After work, Kelly and I stopped in fremont to check out a wedding photographer (who was WAY too expensive), went climbing at Stone Gardens, and then stopped in lower Queen Anne for Indian food. There’s a little place across the street from Phuket (that word isn’t nearly as fun to say now that I know the correct pronunciation) called Roti.

Roti opened up about two or three years ago when I used to live right down the street but I had never stopped by. I think the biggest reason was because there seemed to be no private space inside the restaurant. Despite going to lengths to dress up the interior, it seemed as if the owners tried to cram as many tables as they could into the box like shape. I always assume restaurant owners do this because they are trying to fit in as many people as possible to make the most money possible. The problem is that it has the exact opposite effect, at least in this country.

I see this most often in Asian influenced restaurants. Just walk through Chinatown and you’ll see resutaurant after restaurant where tables are slammed next to each other with bright flourescent white lights beating down on the customer. One great example of this is in White Center at pho tai. The food at pho tai is excellent. The best Vietnamese I’ve ever had, but there is enough white light in that building to make a diner feel that a nuclear bomb just went off.

On top of this, they tend to not feel particularly clean. Notice that i did not say that they aren’t clean. Maybe they are clean, but the messiness makes my mind wonder. This is a shame because it ruins what could be a good dining experience, at least for me.

But enoguh rambling.

When Roti opened it was dead. Always dead. For months I rarely saw anybody eating int his place. I thought for sure that it would go out of business. I never went in myself and after last night, I wish I would have. The food is outstanding.

Kelly and I ordered garlic naan, lentil soup and a green salad to start. The naann was soft and flaky on the edges and huge. The lentil soup was super tasty, but the salad was the biggest surprise. Mango, apples, fresh greens, thin slices of tomato and cucumbers covered in a light dressing made it delicious.

For the main course we had Lamb Saag (curry with creamy spinach) and chicken biryani. Both were amazing and I woudl even say that roti is the best Indian food I’ve ever had, save for the homemade Indian our friend Selva B once made us. The only downside of roti was the waiter service, which happened to be the owner. He never stopped by and I even had to go up to the counter to get our bill (he seemed like a jackass, as well). However, I’m willing to let that slide because the food was so good. I should also say that the owners wife did stop by once to ask how everything was and the other serivce was great.

Well, that was a lot longer than I intended it to be…