Zaiaka Pittsburgh Review
Zaiaka Indian Restaurant924 Presque Isle Plaza
Route 286 East
Plum, PA 15239
Daily Lunch - 11:00 AM to 2:30 PM
Daily Dinner - 5:00 PM to 9:30 PM
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Zaiaka Pittsburgh Review: Average Food; Fine Chili Chicken; So-So Service
If the Indian community is growing in Pittsburgh, can Indian restaurants be far behind.
Zaiaka is a recent addition to the desi restaurant scene in Pittsburgh.
But then more Indian restaurants doesn't necessarily mean better Indian food.
Run by Meena Kumar, wife of a Manipal-trained doctor, Zaiaka offers a fairly extensive menu of North Indian dishes.
However, Zaiaka's food is a mixed bag - some blissful, some inedible.
Fine Chilli ChickenChili Chicken was a delight. It was cooked just right and had the right spiciness that Indian palates are accustomed to.
We also loved the Chicken Kofta (Chicken meat balls cooked in a thick gravy and garnished with fresh cream). It's not a dish seen often in Indian restaurants.
Below Average Chicken Saag, Chicken TikkaBut Chicken Saag and Chicken Tikka were below average.
On the vegetarian side also, there were more misses than hits.
Vegetarian ItemsMutter Paneer and Pakoras were delicious but Cabbage Fry, Okra and Dal were disappointments. In years of dining out, we've noticed that few Indian restaurants manage to get their Okra curries right.
Zaiaka's desserts were a big-time letdown.
Bad DessertsKulfi, Gulab Jamun and Rice Kheer were all below par. Rice Kheer wasn't cooked well and lacked enough sugar while the Gulab Jamun was very cold suggesting it had just been removed out of the fridge.
Pisttachio Kulfi ($3.15) came in a popsicle form and lacked the rich, creamy taste of the Kulfi that Indians of all ages are addicted to.
So, So ServicesUnlike the grouchy managers that are a common sight in most Indian restaurants, our hostess Meena Kumar was a cheerful soul frequently popping in to inquire about the food and whether we were comfortable. But Meena's enthusiasm was not matched by her assistants.
Our waitress did not bother to check if we had finished the Kulfi but snatched it off our table leaving us staring at her back in shock.
Another nagging irritation at Zaiaka was that our eating plates were dirty with small black smudges. Our alert hostess Meena also noticed them and sent them back to be cleaned again.
Zaiaka is located not too far from the famed Venkateswara Temple in Pittsburgh. - © PittsburghIndia.com
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