Taj Mahal Surprises With Outsider Charm and a Mystery Woman

Aloo chat

Like everyone, I tend to overlook the restaurants out there that have been around forever, imagining a tired menu and service worn thin by too many years of sameness.

So, when a restaurant in this category actually wins me over, I tend to springboard in the opposite direction and spread the good news like Scrooge on Christmas morning. All of which is to say that while I may have slogged through the door at Taj Mahal last night, I emerged transformed.

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Vegetarian curry and lamb vindaloo

Let us begin with Taj Mahal’s location as opposed to its internal ambiance: outside it’s a study in everything that stinks about strip-mall culture, but inside, what’s not to love? Think mini-chandeliers and bedazzled paintings of lounging maharajahs. Like outsider art, the paintings are kitschy without intending to be and provide plenty of distraction during the post-ordering doldrums.

I decided to hit all the basics by starting vegetarian with aloo chat and veggie samosas and working my way into lamb vindaloo, vegetarian curry, and naan. The chat caught me off-guard with its freshness and bright flavors. In truth, I could have made a meal of just samosas and chat. As for the rich and spicy vindaloo and veggie curry – let’s just say that I had to forcibly stop myself from finishing all of it (one must have a little left over for lunch the next day).

To be fair, the service had its bright spots but was a pretty uneven, like when our server excitedly suggested the organic beer on the menu but then forgot to bring it. That is, until a young woman (possibly a teenage daughter of the owner) arrived and appeared beside our table. I don’t know who she was — her job seemed to hover somewhere in the hostessing department — or what kind of good mojo she was emanating, but if the owners could find a way to spread her natural delightfulness around a little (and possibly lose the dark curtains), Taj Mahal could experience a serious second wind spurred on by strikingly good food and sunny vibes.

7 comments on “Taj Mahal Surprises With Outsider Charm and a Mystery Woman

  1. This place is indeed a study in contrasts. The exterior looks like a Frank Gehry structure hit by a cluster bomb. The furniture is all either broken, bent or creaky. However, the food! Whoever chefs here is very careful about the cooking and seasoning of the food and the prices are very reasonable. Sure is is (generally) stereotypical Indian items but it is well done, and a great neighborhood asset.

  2. Taj Mahal has served the Dallas metro for about 26 yrs now. I enjoy their food they do such an outstanding job every time i carter from them. They work with you to find the right menu for a well fitted price. Nothing else i could ask for…!

  3. I have been their customer since 2007 and love their food and decor and it matches the interior of this restaurant.It is very economical as compared to other Indian restaurants but the food is outstanding,I must say its best amongst all others.

  4. I went to Taj Mahal today for lunch, and it was unbelievable! Not only is the food delicious, but the service is awesome. It’s very obvious that they have been established for a long time, and are very conscious about preparing their food properly. I even asked if they have Baba Ganoush, and the chef asked me for the recipe. He’s going to call me when they have it!! Mr. Charanjit is the owner of the restaurant, and he came out to make sure I was enjoying the food and doing well. Now, that’s good service!

  5. I usually go to this place during lunch buffet and never found any problem with food or service.Both are always great and the best thing is that its cheap compared to other Indian restaurants in the Metroplex.The interior is romantic and the pictures placed over the wall depict a perfect blend of love.I would suggest critics to do something useful instead of blaming someone.

  6. Ben, C’mon! There is nothing really good with the lunch buffet (here or any other Indian restaurant). The Taj does provide good, straightforward Indian nosh, but I would never consider the artwork “a perfect blend of love”. Perhaps Mr Charanjit (or another family member) got carried away here!

  7. have not been to their restaurant yet, but I was at a party they catered and was so delighted with their food, I wanted to find the restaurant. Fantastic, I will travel across town to eat there.