Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Biryani Pot- Finally, an improvement in Indian restaurants

Restaurant: Biryani Pot
6509 Westheimer Road, Houston, Texas 77057
Buffet or a-la-carte? A-la-carte
Date of visit: 10/22/13

Photo Credit (http://trademarks.justia.com/media/image.php?serial=85537507)

UPDATE 8/11/17: Came back a few times this year. First visit was for a friend's birthday. Ordered the lamb biryani and it was phenomenal. Second trip with my boss, where we both ordered the chicken biryani lunch special. They started using stainless steel for their thalis, which adds a nice home-like feelings. We both enjoyed the food, and the curries were much better than the last time I had them. It was incredibly filling as well, and it costed only $10! Finally, I came with a colleague. We ordered the chicken biryani family pack to go, but we decided to eat there at the last minute. And yet again the food was great. The portion of the biryani was much bigger than Bawarchi or Hyderabad House, which allowed us to enjoy the food even more. This time, they gave chicken manchurian, and that was honestly as big of a standout as the biryani. It's nice to see a good Indian/Pakistani place that is not too far from my work!

Chicken Biryani Family Pack

Chicken Lunch Special

Salam/hello guys! Today I will be reviewing another of the three Biryani restaurants here in Houston. The restaurant is called Biryani Pot. My work was let out at 12:30 pm and I had time to kill until 4:00 pm. I had no food with me and I had gotten hungry. For some reason, I was craving Indian food. Here is the thing about Indian food. Tandoori Nite was ruled out because it is not a good place. Then I heard about Biryani Pot. Being an avid fan of biryani since childhood, I wanted to try this place and compare it to Paradise Biryani Pointe (Review found here). I hoped that it would be better than Paradise, and that I would visit again whenever I feel like eating Indian food. Even though I am Indian, I rarely eat at Indian restaurants. Believe it or not, Indians actually prefer to eat at Indian restaurants than other cuisines. I really do not know why this is the common trend. Maybe because they only like spicy food (Indian food expert please help me out)? The reason I am different from other Indians is because I am proud to have a mother who cooks the most amazing Indian food at home. Whenever I actually eat Indian food, I usually get Biryani because it is my favorite Indian dish, and also it is a rare dish made in my house. I sometimes get Indian food that we rarely eat at home, like Tandoori chicken, or naan, or rogan josh (Kashmir mutton dish). So after the work was done, I made the trek to the restaurant.

Let The Experience begin!
Biryani Pot is located just after the CVS on Westheimer road. It is tricky to get in because it is very close to the intersection of Hillcroft avenue and Westheimer road. As I was coming in to park my car, there was a person sitting in front of the cars. I am assuming that he was there to be sure that the cars that park there were customers for the restaurant, and that the cars of non-customers would be towed. Inside the restaurant were the owner, his two helpers, and two waitresses. As I came in, I was greeted and I was asked to sit down. I was then handed the menu by a waitress.

Let's Eat!
I ordered the non-veg lunch special. Here is the thing about Indian restaurants. Many people from India are vegetarians. So you will always see a vegetarian and a non-vegetarian menu. With regards to non-veg, the meat you find are chicken, goat, and seafood. Some places have lamb, and some places are 100% vegetarian! The reason why there is no beef is because most Indians don't eat beef. Hinduism considers cows to be holy, thus eating beef is forbidden in their religion. According to the lunch special consisted of: Chicken Dum Biryani, salad, raita (yogurt and cucumber dish), chicken 65 (appetizer), daal (yellow lentil curry), salad, papad (crisp Indian appetizer), the house special chicken karahi, and naan. They even gave me a dessert called double ka mitha (bread pudding dessert). To drink, I had a can of Pepsi. Service was really fast. I got my food in only 1 minute and 3 seconds! Altogether, I paid $11.34 (tax included). A great price to be honest.

Clockwise: Naan and papad, chicken karahi, daal, Pepsi, salad, chicken 65, double ka mitha and raita (not pictured), biryani

The Verdict:
When the food came out, I thought it was microwaved. However, I saw the chefs making the biryani and curries in the kitchen! After a very long time, I was having freshly made food! It felt good after so many trips with reheated food. It was piping hot when I took my first bite.Well, the biryani was approximately 100 times better than Paradise. No kidding, this was GOOD. It had a lot of flavor, and it really reminded me of the biryani made at Indian weddings. The daal was simply fantastic. It reminded me of the daal my uncle makes whenever we go over to his house. The raita was a good condiment to the biryani. The naan, which I used to eat the karahi and chicken 65 with, was very fresh. There were, however, some mishaps. The karahi was somewhat bland, as it had very little flavor. The chicken 65 was so-so. Not good, not bad, but average. The papad was not crispy enough to my liking also. I felt that it could have used a few extra minutes in the crisper. I did not eat the dessert as I am not a fan of Indian dessert (I am a HUGE chocoholic). All this food was washed down with a can of Pepsi.

Biryani Pot is definitely better than Paradise. Their biryani definitely trumps the one served at Paradise. Now if they could fixed their chicken dishes, and the papad, the taste would be even better. I would recommend this restaurant mainly to eat biryani. If you are vegetarian, take the daal and naan. The lunch special is somewhat risky because the dishes except the biryani change. Overall, I would give it one thumb up.

Service: 8/10
Food: 8/10
Waiting time: 10/10
Total: 26/30 = 86.6% (B)
Pricing: $ out of $$$$

Restaurant Information:
Biryani Pot
6509 Westheimer Road, Houston, Texas 77057
Phone: (713) 278-8085
Fax: (713) 278-8086
Timings: Mon: Closed; Lunch Tue-Fri: 11 AM - 2:30 PM and Sat-Sun: 11:30 AM - 3 PM; Dinner Tue-Thu and Sun: 5:30 PM - 10 PM and Fri-Sat: 5:30 PM - 10:30 PM
Caters: Yes
To confirm catering order, call (610) 714-2123

Feel free to comment below!

Zain Mohammed


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