I love Indian food. In fact, when I die, you can bury me in a vat of paneer masala. Indian food is categorically delicious: the flavors oscillate between sweet, spicy, and savory, and it melds creamy sauces with soft bread, tender meat, and vegetables to make something incredible. It’s a divine synthesis that is aromatic and sophisticated without being bougie, yet has something for every dietary inclination.
Recently, we were invited to the new Guru Kitchen + Bar downtown for their Date Night Experience. Almost equivocal to my love for Indian food is my adoration for date nights so you can imagine my excitement. Walking into Guru, you are instantly hit with that enticing aroma we all know and love, and you know you’re in for a treat. We did not leave disappointed.
Here is what you need to know about Guru Kitchen + Bar:
- It is located at 10111 104 Ave in Edmonton’s Ice District. They also have a location on 170th Street, which is their first in the city.
- They have unique cocktails that incorporate Indian herbs and spices. Each cocktail tells a story, which I appreciated. We did not try one cocktail we didn’t like, and all were beautifully presented. One standout is “The Guru,” made with Johnny Walker Blue Label, hibiscus, saffron, and is presented in a smoking chest (fancy, right?). Another favorite was the “Pride in India” made with Rampur Single Malt Whisky, ginger ale, and house spices.
- The menu is a modern twist on classic Indian food. They offer the traditional dishes you would typically expect, for example, butter chicken, beef vindaloo, and butter paneer. They also have some unexpected items like grilled duck with date and tamarind chutney, and a tandoori lamb chop served with rogan jus. I highly recommend the beef vindaloo. The beef and potatoes are cooked perfectly in an incredible sauce that I would happily even without the beef and potatoes. There are lots of vegetarian options on the menu as well, one of my favorites being the butter paneer, similar to butter chicken but made with paneer cheese. Menu prices are reasonable, and the portions are generous, so go hungry (and don’t say I didn’t warn you.)
- In addition to the mains, there are also sharing platters such as the Guru Chakna, which includes the irresistible fried Cauliflower 65, spinach chaat, and your choice of samosa. There’s also the India Papads & Crisps, an excellent alternative to chips and dip. My favorite is the chaat, a street-food inspired platter that is prepared at your table. Chaat is a mixture of potato, chickpeas, okra, wheat puffs, and fried crisps topped with tangy-salty spices and house chutneys. The textures and flavors will keep you coming back for more.
- The atmosphere is vibrant, chic, and inviting. One standout feature is the wine cellar, which is beautiful. The wine selection is also impressive, with everything from small independent producers from around the world, to more widely-known varieties. Wines are available by the bottle or the glass.
The Guru Date Night Experience is available at the downtown location for a limited time. The meal includes one appetizer, two entrees, saffron rice, garlic naan, and dessert for $49. To make reservations call: 780-399-8210.
If you decide to visit Guru, or already have, let me know what you think in the comments below!
This meal was not paid for and the thoughts and options are mine.