I’ve always said I wasn’t a big fan of Indian food. In fact, for some reason I said I did not like it at all. You know those kids who have never truly tried a specific kind of food but just assume they don’t like it based on one single experience? So yeah… nice to meet you!
But everything changed when last Thursday I went with Amanda and Dominique to a super cool Indian restaurant in the East Village called Panna II, one of the 4 Indian restaurants located at the same spot!
The striking decor, with thousands of Christmas lights in different shapes and forms (they even have red hot chilly peppers lights hanging from the ceiling!) and flags from several countries won’t let you miss their location, believe me!
Next door, the Milon, follows the same format, and it’s hard to know which one to enter first! To make it even more difficult, there is the Royal Bangladesh restaurant downstairs, with a less chaotic environment (“chaotic” in a good way. I think haha) and a garden in the back! Usually Panna II and Milon are always busier, with people lining up, but the excitment for the ones who are going for the first time makes it worth the wait. Apparently even if you make reservations you might experience some wait, the place is pretty small. Ah! And you are welcome to bring your own drinks, alcohol is not sold there! The staff speaks english but don’t expect the best five stars service, everything there happens really fast but it’s part of the experience!
Prices were good, we ate very well and spent about $ 50 for the three of us. Ah! One thing you can do is celebrate your birthday or celebrate the burthday of someone sitting at the table next to you. The place becomes a real party for a few seconds and you and your guests will receive a small scoop of mango ice cream. I recommend you ordering one anyway, it’s delicious! We celebrated Amanda’s birthday and it was the highlight of our evening! Please note that I did not order anything spicy, I’m not a fan of spicy food, so I can’t tell you what to order but I took photos of everyhting we were loving and you can take it with you as a reference! I left Panna II very happy, almost rolling down the stairs and with a totally different opinion about Indian cuisine! I’m here counting down the seconds to come back !! Thank you girls for the invitation !!
The Panna II and all the others are located at the address 93 1st Avenue, New York, NY streets between 5th and 6th Streets in the East Village. The nearby subways stations are the 6 (Astor Place) or F (2nd Avenue) trains! Don’t forget to walk around the village after, you won’t regret! For more NYC tips follow me on Instagram: @marthasachser and @blognyandabout!