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Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Seattle's Most-Anticipated Indian Restaurant EVARRR Opens Today Tomorrow (Probably!)

Posted by on Tue, Dec 4, 2012 at 8:41 AM

Moved up because WRONG: The opening has reportedly been delayed until tomorrow (Wednesday), though official word is "later this week." Delays like this are so routine, it seems odd that any restaurant actually sets an opening date anymore.

FREAK the hell OUT, people—Shanik is here at last SOON, really! And here's a menu. Seriously, it's going to be really good.



Comments (38) RSS

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Be still my beating heart! This is a great day for Seattle.
Posted by gloomy gus on December 3, 2012 at 7:42 AM · Report this
Posted by Foonken2 on December 3, 2012 at 7:46 AM · Report this
Pope Peabrain 3
Hmmm. That menu makes my mouth water.
Posted by Pope Peabrain on December 3, 2012 at 7:51 AM · Report this
Terry Ave North, not Terry Ave. The google map at the restaurant page on the Stranger has it on First Hill.
Posted by Wrong on December 3, 2012 at 7:59 AM · Report this
That's it. I'm moving to Seattle.
Posted by Prettybetsy on December 3, 2012 at 8:28 AM · Report this
seatackled 6
That menu doesn't give me a clue if I can afford it (though I guess it's not in a high rent district, so maybe I can try it) and is just fucking hard to read with that low contrast lettering and background. Seriously, they need to hire a webdesigner or something.

Whoops. Forget it. I found the link to their Canadian restaurant and the prices there run in the mid to high 20s for main dishes. Granted, that's Canadian bucks, but I'm guessing it's going to be too expensive for me.
Posted by seatackled on December 3, 2012 at 8:29 AM · Report this
@, worth saving up for a special occasion, then. You WILL find it money very, very well spent.
Posted by gloomy gus on December 3, 2012 at 8:39 AM · Report this
Fnarf 8
@6, there's a reason their prices are that high. They used to be downright cheap when they opened, but when there's a line out the door every single night, all night, they started raising them and raising them -- and yet the place was packed to the walls every night. Tells you something.

My fondest hope is that their presence here will cause Seattle Indian restaurants to up their game. It's nothing like as dire as it was twenty years ago here, but it's still predominantly Glop City, in Seattle at least.
Posted by Fnarf on December 3, 2012 at 8:50 AM · Report this
@Fnarf - Have you tried Traveller's Thali House on Beacon Hill? They've got interesting Indian food that's much more inventive than the standard fare.
Posted by Thali House on December 3, 2012 at 8:54 AM · Report this
Fnarf 10
@9, nope. Perhaps I shall. I have a reason to go to Beacon Hill now, for the first time ever, so maybe I'll stop in.
Posted by Fnarf on December 3, 2012 at 9:00 AM · Report this
Instead of McNuggets I got 1 lb fish pakora at Jot Indian Sweets on Kent East Hill for watching SNF. Kent East Hill is a mecca for many Indian natives, especially Punjabi.…

Posted by Supreme Ruler Of The Universe http://_ on December 3, 2012 at 9:04 AM · Report this
seatackled 12
@7, @8

Grumble, grumble. I guess I'll have to keep it on my list, then. My ceiling's usually something around $10-15 per dish, and that ain't something I can do much more than once a week. I guess I could think about skipping a week or two and then splurging there. Or go to Anapurna a couple of times instead.
Posted by seatackled on December 3, 2012 at 9:35 AM · Report this
Simone 13
The website reminds me of Pagemill. I miss my youthful old days of playing on the home computer with those early adobe software.

A simple site works. But, could use larger text and some sort of transparent block blocking the wallpaper so that the text is easier to read.
Posted by Simone on December 3, 2012 at 9:37 AM · Report this
biffp 14
Agree with @8. You can all pull typical Seattle self righteous crap, but Raj's is world famous because it's good.

@11, looks delicious. The best Indian place I went to in NYC was dirt cheap and run by a Bangladeshi.
Posted by biffp on December 3, 2012 at 9:38 AM · Report this
stinkbug 15
@6: It's U.S. law that restaurants must have sub-par websites. Among the regulations: at least 50% of restaurants sites must incorporate flash into their site and at least 85% of restaurants sites must offer only PDF versions of menus.
Posted by stinkbug on December 3, 2012 at 9:49 AM · Report this
Max Solomon 16
reservations would be nice. its going to be the same deal as Vij's, you'll need to show up when it opens.
Posted by Max Solomon on December 3, 2012 at 9:59 AM · Report this
That menu certainly sounds divine.
Posted by MLM on December 3, 2012 at 10:21 AM · Report this
what kind of indian restaurant serves pork and beef?
Posted by qrq on December 3, 2012 at 10:30 AM · Report this
MacCrocodile 19
@18 - The best kind.
Posted by MacCrocodile on December 3, 2012 at 10:38 AM · Report this
Fnarf 20
@18, Indian restaurants with a lot of Goan-inspired dishes. Shanik (like Vij's) is also not traditional Indian but modern, original, non-traditional dishes. Don't get hung up on bogus "authenticity", just eat the amazing food.
Posted by Fnarf on December 3, 2012 at 10:38 AM · Report this
keshmeshi 21

Incorporate Flash? Don't you mean entirely made up of Flash?
Posted by keshmeshi on December 3, 2012 at 11:07 AM · Report this
snacktruck 22
stoked. it will be insane to get in there (albeit i am leaving to go there after i write this!) but well worth it. vij's never disappointed me in the many years of going there!! fnarf nailed it, hopefully this will be a red flag for the other indian places in our fair city to up their game and stop the ghee drenched vegetables and overcooked meats. ok, i will be right back. hungry.
Posted by snacktruck on December 3, 2012 at 12:04 PM · Report this
biffp 23
@22, let us know if they are open for lunch. I emailed to check. I don't have a phone number, and it's a walk from Stewart.
Posted by biffp on December 3, 2012 at 12:58 PM · Report this
Max Solomon 24
And BLAM I reserved the private dining room!
Posted by Max Solomon on December 3, 2012 at 1:09 PM · Report this
biffp 25
@24, ftw, living large in Seattle.
Posted by biffp on December 3, 2012 at 1:46 PM · Report this
Cornichon 26
Alas, according to, the opening has been delayed.…
Posted by Cornichon on December 3, 2012 at 2:38 PM · Report this
@18, a hindu-run restaurant won't serve beef. A muslim run Indian restaurant won't serve Pork. However, like most of the Vancouver Indian community, Vij is Punjabi - both pork and beef are fine.
Posted by diane b on December 3, 2012 at 3:19 PM · Report this
biffp 28
Wednesday opening. In other Eater news, Gordon Ramsay is shooting Restaurant Disasters at Yanni's in Phinney, and loved Walrus & Carpenter on Saturday tweeting it was great fun with a waitstaff that is a credit to the industry - true and very nice.

Posted by biffp on December 3, 2012 at 5:32 PM · Report this
bruce e 29
Went to Shanik last Friday for the 'soft' opening--just walked by, actually--and the food was the best we've had in, well, a long damn time. Great mix of subtle flavors that linger just long enough until the next bit.
Posted by bruce e on December 3, 2012 at 9:31 PM · Report this
Mr. Vij has also opened up a street food truck here in Vancouver - maybe he'll do the same in Seattle? I haven't tried the truck yet but if it's more along the lines of Rangoli (Vij's cheaper sister restaurant) it will be more affordable.
Posted by teamcanada'sforgottenpassword on December 4, 2012 at 8:04 AM · Report this
julie russell 31
Time for the Let's Eat Song: Yum Yum Papadum. Yum Yum Papadum. Repeat until husband submits and starts the car
Posted by julie russell http:// on December 4, 2012 at 8:45 AM · Report this
@12, Vij's sister restaurant, Rangoli, is way more affordable--simpler food by a bit, but still amazing. And Vij's is absolutely worth every cent. I saw an interview with Meera that said they'd be offering free snacks in the bar like they do with Vij's. I'd still prefer a reservation system, but at least the delicious tidbits keep total crankiness from setting in.
Posted by alight on December 4, 2012 at 9:37 AM · Report this
Posted by two shoes on December 4, 2012 at 9:41 AM · Report this
Wandergeist 34
I was at the soft opening last week -- my buddy and I were the first to arrive and so got treated to a bit of an informal personal tour by Meera. They were still sorting out a lot of last minute details -- apparently they had spent the last 24+ hours making nothing but Samosas, as the flour they were getting locally behaved a little differently from the stuff they sourced in Vancouver, so they had to experiment to get exactly what she wanted: a shell with the perfect texture that doesn't get your fingers greasy, so you can eat it one-handed while walking down the street texting with your other hand (her words). As that shows, she's a got a good sense of the neighborhood (which is particularly important for the lunch and to-go business) but obviously wants to be a destination (arguably THE destination Indian restaurant in Seattle, at least until some others step up). And yes, there will be a free snack in the bar when you're waiting on a table.

She described this as her "third daughter" in the family after Vij and Rangooli, and emphasized she wants it to have a menu that is distinct enough from the other two places that you'd still want to visit them when you're up there (she said fully 10% of their customers in Vancouver were from the Puget Sound area). Some of the menu favorites -- she mentioned the lamb popsicles specifically -- would carry over, but she wants this place to be distinct from the others.

She's also really passionate about local and sustainable sourcing, and cited that as one of the hurdles when I asked about seafood on the menu.

And then we had some food. It was all vegetarian, as they weren't cooking any meat dishes at the time, and they didn't have plates yet so we ate out of the to-go boxes with plastic cups of water. But the samosas were just about up to her high standards (they certainly exceeded mine) and one mushroom dish was a real standout (and I say that as someone who isn't particularly fond of mushrooms).

I've eaten at Vij's several times, and once at Rangooli, and this looks like it will be just as good in its own way (especially in a few weeks after they have all the kinks worked out) and worth seeking out as often as your budget allows.
Posted by Wandergeist on December 4, 2012 at 10:37 AM · Report this
CC-Rob 35
Attn: Indian Food Providers: You want to have a successful restaurant? Open up in Columbia City - There are no Indian Restaurants there.(No Competition!) The neighborhood is growing (New apartments, Condos and such) and waiting for you.
Posted by CC-Rob on December 4, 2012 at 10:46 AM · Report this
biffp 36
@34, very nice insight. I'm there on Friday before the Tragically Hip at Showbox. Maybe hit the Angry Beaver for a nightcap. It's a Canadian Friday night in Seattle.
Posted by biffp on December 4, 2012 at 11:41 AM · Report this
biffp 37
There's going to be a lunchtime takeout area called Tiffin.
Posted by biffp on December 4, 2012 at 5:28 PM · Report this
OirishOiyesAreSmilin 38
@18, a hindu-run restaurant won't serve beef. A muslim run Indian restaurant won't serve Pork. However, like most of the Vancouver Indian community, Vij is Punjabi - both pork and beef are fine.

Punjabi isn't a religious affiliation, it just means you're from the Punjab, a province of India. You could be Punjabi and Muslim, Hindu, Christian or whatever. Punjab does happen to be a Sikh majority state, and I think Vij comes from a Sikh family.
As far as what meat a restaurant serves, a proprietor's religion doesn't always trump commerce. Just because one doesn't eat, doesn't mean one cannot sell and serve to paying customers. Then there's always folks that are lapsed. They eat, drink and smoke whatever the fuck they want...
Posted by OirishOiyesAreSmilin on December 4, 2012 at 9:47 PM · Report this

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