On any given day in Washington, D.C. there are hundreds of restaurants to choose from, but Indique in Cleveland Park requires your attention. Chef K. N. Vinod isn’t new to the culinary scene. His passion for Indian cuisine spans more than 20 years. Training under greats like French Chef Roger Moncourt, who is credited with introducing French cuisine to India, Chef Vinod also attended The Culinary Institute of America. Both of these experiences led him to develop his own style, evident in Indique’s grand re-opening and its entire revamped menu.
Indique is decorated with bright, bold colors. Upon walking in, take an immediate right and head to the bar. Here, bartenders will capture your taste buds with cleverly named cocktails thanks to Carlie Steiner, a graduate of The Culinary Institute of America as well, whose company Stir Bartending Co. is changing D.C.’s craft cocktail scene one drink at a time. We sipped on a Tellisherry constructed of infused black pepper gin, aromatic fino sherry and aperol. The bar space is a wonderful way to people watch and catch up with friends along Connecticut Avenue, one of the busiest streets in D.C.
Indique’s cuisine focuses on India’s northern and southern areas, providing a unique twist on classic dishes. Papri chaat, from the north, is a popular street food prepared with lightly fried, crisp flour wafers mixed with potatoes, chickpeas, yogurt, tomatoes, and onions.
At the direct opposite end of the country is a dish referred to as achari chicken as well as achari paneer. Fenugreek, a plant native to countries such as India, when dried can be used to pickle various foods. Along with mustard, red chili, and vinegar, chicken is placed inside a flattened piece of baked paratha. Looking for more of a communal feel when dining with a group? Order the chicken biryani prepared with garam marsala and basmati rice.
A few must tries are the cauliflower chili fry, sweet potato chaats, and Kerala shrimp and lobster bisque. The latter is so delicious that no matter how hot it gets during the next few months, you’ll always order a cup. Come and embrace the explosion of flavors that Indique executes in ways that will blow your mind.
Photos by Jai Williams
3512-3514 Connecticut Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20008