The Needle: Saravana Palace (December 2007)

After a brilliant debut last fall, this strip-mall purveyor of South Indian cooking seems to have slipped precipitously. The range and depth of its 160-item menu, along with its impressive consistency, landed the Fairfax restaurant among the top 25 of our 100 Best Restaurants list last January, but a recent visit revealed a multitude of sins. Frying was careless, resulting in a couple of disks of poori slicked with oil. A dish of coconut rice, one of the glories of the menu, no longer sported thick curls of fresh coconut—what once was fluffy and fragrant was oily and dull. And the curries that had impressed us with their punch and clarity were lacking in both.

-This appeared in the December, 2007 issue of The Washingtonian. 

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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 Logan Circle.