Paratha Wala is a fabulous new addition to the Forest Hills dining scene. Named for the baker of India’s famous paratha bread, this brand-new restaurant emulates an entire street in Delhi where the finest paratha walas have their shops. The serene dining room features brick walls, stainless steel and saturated colors to reflect the hometown shops of the amiable owner, A.M.F. Shehab Hossain. A mere 28 years old, Shehab came to the US for university and his MBA, all while working in the hospitality industry. From there he developed his love of fine food and making guests feel welcome, and you will, at Paratha Wala.
Paratha Wala was in the planning stages in January, and Shehab worked tirelessly, along with help from collaborators Ed Mundo on design, and Sajal Dutta. Just as he was preparing to open in March…boom! Thankfully, you can dine outdoors now on clean, spaced tables and in a couple of weeks you can dine indoors as well. The “open kitchen” showcases its cleanliness and the fresh ingredients that Chef Sital Patel uses in the preparation of her fine Indian-fusion cuisine.
Paratha Wala’s menu offers many vegetarian and vegan options so anyone can find their favorites here. In addition, all meats are halal, which means that they are of the highest standards. My companion and I started with a platter of delicious, sweet chili chicken wings that were sprinkled with sesame seeds and served with horseradish dipping sauce on a bed of crunchy slaw ($7.95). A house favorite appetizer is the kale fritters, and we couldn’t agree more, owing to the fresh, verdant patties that are lightly fried in chickpea batter, not heavy or greasy, served with yogurt-mint sauce ($6.95). Samosas are traditional pastries filled with potato, green peas, and peanuts, fried to a golden finish and served with tamarind sauce. The lentil dumplings are another great vegetarian option and for pescatarians and omnivores, the juicy crab cake is full of sweet crabmeat with sriracha aioli and slaw ($12.95). Delhi is famous for street food and Paratha Wala’s paratha rolls are the perfect example of a portable, eat-with-your-hands treat. Thin, whole wheat bread is wrapped around savory fillings that include chicken with pickled onion, eggs, fish, and masala potato with mild spices. Our paratha lamb roll was rich and savory with flavors and mild spices, mixed with pickled onion, greens, cucumber, and yogurt-mint sauce for dipping ($10.95). These rolls make an excellent lunch, dinner, or appetizer when shared.
Enjoy a healthy “Bowl” at Paratha Wala composed of mixed greens, onions, tomatoes, cucumbers, and radish with your choice of protein, be it salmon, shrimp, chicken, crab, or paneer made of homemade cheese. What a healthy way to eat and all dishes here are available at your level of spice desired. Choose from mild to slightly hot, hot, and crazy hot for folks like me who enjoy a kick, and the Chef will happily oblige.
Entrées at Paratha Wala are all made to order with fresh ingredients and to your spice level. We devoured the coconut shrimp curry with mild spice in a creamy coconut sauce that was perfect to soak up with fluffy basmati rice and warm bread. Butter chicken is a classic dish made with a creamy tomato sauce and chicken curry is boneless and so savory. Saag paneer is a vegetarian dish of spinach, kale, and fresh cheese with roasted garlic while chana masala is composed of spiced chickpeas, an excellent vegan dish which tasted great over rice.
Bread plays an integral role in Indian cuisine and is ordered separately and made fresh on the spot. Garlic paratha is made from whole wheat flour and scented with lots of garlic, and aloo paratha is stuffed bread filled with potato and served with raita yogurt sauce. There’s a fruit and nut paratha served with honey that could be a dessert.
Speaking of dessert, you must try the homemade keer, rice pudding made with Shehab’s mom’s recipe. Gulab jamun are condensed milk dumplings in sweet syrup or order the mango mousse cake. Enjoy a soft drink with your meal or a cool mango or rose flavored lassi, which is a yogurt drink that is very refreshing.
Paratha Wala is open seven days a week for lunch and dinner from 11am to 10pm and 11pm on weekends. Dine outdoors, indoors very soon, or have your order delivered for fast, free delivery. Order online from their sleek website and see photos of the beautiful dining room. With fresh, flavorful, creative Indian-fusion cuisine, and friendly service delivered by Raj, you can’t miss with a meal at Paratha Wala.
BYOB coming soon and welcome to the neighborhood!
103-09 Metropolitan Avenue
Forest Hills | 347.561.5319