Darul Kebab (Cambridge, MA)

I’m gonna have some simple vegan small chickpeas and spinach at Darul Kebab, it’s the best Channa Saag of any sub-continent place in Boston. That’s real food! DK is a gem, it’s Bangladeshi really, but has my vote as one of Boston’s best “Indian” restaurants. Kebabs are great, great value, and the veggie dishes are exemplars of vegan food done right. I can taste the whole piece of star anise and cardamom in that Channa Saag right now in my mind’s tongue! And the chickpeas are smaller and more tender than normal ones. I’m going tonight!

Plus the “Thank you, please come again” sign on the door original from the KFC that used to be there is hilarious. I hope they never change it.

I totally get “it is what it is”. It is! Lord knows I have pigged out on carbs and deep fried stuff many times.


Darul kebab remains one of my mysterious to do items. I was at the bookstore in Porter Square on Monday and was so pleased to see that it’s still open.

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Oh you are in for a treat! Try the mixed grill, channa saag, right off the bat. It’s been around for a while, everytime i go there are expats there, must be a pretty good population here.

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Oh, I’ll bite and bite hard, I’m that dog chasing cars down the street all day!

I’m no newbie even if I look 40 years younger than you. What have you eaten? I would stick to the Bangladeshi and Paki items. I’ve been there since the month they opened, a couple times, and then haven’t been back since last year. I was pleasantly surprised. Kabobs good, veggie section good, Roganjosh and ground meat curries great. Nehari, check. Chapli okay just serviceable. Haven’t had Biryani or Karahi’s yet.

Here’s what I ate tonight there. Mixed grill, Chana Saag, Dal. Very simple, very good. And lots of cricket.


Who let the dogs out? It was dabbler!


Unless DK has taken a significant turn for the better, I must strongly disagree. The food there on my several visits has run the gamut from the so-so to the so-bad.

I speak as one sympathetic to them, and with at least one indelible memory of my experiences there:

In the very early morning of April 2, 2011, I went there to watch on their biggish screen India battle Sri Lanka in the ODI cricket world cup final (ODI stands for “One Day International” – a form of the game that lasts one day, as the brightest among you will have guessed, not the five days that real cricket takes). I got there around 7 a.m. From time to time as the game progressed they brought around cups of chai and snacks, more substantial as the morning progressed. I didn’t specifically order anything, but food and drink kept coming. My wife and daughter joined me at my table for a while in the late morning, snacked, drank and left. When the game ended with the Indian captain, with one eye on history and the other on the ball, hitting that ball out of the ground I had no idea how much we’d eaten and drunk at my table. They produce a bill that was comical in its lowness.

I’d been there before on many occasions and have been there since, but less and less so because their food has been so reliably mediocre (as opposed to spectacularly bad). They’ve occasionally had a good fried fish, but little else stands out.

I haven’t been in about five years, and I suppose it’s possible that newbies* like anon6418899 have had better experiences there.

  • just seeing if he’ll rise to the bait

Eta: For non-newbies see this and follow through to the chowhound mentions of DK.


Decided to move this to a new topic, since it seems valuable on its own outside of the Plant Pub discussion.

Of course, I’m hamfisted enough to have missed selecting one post and now the anon6418899/fooddabbler exchange is out of order. All I can say is, you get what you pay for!


I am not a newbie, I joined this site soon as it opened, before you did, grasshopper. I joined chowhound in the 1990’s and when CH was in the midst of churn, I was invited to their HQ in SF. I tried to advise them but ofc they kept making things worse and then they censored a post of mine and said fuck you forever and left. Before CH I was a regular on alt.food bboards in the 1980’s but you kids don’t know about that.

Now get off my lawn young man!

They only have Tilapia why would you order that. Are you sure you know food? Is this what you do?

I’m sure no offence was intended but, here in the UK, the P-word is a term of significant racial abuse, on a par with the N-word. Sort of took my breath away to see it here.

On a different and much less contentious linguistic question, anon6418899, I see you mention their name as “Kebab”, in the thread title, as you do in your OP. That would be the way we spell it in the UK. I also see that you use “kabob” in a later post which I’ve always understood was the American take on the spelling. Just wondered if, in fact, the spellings are interchangeable where you are?

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Hmm did not know that! We are just super lazy about typing out stuff. I think Kebob and Kabob are interchangeable it’s pretty fluid. I sometimes type Channa other times Chana it’s not really an agreed on precise thing, and every restaurant menu can vary in spelling from one place to the next. It could be Channa Saag, Chana Sag various combos of such, we are just making stuff up! Szechuan, Sichuan, now it’s kinda going back to Sze Chuan (space intentional) which is kinda more helpful for non Chinese speakers. Word trends are weird!

Ohhh - so you are really important (how could I have missed it before)

Finally the reason why CH wasn’t good as before

Don’t take yourself so serious…

Serious? I’m the one enjoying all the laughs at your whiny expense

Mod note:

Hey guys, go easy on each other, would you?


I never got an invite to personal contact. I guess intercontinental travel was a step too far. But I was contacted by a very senior CH executive and invited to propose actions the company might take to widen its appeal to an international (i.e. not American) audience. The route was pretty clear to me but I spent some time bringing together my reasoning and the actual steps needing to be taken. Wrote it all up, with references, and sent it off. Got a brief acknowledgement from her. And that was the last I heard. And, of course, CH not only never actioned any of my proposals but never introduced anything of their own. So, their international boards just remained places where Americans went to get information from other Americans which, of course, meant CH remained a very limited resource. Of course, we’ve now reached a point in history where food forums are not the “go to” places for information.


What are your go to sources?

I don’t see you writing anything about food. I am giving tons of intel. How are you contributing to a “well functioning food board” lol

no printer just fax bruh

I am a dinosaur which is why I’m still on this food forum.

But the effective demise of the egullet UK/Ireland board was brought about by folk moving to Twitter and Facebook groups, neither of which have any appeal for me.

To answer your question, I’ve now returned to relying on the likes of professionally operated local and national gig/review websites. And, when desperation sets in, Tripadvisor.

For an example of the latter, we’re hoping to shortly visit a city that’s unknown to us, food-wise. We’ll be there a couple of nights. Tripadvisor was the only source of information. So, I looked at their Top 20 rated places - discounting those which were more bars than restaurants and those where we didnt fancy the cuisine. That left around ten. I looked at all their websites and discounted five. So, now we have a shortlist. It is pointless reading TA reviews of Top 20 places as no-one actually talks about the food they eat in any meaningful way - usually only saying that it was “best ever” or “the steak was to die for” (neither of which are the slightest bit helpful). And I diss Tripadvisor reviews like that, even though I post reviews there,as I do here.


I lean a lot on Yelp, I’ll systematically rifle through categories of food that interest me. I analyze by pictures quite often. I don’t read the reviews much. It’s a bit of work and I can have 200 tabs open for a new destination/city, whittling down takes time. I even do this periodically for Boston and NYC area, by cities and boroughs to make sure I don’t miss anything new. For Chinese I just have good luck and routinely drive by new places. Sometimes there’s chatter on WeChat. Eater does have good coverage but I am always pushing for that 5% extra that no one has seen yet. There is a site called hidden boston or something and it’s good but the website is really outdated crammed full of ads and I can’t even load it unless I use a crappy outdated browser so I never go there anymore. The operator is not a nice person anyway and likes terribly unhealthy food.

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Takes one to know one I suppose.

This is me, but it can get tiring. In my next life my spouse will do this for me and I’ll just go along for the ride.

I haven’t looked there in quite some time. I remember it as being a bit phantom gourmetish…a few gems mixed in with a lot of garbage and paid sponsors. I think I followed him on some social feed at some point.

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