Passage to India

Indian cooking from the country's North, South, East, and West in an elegant dining room.

From January 2006 100 Very Best Restaurants

THE SCENE. Families and couples from India, Bethesda, and elsewhere switch off their cell phones and hush their voices at this latticed, chandeliered dining room presided over by gentlemanly owner Sudhir Seth.

WHAT YOU'LL LOVE. Seth, who spent years cooking at Heritage India, has crafted a menu all his own, pulling in dishes from across his native India. Sure, you'll find a standout chicken tikka masala, but it's worth branching out to the warming casseroles from the North, biryanis and curries from the South, and seafood and vegetables from the East and West. And the kitchen has a way with the tandoor oven–even seafood comes out soft and succulent.

WHAT YOU WON'T. Impersonal, somewhat stiff service.

Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Petworth.