for are potatoes with chutney and mint, vegetable fritters, lamb vindaloo, baby eggplants stewed in sesame, chicken makhani, curried chicken with poppy seeds, and okra with mango powder.

Beautifully blistered breads are flecked with mint, brushed with butter, or stuffed with onions; cardamom-scented rice tempers the heat and sops up gravy. This is as traditional as Indian cooking gets, and it’s marvelous.

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Posted at 08:00 AM/ET, 01/22/2007 RSS | Print | Permalink | Washingtonian.com Restaurant Reviews