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Kabob Kafe--Lombard

Kabob Kafe--Lombard
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  • Kabob Kafe--Lombard

    Post #1 - July 29th, 2004, 10:35 pm
    Post #1 - July 29th, 2004, 10:35 pm Post #1 - July 29th, 2004, 10:35 pm
    Butterfield Road, between Highland and Finley, has a thousand restaurants, each less appealing than the next Bucca di Beppo, TGI Friday's, Red Lobster, Hooters, Joe's Crab Shack. The nadir, of course, is Cheeseburger in Paradise, where, we're told by the Tribune, people line up for an hour before it opens, and may have to wait three hours for a table at dinner time. But there is no need for chowist despair. Roosevelt Road, along the same stretch, is moving toward becoming the Devon or Western Avenue of the suburbs, a place where small ethnic groceries and restaurants abound.

    We've always been intrigued by the dueling Indo-Pak restaurants that face each other across Main Street at the corner of Main and Roosevelt in Lombard. Bombay Express's sign says 'A New Concept in Fast Food.' The Kabob Kafe advertises 'A New Tradition in Fast Food.' Both advertise that they serve only halal/zabiha meats.

    This should be a report comparing the two. Unfortunately, when we walked into the Bombay Express Sunday night it smelled so strongly of vomit that we turned around and left. We hope the problem was temporary, because the menu we grabbed as we backed out makes it look interesting. Biryani by the plate or by the pan, vindaloos, masalas, paneers. Something I'm not familiar with, chicken or lamb 'shahi quorma.' Plus kabobs, falafel, tandoori. Plus burgers, gyros, and chicken nuggets!

    So, despite our good intentions to try someplace new, we returned to the Kabob Kafe, which we've adored for a long time. The menu here is much more limited, mostly kabobs and appetizers, though they do offer a parantha billed as a 'tandoori pizza' that would be worth trying. I was in the mood for soup, but decided against it when I noticed that their sign said 'canned soup, guaranteed all vegetarian.' We also skipped the hummus this time, though it's wonderfully smooth and garlicky and one of the reasons we come back so faithfully. We can also recommend the samosas from past trips.

    Bill ended up with the dinner special, a skewer each of their kabobs-- beef, kafta, chicken, and lamb-- served with rice, a wonderful middle eastern salad, and naan fresh from the tandoor for $6.95. I got the dolmas, which you can request hot or cold (I opted to have them heat them up, no doubt in the microwave). The dolmas were vegetarian, which is a step down from my favorites, which are made with ground lamb, and I suspect not made in house, but they were excellent. Very minty, which is not a flavor I've had in dolmas before. Mine also came with the rice, salad, and naan. $5.95. We pepped up the rice with their squeeze bottles, which include, I think, tahini, a mint chutney, and something orange and sweet and sneakily hot - maybe a tamarind chutney? We didn't try them, but they also have mango lassies (is that really the plural of lassi?) and shakes. An excellent new tradition in fast food.

    Bombay Express
    1271 S. Main
    Lombard, IL
    630 705 1605

    Kabob Kafe
    1500 S. Main
    Lombard, IL
    630 627 6112
  • Post #2 - July 29th, 2004, 10:48 pm
    Post #2 - July 29th, 2004, 10:48 pm Post #2 - July 29th, 2004, 10:48 pm
    shahi quorma/korma is chicken or lamb or beef stewed in a cashew/coconut cream sauce or a garlic/ginger/almond sauce

    I love the kabob kafe. The naan and hummos are both absolutely wonderful, especially together.

    for what it's worth, the soup is campbell's, condensed I think. enough said.

    oh, and I think it's 'lassis'
    -ed
    Ed Fisher
    my chicago food photos

    RIP LTH.
  • Post #3 - July 29th, 2004, 10:52 pm
    Post #3 - July 29th, 2004, 10:52 pm Post #3 - July 29th, 2004, 10:52 pm
    In the otherwise surprisingly interesting cafe in the giant (is there any other kind?) Cabela's store in Mitchell SD, there's a big sign above the soup tureens declaring that they are from Campbell's. I took a pass.
  • Post #4 - July 30th, 2004, 10:06 am
    Post #4 - July 30th, 2004, 10:06 am Post #4 - July 30th, 2004, 10:06 am
    I'm from that area of the western burbs, and it has changed a lot since I was a kid. There are a ton of good cheap Indian places the have spring up in the last 5 years or so. Bombay Express is OK. I think I like it more for the concept (an Indian fast food place) that the actual food and service.

    My favorite place in the area though is called Banda E Nawaz. It's in Oakbrook Terrace/Villa Park in a little strip mall with a White Hen on Summit between Butterfield and Roosevelt. The owner claims it has been there near two years, but I never noticed it until I recently when I was forced to use the laundromat in the mall. Everything on the menu is less than $4, including their Briyani which is the specialty of the house. I also enjoy their sandwiches which are all $2.50 or less.
  • Post #5 - July 30th, 2004, 11:00 am
    Post #5 - July 30th, 2004, 11:00 am Post #5 - July 30th, 2004, 11:00 am
    Giallo wrote:.

    My favorite place in the area though is called Banda E Nawaz. It's in Oakbrook Terrace/Villa Park in a little strip mall with a White Hen on Summit between Butterfield and Roosevelt


    Thanks for the heads-up. I looked up the address--it's right at the corner of Summit and 14th

    Banda-E-Nawaz

    17W612 14TH ST,VILLA PARK,IL,60181
    630 889 0786
  • Post #6 - August 2nd, 2004, 2:16 pm
    Post #6 - August 2nd, 2004, 2:16 pm Post #6 - August 2nd, 2004, 2:16 pm
    I shall check these out soon. My favorite west suburban Indian fast food is Ruchi on Ogden a little east of Washington in Naperville. They have struggled getting started, but seem to be hitting their stride. Two veg curries, rice, and a small sauce (yogurt or one of a couple of chutneys, usually including a nice coconut chutney) for $3.99. For a few bucks more you can sub meat dishes, add naan, or order straight from the menu, which includes some dosas and other pretty decent things. Well-spiced and very edible, it is weaning me from Indian Buffets. But it is not exacty delectable, or that close to Roosevelt, of course.
    d
    Feeling (south) loopy

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