1 Beach Street, Narragansett | 401-363-9988
Hours: Daily, 11:30am-9:30pm | Meals Served: Lunch, dinner | Cuisine: Indian | Price Range: $11-$30 | Bar: BYOB | Kid Menu: No | Parking: Private lot | Reservations: Yes | Delivery: No | Take Out: Yes, with online ordering | Outdoor Seating: No | Ambience: Casual | Catering: On-site private events
For a taste of authentic Indian food in South County, visit Maharaja Indian Restaurant. Located in Aqua Blue in Narragansett, directly across from the sea wall, Maharaja is one of a very few restaurants serving Indian cuisine in the southern part of the state – but the food will have you coming back again and again.
For newcomers to Indian cuisine, there are a few basics you shouldn’t miss. Naan, similar to pita bread, comes in flavors like garlic and cilantro, and ginger and honey, or stuffed with paneer (like a mild feta cheese), chicken or lamb. It’s baked in a clay oven, and essential to any Indian meal. Start with some appetizers - don’t miss the samosas (deep fried turnovers stuffed with potatoes and peas, with vegetables, chicken or lamb) or pakoras (fritters with paneer cheese, vegetables or chicken). For your entree, try a Biryani, which is a onedish, rice-based meal that consists of layering rice and meat (pick vegetables, lamb, chicken, shrimp, goat or a combination) in a casserole and then baking it in the oven. Chicken Tikka Masala is probably the best known Indian dish, and that’s because it’s a sure winner: chicken roasted in the tandoor oven, with a creamy, savory sauce of tomatoes and herbs. Shrimp saag, a sauce of spinach, tomatoes and ginger, is another mild and delicious choice.
For those who know and love Indian cuisine, you’ll be surprised at how extensive Maharaja’s menu is, and how many selections you’ll find on the menu, which is regionally based in Northern India, that you won’t find many other places. Bhel Poori is a cold appetizer of rice flakes tossed with onions and tomatoes, then topped with tamarind and mint sauces. The Coconut Soup is made with milk, nuts and sweet spices. Maharaja has an extensive selection of tandoor choices, which can be appetizers for two, or entrees for one. The Kadhai Chicken is cubed chicken tikka cooked with peppers, tomatoes, onions and mushrooms in a traditional Indian pan, and is served sprinkled with freshly ground spices and herbs. Dal Makhni is black lentils cooked with fresh herbs and spices, sauteed in butter and garnished with fresh coriander. Or, choose from lamb, chicken, vegetables and fish curry, korma, saag or vindaloo, depending on your spice preference.
The proof of Maharaja’s quality is in its legions of happy customers. Yelp, normally a very tough critic, is heaped with praise from happy customers, who love both the food – there are an especially high number of guests who gush about the restaurant’s authenticity - and the service. Tourists say over and over how they wish they could eat at the restaurant more often. Lucky for you, it’s close enough to home that you won’t have to wait for your return visit to Maharaja.