Indian Buffets [New England]

I don’t think we have a thread on this topic (and I think it deserves one). If the GMods want to merge this with an existing thread, they should please go ahead. (I’m all for minimizing thread creep.)

Maharaja, in Harvard Square, had an excellent, varied lunch buffet on weekends, before the fire, but a much less interesting one (at the same price) after they reopened. They got complaints (from me, at least) and their buffet two weekends ago was quite good: a decent goat curry (with tender meat), tasty malai (cream) chicken kebabs, a pretty good biriani, and an excellent carrot halwa. They have a chaat station, dosas, chole with the correct accompanying bread (bhatura), plus all the usual suspects: neon-red tandoori chicken and tikka masala, naan, saag paneer, etc. It’s not cheap at $15, but if you are a young buck or doe with a large appetite, you could do well here.

Punjabi Grill in Davis Square (Elm street) has a compact weekday buffet that’s very, very good in that the food is very, very tasty. I recommend going there as soon as they open. When the food runs out they do not replenish, and there’s nothing sadder than grabbing that last dried-out naan, and scraping out that last crust of what was once saag at 2:30. The chicken kadhai, in particular, is very tasty, and that’s true of most of their dishes. There’s not a lot of variety, but the execution of what they have is spot on. Their kheer (“rice pudding”) has the right caramelized milk, and their sooji (semolina) halwa is, correctly, insanely rich. [They do special foods at Eid time, but I have not been there then.]

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Ritu Ki Rasoi in Burlington has a small weekday buffet that I really enjoy. (I believe they have a bigger buffet on weekends, but I’ve never been.) The highlight for me is that they bring around freshly cooked dosas and often chapati as well. The restaurant is vegetarian, and there are usually a few curries, a dal, a sambar, desserts, and some other things that escape my memory at the moment.

Quite a while ago, we tried the buffet at Suvaai in Cambridge and enjoyed it; there were not many selections, but the food was good. Since then, the quality at dinner seemed to slip, so we haven’t been back. But I’m curious if anyone has recent experiences.

they do & it’s really good. they are also really diligent about putting up what it’ll have in it sometime before they open at 11:30 AM on their Facebook page.

They have also taken a break from their usual theme Wednesday night buffets since late July. I think they come back with a special theme night buffet for Indian independence day next week.

I’m ashamed to say that I have not yet been to RKR. Must rectify this.

The oddities of Suvaai deserve a dedicated thread. When they’re open the food can be very good (and it can sometimes be bad), but knowing when they’re open (and, if open, when they’ll have food) is a skill I have not mastered.

Holi in Bedford is fairly near our office and we enjoy the weekday lunch buffet there very much. There is a good selection, often replenished - at least on Fridays when we go. Freshly made naan is delivered to the table and refilled if you want. Our resident Indian colleague likes it quite a bit although he prefers Zaika in Woburn. Visiting Indian colleagues always profess to enjoy it but who knows if (a) they are just being polite or (b) anything beats our office lunch in their view.

You beat me to it, I would also have recommended these two. Don’t forget that most Indian restaurants let you do takeout from the buffet and that’s quite a good deal.

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Soul of India on Rte 20 in Sudbury has a fabulous Lunch and Dinner Buffet.

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Mayuri in Westborough does a solid lunch buffet business (can’t vouch for dinner as I’ve only gone for lunches around the office). I think it’s $12 or $13, with 4-5 main meat dishes and 7-8 vegetarian dishes, various small bites (fried vegetable fritters, etc) and a couple of dessert options. The garlic naan always look fresh, and refills come frequently. I’m a fan of their goat biryani when it’s in rotation.

Come to think of it, there are quite a few Indian restaurants in the stretch of Route 9 between Framingham and Westborough, but Mayuri and Paradise Biryani (don’t bother with the measly lunch buffet) were the only two I’ve tried; have anybody else sampled the offering?

When I was living in Chicago, mango ice cream was often part of the dessert line-up, but I have not seen it anywhere here - a real shame if I dare say so!


Forgot to mention here that the one time that I went to Godavari in Woburn, I really enjoyed it. Wide ranging buffet with some south Indian items that aren’t all that common around here. Would probably still choose Ritu Ki Rasoi for this general area, but Godavari is right solid too.

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The buffet at Godavari has shrunk significantly since they expanded.

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Virsa de Punjab in Bedford has a big lunch buffet with well cooked and seasoned dishes. Really tasty food.

Singh Ching in Burlington and Arlington has opened. I went to the Burlington location for the buffet today and it was excellent. This was previously the Chettinad Grill.

Does anyone have any experience with the Acton locale of Mayuri? I have an errand in Acton and I was thinking about checking it out. Is there a bar at which one can eat (which I know is not commonplace at Indian places; I’ll be alone and I feel more comfortable sitting at a bar when eating solo)?

I did a blog post a while ago and looking a the pictures I don’t remember a bar. What I do remember is the staff lining up against the wall, staring at the diners. The food was good and well seasoned. Check out the enormous Indian market next door.

I was always baffled by this style of service when we went to Indian places in Boston (and we particularly felt it at Namaskar in Davis Sq, which used to sadly always be empty despite having wonderful food)…until we went to India several years ago and experienced the same style of service almost everywhere we went. I gather that this might be the norm for service geared towards Westerners (albeit in our small sample).

I may have eaten at all the wrong places, but I have not experienced this particular style in India, ever, and only occasionally in the U.S. In Indian restaurants in the U.S., the staff are often inattentive, but I have not had them line up staring at me. Perhaps, though, it’s just a reflection on how unrewarding I am to look at. Digga and Ferrari328 are, I am sure, more beautiful.


For what it’s worth, the Mayuri in Westborough doesn’t have this style of service…but maybe the Westborough patrons are also lacking in beauty these days.

I had a terrible Sunday buffet at Maharajah in Harvard Square yesterday. Yes, the buffet is large in size (well over twenty covered covered dishes) but small in variety and entirely lacking in taste. Where to begin?

  1. The station where they once offered freshly made dosas is gone, replaced by a covered dish of limp mini-dosas.

  2. There’s still a chaat station, but the three things I sampled there were all lacking. The pani puri lacked the intense burst of different flavors and textures you expect from well composed ones, and the dahi-wada were dense little half-balls sitting in a yoghurt sauce that had clearly been ladled on at some late stage, with no time afforded for the wadas to absorb the yoghurt and soften. The bhel-puri was reasonably tasty, but skewed unidimensionally toward hot spice, with very little of the interplay of sweet and sour flavors you expect from good versions. And these were the highlights.

  3. Both the tandoori chicken and the onion chutney were dyed so deeply red that I was afraid that I’d be sweating and peeing red for days after. I do not understand why Indian restaurants in the US feel that their patrons must see red. Tandoori chicken, even at ordinary places in India, is not stained this way. In any case, I could forgive the intense color if it was matched by intense taste, but here it was a substitute. It was the worst tandoori chicken I’ve had in years – and given the level of Indian food in the U.S., that’s a big achievement.

  4. The dal, the chole and the vegetables all valiantly competed for last place in tastelessness. It was hard to pick a loser.

  5. The goat in the goat curry was uniformly tough. (Serving tough meat seems so easy to avoid that it always astonishes me how restaurants achieve this.)

  6. The naan was edible when hot, but thin and tasteless otherwise, more roti than naan.

I could go on, but why bother? Adding financial injury to the insult of the food is that the price of the buffet is now $18.80. At least that will make it easy from now on to just say no.


Oh dear, sounds awful, thanks for taking one for the team and letting us know! Where have you had good Indian buffet lately? It has been quite awhile but my co-workers and I have always had good experiences at Holi in Bedford.


A former work colleague used to love dragging us there for group lunches. No one had the guts to tell him that none of us liked that place. And this was back around 2011 so sounds like things have gotten even worse.