Thursday, May 26, 2016

Larosh Grill- A halal Pakistani place in northern Katy

Restaurant: Larosh Grill
Address: 18855 West Little York Road, Katy, Texas 77449
Buffet or a-la-carte: a-la-carte
Date of visit: 4/27/2016

Salam/hey guys! After nearly a month of absence, I am back food blogging! The reasons for the long absence are: school and restriction from parents. School got really busy as finals were around the corner. I had to concentrate on that as I was really worried about not getting straight As (Alhamdulilah I ended up getting them). This was the last cash that I would have for a while, since I was discouraged from having it on me. Nevertheless, I was able to eat at some places, but not new ones because the new restaurants that opened up this year are really far away (i.e. Sugar Land, Southwest and Northeast Harris county). Very few openings occurred in Northern Harris County these past few months. Most of the reviews this year, with the exception of Nyam Nyam, Garbanzo, and Uyghur Bistro, have been of places that were open for at least 11 months. It is honestly hard to believe that I have tried nearly half of the halal restaurants in Houston for the past 3 years. There were a couple of Ls I took. The prime L I took was Torchy's Tacos having halal lamb for a limited period. I know for sure that there are some places that I have in mind to try either during Ramadan or after Ramadan. I also hope to try a few places in Atlanta, Austin, Chicago, Dallas (unless we go to places that I've been to before), and Kansas City. Chicago, Dallas, and Austin are confirmed, and I hope the other cities would be confirmed as well.

Anyways, the last review before the hiatus was of Larosh Grill. Larosh is the newest Pakistani restaurant in Katy. Now why was I particular about trying this place? Well. it was to determine whether it would be worth convincing my parents to consider getting takeout here instead of Khan BBQ. For the past 7 years, Khan BBQ has been the only place that my parents would get takeout from. In fact, we gt it so often that my dad has experimented with different items. Long before I started this blog, my dad would get the chicken karahi (too oily and needed salt), daal (nothing compared to Al Markaz in Dallas), biryani (bland), and naan (one of two acceptable things). It used to be based on what my mom and sister wanted ONLY. We have even called them from as far as Hobby Airport, and also Brazos Bend State Park. There have been some really irritating moments that I can remember. I remember once at my mosque, I got a few boxes of biryani from another Pakistani place, but my dad got one box of biryani specifically from them (which made absolutely no sense at all). Another instance I remember was when my dad decided to "surprise" me with food, which turned out to be their mediocre biryani. He would often boast about their biryani, as if he was paid to advertise their food wherever he would go. When we had no food on Mondays, my mom fried eggs. I would just think "Instead of wasting your paycheck at that place, why not make fried eggs on other days as well". Finally, it turned out that they went there on my birthday while I was at D'Marcos enjoying delicious deep dish pizza. It pretty much tells about their preferences and further proves the fact that most of my trips are much better when I go by myself or with friends. This was cemented when they actually did not honor my request FOR MY BIRTHDAY DINNER to go to either Sayad or Mai Colachi (we had relatives over and some were very picky), a place that's actually suitable for special occasions. We ended up at Jamillah, which turned out that it was PLANNED TWO WEEKS BEFORE MY BIRTHDAY. To be fair, the same ordeal happened to my sister where she wanted Bonefish, yet ended up at Saravanaa Bhavan. The major difference is that Saravanaa Bhavan is one of her favorite places, while Jamillah was mediocre, enough for me to deduct their overall food score.

Now regarding Khan BBQ, my sister also plays a major role into why we hardly get takeout from the other 280+ and 20 nearest halal places to my house. One mention of "chappli kabab" or "Chargha" and I would be told to get it. Yet, if I say "I want pizza" (i.e. Home Base, which actually has tasty food and is much closer to my house), they bring up the no-going-out card or "it's too fat card". One mention of grilled chicken teriyaki from Bonsai and I would be expecting a major yelling. Frankly, it is completely hypocritical to immediately reject my request for the reasons above yet let my sister get her choice. It is illogical to say no to shish tawook (which is LITERALLY grilled chicken Arab style), Jujeh (grilled chicken Persian style) or even boti (grilled chicken cubes Indian/Pakistani) from somewhere like Bundu Khan WHEN CHARGHA IS FREAKING DEEP FRIED AND NOT GRILLED. And they claim that chargha is healthy when it is much worse than grill chicken since it's deep fried.

Now Larosh opened in late 2015, replacing Tikka Boti (never tried it as I read somewhere that the owners made their 7 and 8 year old children work as waiters, and I refuse to give my business to anyone who make little children work). I had been eager to wanting to try that place. I did get one chance with their malai boti, and it was pretty good. Now hopefully after this second trip, I would try to go again and then make my case for changing the main takeout from Khan BBQ to Larosh.

Let The Experience Begin!
Larosh is located next to The Cave Hookah Lounge. Inside, the decorations were pretty nice, and the place was clean. It was however, completely dead inside. I was only one of two people inside, and I was the only one who was dining in. It was a really awkward feeling to be honest. The counter was in the front, and there were pamphlets which had lunch specials. And lo and behold, the curries had free stuff with them. This is something extremely rare, but it should be mandatory because not every single person would want to pay extra for naan or rice, not every single person wants to sample all the curries, and not every single person wants to eat a large amount of curry, biryani, or tikka. If Arab, Turkish, Persian, or even Chinese places give free rice with your entree, why can't Indian or Pakistani places start doing the same thing and making it fair for the customer? Anyways, after the gentleman placed his to-go order, I was ready to order.

Let's Eat!
I ordered chicken biryani. I figured that it would be one thing to try so that I could convince them to change their minds, since they're obsessed with Khan BBQ's version. The price? $7.57 (tax included)! So far so good. The waiting time was 12 minutes, much better than me having to wait for an hour for a few naans. I literally just sat on my phone the entire time.
One thing that threw me off was that at the table I sat in, one of the plates was dirty. There were some stains on the plates. I didn't want to take a pic because I was disgusted by it. But the plate next to me was clean.


Besides the lunch specials, the Larosh menu is generic. You have popular generic items such as biryani, tikka, chicken karahi, and naan. They even have some items such as sandwiches and burgers, both Pakistani style and non-Pakistani style.

The Chicken Biryani

The Verdict:
The biryani came with raita and "salad" which turned out to be onions, bell peppers and carrots. Now the taste was very weird. It looked good when it came to the table. However, it seemed like lemon juice was added to the biryani, because the smell of lemon was dominating. This smell would likely indicate that this is chicken Sindhi Biryani, a type biryani that is said to be originated in the Pakistani province of Sindh. Taste-wise, it was just OK. Nothing to brag about really.
Service wasn't that bad either. The person was normal. Nothing to complain about.

The biryani was OK, but not enough for me to convince my parents to change their takeout preference. What a bummer. If you are looking for the best Pakistani food or biryani in town, then I suggest you look somewhere else as this lies in the middle of the huge list. The next time I would try this place is if it were to cater to another event, or if I decide to make another visit if I feel like trying to once again convince my parents to get takeout from here instead of Khan BBQ.

Service: 8/10
Food: 6.5/10
Total: 14.5/20 = 72.5% (C)
Pricing: $$ out of $$$$

Restaurant Information:
Larosh Grill
18855 West Little York Road, Katy, Texas 77449
Phone: (281) 861-4612

Tuesday: closed
Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Sunday: 11 AM - 9 PM
Friday and Saturday: 11 AM - 10 PM

Caters: yes

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Zain Mohammed

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