My husband and I headed to Vermilion, an Indo-Latin establishment, for Restaurant Week which included a 3 course meal for $35 per person (drinks excluded).
Located in Midtown Manhattan, Vermilion is the melding of Indian and contemporary Latin American cuisines.
480 Lexington Ave.
New York, NY 10017
Other Location – Chicago
MENU: Vermilion Menu
CUISINE: Indo-Latin, Indian, Latin
RECOMMENDED TO: Bar Scene, Lounge, Couples, Fine Dining, Groups, Romantic Dining.
Vermilion is a classy restaurant & lounge. Personally, I think it’s a great place to meet working professionals.
The decor is chic and modern, I loved the look with a splash of red every now and then.
We each started with a drink. I went for the Mango Mojito. It was good, smooth, and had a nice & subtle mint flavor.
My husband went for the Fresh Lime Pear and Green Chili, his drink was good, quite spicy, but not something I would order again. I don’t think I can handle a spicy drink followed by spicy food.
We each started with an appetizer. I ordered the Pakora Fritters Basket which is an assortment of vegetables (eggplant, avocado, artichoke), dipped in flour, and then deep fried.
I have to say the Fried Avocado Pakora was sooooooo good, it’s like nothing I’ve ever had before, crispy on the outside, and soft on the inside. Heavenly!
My husband went for the Naan Tandoor Chicken Sandwich which resembles a tuna salad, but it tastes like chicken. It was delicious and slightly spicy, but it lacked the tandoori red color and flavor that I was hoping for. They might as well have named this dish, “Naan Chicken Salad Sandwich.”
For entrees, I went for the Tawa Subzi, a Bombay specialty also referred to as Pav Bhaji. Pav is bread, while Bhaji is a curry consisting of onions, potatoes, peas, cooked in a tomato sauce. The Tawa Subzi was extremely spicy so I wasn’t able to really taste the flavors. It wasn’t as authentic as the real thing, in addition, the gravy wasn’t thick enough, but rather more liquefied. A touch of butter would have helped in adding an element of richness, and a little thickness to the gravy. Authentic Pav Bhaji will always incorporate a touch of butter in the “bhaji” and then topped off with fresh cilantro. Huge let down!
My husband went for the Hariyali Chicken Curry which means Green Chicken Curry. The dark chicken was tender and cooked in a mint-cilantro gravy. This dish was light and flavorful. It came with a side of Basmati Rice, but there was no Raita (Indian yogurt) as suggested. My husband loved this dish and thought it was “amazing,” and I’d have to agree.
Lastly, there was only 1 option for dessert. Love the presentation on this Avocado Beignet.
Allow me to explain, on the right corner is the Blueberry Sorbet infused with Cardamom – light and delicious. Who would have thought of pairing blueberries and cardamom?
On the left side – a battered concoction of cream cheese, chocolate, and avocado – holy f*%$! Who comes up with these pairings? So incredibly delicious! This is precisely why I love (and need) to dine out so I can learn about different combinations and apply them to my cooking adventures. This fried cream cheese/chocolate/avocado combination was scrumptious. Pair this with the Blueberry Sorbet and you have got a melody of flavors so pleasing to the palette. This dessert was to die for!
VERDICT: 3.5 / 5
Vermilion is an upscale and trendy restaurant with a lounge-like feel to it. If you are a foodie and into trying new combinations of flavors, I do recommend trying Vermilion at least once. The food here is extremely creative. In my opinion, Vermilion has more of an Indian influence than Latin influence.
The drinks were good and slightly on the higher end at $14 per drink. I probably should have been a bit more adventurous with their Indian inspired drink choices, such as the Pani Puri Margarita. The food was good, very innovative, and well presented, although the portions were underwhelming and disappointing. Typically, you’ll find that when dining out, Indian food can be extremely greasy, not quite so at Vermilion. The food was well-prepared with minimal fat, but the Tawa Subzi could have used a little butter. 🙂
Regarding the service, the hostess promptly attended to us and seated us, however the wait for our food took F.O.R.E.V.E.R! We waited about 1/2 hour to get our appetizers, and another 1/2 hour to get our entrees – we were starving by the time the entrees rolled around! In addition, the small portions didn’t help alleviate the situation. For a restaurant that claims to be upscale and sophisticated, they seriously need to rethink their painfully slow service.
With that thought, if you are into trying unique flavors, definitely consider checking out Vermilion at least once, but I’m warning you, BE PREPARED TO WAIT!!!
Service: Below Average
Value: Below Average
TELL ME: Have you ever been to Vermilion or tried an Indo-Latin restaurant? If so, what’s your favorite dish?