Gryphon Tea Room

337 Bull St. Savannah, GA 31401 • (912) 525-5880 • scad.edu/experience/gryphon

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Savannah is no stranger to stunning, historic architecture, but when you combine that with the skilled eyes of the interior designers as SCAD (Savannah College of Art & Design) you wind up with something truly special. And so, this apothecary from the early 1900’s has gone through an extraordinary transformation to become a lunch destination not to be missed. From the leather bound library encircling the dining room, to the rich, ornate, hand-carved wood moldings, to the original stained glass windows you can’t help but fall in love with the setting.

But what makes the Gryphon truly worthy is that it doesn’t rest on its traffic-stopping decor, although it easily could. No, just like its overachieving owner, the Gryphon delivers in spades. My onion, apple and leek quiche was excellent, upstaging a rather good goat cheese salad which I ordered to accompany it. And equally impressive was the smoked salmon club sandwich. Fresh and perfectly balanced, I honestly don’t know which I liked better. Plus, the cucumber salad as a side was a great choice next to the salmon.

Our lattes of both coffee and chai lineage were also delicious, but I suppose that should be expected from a place entitled a “tea room.”

Dessert was the only thing we had that wasn’t a “wow face.” The apple and pear crumble with spiced ginger ice cream, while good, lacked the strong contrast of texture and flavor that makes for truly memorable crumbles. But then, as a nice holiday surprise, one of the waiters brought us their own, homemade holiday ginger cookies along with the check, and have to say, those cookies were as good as any I’ve ever had.

So I’m going with a rock solid 4 knives, standing tall… If only they were also opened for dinner too… sigh.

4 teeth

Indikitch

25 W 23rd St. New York, NY 10010646) 590-7152 • indikitch.com

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From the decor to the menu it’s basically Chipotle for Indian food. So much so that Chipotle could probably sue for copyright infringement.

That said, because nobody knows Indian food as well as Mexican, EVERYTHING has to be explained to EVERYONE. So it literally takes forever to order- basically rendering the fast-service concept moot. This is SO bad in fact, that I literally left the first time I went because one person in front of me took over 10 minutes just to place her order. And she still wasn’t finished when I left! For all I knew, she could’ve still been there when I returned days later- but lucky for me, I went at an off time and went right to the front of the line. I highly recommend doing this if you still choose to go after reading the rest of my entry.

So, now for the food. It’s eh at best. The raves of this place are a shocking commentary on how woefully easy to please most people are when it comes to food. The nan was dry. The vindaloo FAR from spicy- and I even asked for the extra spicy version. Sorry, but vindaloo is supposed to be doubly spicy as is. So if you ask for extra spicy it should be like lava. This was like curry flavored water.

As for the sides, the rice was over cooked and the cucumber salad was bland.

The only thing that was worthy of note was the blood orange lemonade. Far superior to Num Pang’s.

But in terms of Indian, if you really want to taste something worthy of 5 stars, just head a few blocks Southeast to Tamarind. It’s my favorite Indian in the city and it makes this place look like exactly what it is… a gimmick.

2 teeth