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Indian Ocean, Van Ness - North Indian in the old :-) Coat of Arms Space - Closed

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Thanks for that excellent review.

Do you know if they are open for lunch before the grand opening? (It's the only meal for which I am in Van Ness during the day)

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Thanks for that excellent review.

Do you know if they are open for lunch before the grand opening? (It's the only meal for which I am in Van Ness during the day)

Thank you, and you're quite welcome!

They are indeed open for lunch, and apparently they have been getting a good sized lunch crowd.

Bon Appetit!

Nanther

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Thank you, and you're quite welcome!

They are indeed open for lunch, and apparently they have been getting a good sized lunch crowd.

Bon Appetit!

Nanther

Excellent, I think you all know where I will be at lunchtime on Monday :angry:

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Ominous sign #1:

The ugly vinyl sign outside advertising a Champagne brunch.

Ominous sign #2:

The restaurant was empty - not one table or bar stool occupied - at 8:30 on Saturday night as I headed to Lucky Strike.

Ominous sign #3:

One table was occupied Sunday during the advertised brunch.

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Just got back from trying out their lunch buffet. Saw the sign mention in #1 above :angry:

They definitely need to work on their whole deal B)

Gonna give it another try in a few months.

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Gonna give it another try in a few months.

Somehow I don't think that's gonna be an option :angry:

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Sigh... One final shout out to TMB: Upper Northwest. Is there any interest?

Or, TMB: LAMEDUCKS. Wanna venture out of the 'hood and venture north to the dining nether region known as Van Ness?

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Wanna venture out of the 'hood and venture north to the dining nether region known as Van Ness?

Sorry, if it's not too late and this hasn't happened yet...I'm in!

Nanther

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Sorry, if it's not too late and this hasn't happened yet...I'm in!

Nanther

So far, I've gotten three takers. Now the hard part: deciding on a date.

Proposed: Tuesday, Sept 18; Tuesday, Sept 25; Wed Sept 19; or Thur Sept 27

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Just got back from trying out their lunch buffet. Saw the sign mention in #1 above :angry:

They definitely need to work on their whole deal B)

Gonna give it another try in a few months.

Sorry to hear your experience wasn't what you expected and I'm really glad that you'll be giving it another try in a few months.

We haven't been to the buffet yet but have been there to dinner at least once a week since they opened, and have had amazing experiences every visit.

They've been having been working on getting things in order post opening. As the cuisine is not typical of most Indian joints, Raj has had to get the staff used to the menu items. Sure they have some of the expected fare, but it's the stuff that isn't expected that will make any visit to Indian Ocean memorable.

Not, I'm not a compensated endorser, but I honestly believe that this place, given the fullness of time will become a dining destination the likes of Indique, or Heritage. I think its time is almost here.

The diners might have been sparse (but we've never seen it empty) the last few weeks, but last night, it was packed...with large groups - not the usual, pairs of diners one typically sees Friday nights. It probably helped that they finally launched their full menu yesterday.

For those who do venture here, make sure you speak to Raj if he's in. His passion for what he does, and for the food, is palpable. He will be more than happy to recommend dishes along with appropriate wine pairings.

Their website is still being worked on but you can access it here http://www.indianoceandc.com/.

Nanther

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As the cuisine is not typical of most Indian joints, Raj has had to get the staff used to the menu items. Sure they have some of the expected fare, but it's the stuff that isn't expected that will make any visit to Indian Ocean memorable.

I looked at the website, but the menu's not up yet. Could you describe the dishes that they offer that are not typical of most Indian joints/not expected?

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I looked at the website, but the menu's not up yet. Could you describe the dishes that they offer that are not typical of most Indian joints/not expected?

I knew I should have fully checked the website before I sent the link! B) Apologies. I'm currently at work, and don't have a copy of the takeout menu. I'll try and post some solid examples later today.

However I'm a big fan of seafood, in general, and to find an Indian restaurant serving such a large variety of it, is extremely gratifying. Most places do offer Goan-style curries with shrimp or salmon, but Ocean goes a fair bit further. Dishes like tandoori lobster, fish dishes (both tandoori and curry preparations) using something other than salmon (Alaskan halibut, for example), and seafood curries with lobster, scallops, squid and shrimp (in one dish!).

I had a soft-shell crab dish last night that I loved. Now, you have to understand...growing up in Singapore, I considered soft-shell crab...wimpy. My mother used to prepare an amazing curry with whole blue crab (if memory serves) that I attacked every time she made it. No mallets used...that's what teeth are for! Add to that South Indian style fish curries, deep-fried curried fish, and chilli tiger shrimp and you would understand why I had given up on finding good Indian-style seafood preparations. Granted, North Indian cuisine is quite different from South Indian cuisine, but gosh...I'll take what I can get.

For those who aren't keen on seafood, my current fave is their green chilli chicken. It's not terribly spicy (well, if you can handle a vindaloo or Madras curry, you'll be fine) but it's got great flavor with a nice bite. They also have an amazing smoked tomato soup. The tomatoes are smoked inhouse with cinnamon.

A lot of the condiments are homemade - the spicy lemon and sweet mango pickles - as are the desserts, like the pistachio ice cream or the mango, strawberry or banana sorbet (try the milaps, any one of them!).

Great...now I'm really hungry.... :angry:

Nanther

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Raj at Indian Ocean tells me they're still accepting reservations for New Year's Eve. He's added some new items to the menu just for the evening! I'm trying to get him to make them permanent additions.

I did persuade him to give me a copy of the menu for the evening (see attached).

My wife and I definitely plan to make an evening of it. Hope to see some DR folks there as well!

Indian Ocean

4221 Connecticut Ave NW

Washington, DC 20008

(202) 362-4444

I'm just a customer...honest!

Nanther

Indian_Ocean_NYE_Menu_2009.pdf

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Just got word Indian Ocean has closed. It was great neighborhood hangout, and in my opinion, one of the best Indian restaurants in the city.

The owner is fine, and managed to sell the place on short order to someone who wants to open a Caribbean restaurant. As much as I'll miss Indian Ocean (you have no idea how much!), I am intrigued to have some island cuisine in my neighborhood.

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Just got word Indian Ocean has closed. It was great neighborhood hangout, and in my opinion, one of the best Indian restaurants in the city.

The owner is fine, and managed to sell the place on short order to someone who wants to open a Caribbean restaurant. As much as I'll miss Indian Ocean (you have no idea how much!), I am intrigued to have some island cuisine in my neighborhood.

Not surprised by this since the place was chronically empty...And I'm sorry, but their Indian food was mediocre at best.

I am interested to see what the Caribbean restaurant has to offer.

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I know I know, say nothing but good things about the dead, but, after being intrigued by this place driving by (my daughter lives nearby), I did go there for lunch one Saturday afternoon. The place was quite empty and, after being pressed hard to take the buffet rather than ordering ala carte, I found the fare on the buffet to be underwhelming at best...it is quite possible that, by that time (just a month or so ago), the kitchen staff was just phoning it in, but I found it to be very lowest-common-denominator generic steam table Indian.

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it is quite possible that, by that time (just a month or so ago), the kitchen staff was just phoning it in, but I found it to be very lowest-common-denominator generic steam table Indian.

DItto, hate to pile on, but I'm surprised it lasted as long as it did. I got takeout a couple of times when I was really craving Indian food (before Masala Art opened) and it was meh to awful. The place always seemed dark and unwelcoming and there was rarely more than one table occupied. However, I will say the staff was very nice.

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I used to work across the street from Indian Ocean, and tag team between Indian Ocean and Delhi Dhaba when I wanted Indian. Both were mediocre, but not many lunch choices around. One time, some years back, I had such a bad meal at Indian Ocean I never went back and only went to Delhi Dhaba until that closed down...until last November when some colleagues wanted to take me out to lunch at Indian Ocean. Well, I couldn't refuse. It turned out to be delicious! I don't know when the turnaround came, but I guess also too little too late.

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