A Taste of India
A Taste of India
The history of Indian restaurants in Luxor is a little complicated. The best known used to be a small restaurant called the Bombay, beyond the Isis hotel, more or less opposite 7Days7Ways, where the Petra travel agency is now. That restaurant is no longer there, but moved across the road, still called the Bombay, as part of a restaurant complex originally called 3Choices, then Asia House.
There is still a restaurant called the Bombay in that place, but it no longer has the same management. The ex-pat Brit who ran the original Bombay and started the new Bombay, now runs A Taste of India. The restaurant that still has the Bombay name has no management connection with the old one.
So if you remember the original Bombay, its replacement is A Taste of India, not the new Bombay. Got that? Never mind, what really matters is the new restaurant and the food it serves.
A Taste of India has been fitted out to a high standard. Originally in neutral colours it now has posters of India-related feature films hung on textured red and gold walls with tiling to the floors and counter. Tables are wood, covered with fresh white cloths, with matching wooden chairs. Waiters are smartly presented in all-black with open shirts and are quick to serve.
Inside A Taste of India
The menu is very full, and has the choices you would expect: both the European versions of Indian dishes, such as kormas, masalas, jalfrezis and saags, and the original Asian Indian meals, such as Malayan, madras and vindaloo as well as biriyani and tandoori alternatives. In each case the variety is available with a choice of meat, which determines the price, prawn being the dearest and chicken the cheapest, although there are also vegetable options that are cheaper still. Most of the meat and fish main courses are in the LE45-LE75 range.
There is also a small range of soups from LE12, appetizers and side dishes mostly between LE18 and LE28, breads from LE5 - LE18 and rices from LE12 - LE16.
If your party includes people who prefer to eat international dishes, these are available too. Traditional soups are from LE12 to LE16 and a choice of starters including salads and prawn cocktail are mostly LE12 - LE22. International main meals start with naan bread pizzas at LE22 and a range of pastas between LE25 and LE40. Steaks are from LE55 for a small one or LE75 for an 8oz. Sauce is LE8 extra. There is a small special children's menu with dishes between LE14 and LE20 and a good variety of desserts are between LE15 and LE24. The prices all include taxes but not service.
A good selection of alcohol is available from a well-stocked bar.
We have eaten 'European' indian meals in Europe and classic indian meals in India. The quality of the meat is probably better at A Taste of India than you would find at the average restaurant in the meals' homeland. We thought both indian varieties were as good at A Taste of India as you would expect at from an Indian eat-in. That is not to say it cannot be surpassed, but it compares well with good Indian restaurants in the 'west' and we have tasted worse within sight of the Taj Mahal.
The obvious place with which to compare the Taste of India in Luxor, outside the hotels, is the Bombay. We used to think that A Taste of India scored best on all counts, but that was when the Bombay was extremely Indian, and probably not the sort of place the average westerner would understand. Now that the Bombay has reverted to the sort of range and menu people from countries outside the Indian sub-continent would understand, the choice of restaurant is less straight-forward.
We find it hard to distinguish between them in terms of meat quality - both being pretty good. Availability is better at A Taste of India but the Bombay has slightly more of an 'Indian' atmosphere. So if subtle lighting is want you want, and you don't mind being flexible with your choice of meal, you may choose the Bombay. But if you want something specific it may not be available from the Bombay's more limited availability. And if you prefer to eat western style indian familiar to most Luxor visitors, rather than the more authentic but less familiar version at the Bombay, you will be very pleased with what you get at the Taste of India.
Review updated May 2013
Prices at April 2013