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Saturday, June 10, 2017

L.A. Biryani is where fast casual dining meets Indian cuisine in Santa Ana, California

The menu items in this post were provided by L.A. Biryani but the opinions expressed here are my own.

I am a huge fan of Indian cuisine! I love the aroma and flavors of different spices and how they come together for a balanced dish. In January 2017, L.A. Biryani debuted their fast-casual concept of Indian cuisine. You might think to yourself, “L.A. Biryani? But isn’t it located in Orange County?” L.A. inspired the concept with a melting pot of cultures and diversity of cuisines. If you are a purist, you may not care for this. They created the menu for folks who are clean-eaters (no artificial colors, preservatives, etc.) and use less oil, butter, and fats than traditionally for healthier eaters. Although, for a fast-casual concept, this place did not disappoint me. The way to think of L.A. Biryani is the “Subway” of Indian food where everything is made to order and they shoot to have orders out within five minutes.

The interior is bright with white tiled walls and contrasting bright orange and black chairs.

When you go to fill up your drink, you can peer into the kitchen as they make your order.

A sauce bar is available to add different flavors and also to adjust your level of spice.

Here is a look at some of the menu items:

Samosa Chaat ($4.99, vegetarian) is fried pastry with garbanzo beans, masala, tamarind, mint, sweet yoghurt, and fresh pomegranate. These crispy bites were filled to the brim and pack some heat. The garbanzo beans (chickpeas) added a flavorful, filling component. Rating: 4.3/5

Chicken Lollipop ($8.99) are fried chicken tulips served with curry leaves and lemon chili cilantro sauce. This was my favorite item on the menu! If you love chicken wings, you’ll love these. They were crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. The two dipping sauces worked great so you can control the balance of flavors with each bite. The chili sauce was spicy but not overly spicy. The yogurt sauce helped cool and refresh the palate. Rating: 5/5

Chicken Curry ($8.99) is a house special chicken dish cooked in curry sauce along with a freshly ground spice blend. This dish had a beautiful reddish, orange color. The spices not only made a beautiful color but flavored the dish with herbaceous, spicy, savory, and smoky notes. Order this dish with a side of rice as not to waste any of that sauce. Rating: 4.5/5

Lamb Biryani ($11.99) starts with rice pilaf topped with marinated boneless lamb and served with flavored yogurt and yellow gravy. The lamb was juicy and tender. The rice pilaf was flavorful and paired well with the lamb. The yellow gravy worked the best with this dish. The yogurt sauce had a cooling effect but a little too spicy which overpowered the lamb flavor. Rating: 5/5

Chicken Biryani ($8.99) starts with rice pilaf topped with bone-in marinated chicken and served with flavored yogurt and yellow gravy. The chicken had a nice flavor, especially since it was cooked on the bone. The yogurt sauce worked better with this dish. Rating: 4/5

Palak Paneer ($9.99, vegetarian) is chunks of cheese grilled then tossed in a pureed spinach sauce with house blend spices. This was the brightest green palak paneer I have ever seen. They use fresh spinach for the sauce so it retains the vibrant green color. Even with the greenness from the spinach, the sauce was rich and savory. This is another dish that you definitely want to order a side of rice to catch all of that sauce. Rating: 4.5/5

Kulfi ($1.99) is frozen thickened milk flavored with saffron and nuts. It tasted like ice cream. The saffron was very light but the sauce gave it a custardy feel. Rating: 4.1/5

Manilla Pastry ($2.99) is a layered chocolate cake with nuts and marshmallows along with cardamom white chocolate sauce and a scoop of kulfi. The chocolate cake was spongy and reminded me of a cake my mom used to make for me as a child. The white chocolate cardamom sauce made an interesting contrast of sweet and savory. The soft marshmallows, nuts, and creamy kulfi added textural contrast to the dessert. Rating: 4.1/5

If you’re looking for a healthy twist on Indian food, give L.A. Biryani a try!

Specials:

  • Happy Hour: 20% off beer and wine from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m.


Ambiance: 4 out of 5
D├ęcor: 4 out of 5 stars
Service: 5 out of 5 stars
Food: 4 out of 5 stars

For more information:
1631 E. 17th St. Unit I
Santa Ana, CA 92705
+1.657.218.4077
Reservations: None
Hours: Monday – closed; Tuesday through Thursday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sunday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Dog-friendly: Not sure, but they have patio seating
Delivery via GrubHub, Doordash, and EAT24

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L.A. Biryani Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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