Mixed Experience at Sher-e-Punjab

October 1, 2005 at 2:41am By: Mr. T Posted in Mr. T's Den

I had the pleasure to lunch at Sher-e-Punjab today, located in the mini-strip mall at 17th and Q. I have been there previously and always been impressed. If you have not been there, and you are an Indian food fan in Lincoln, run…do not walk, to Sher-e-Punjab. Let me note that, having lived in Southeast Asia for close to 5 years and traveled to Malaysia over 20 times, I know my Indian curries. Outside of Birmingham, England and the subcontinent itself, Malaysia is regarded as the best place in the world to get north and south Indian cuisine, as well as its regional variations. So don’t argue with me about curries. Sher-e-Punjab offers a menu clearly from the Moghul inspired strain, with a fair selection of meat-based curries and variety of breads.

Unfortunately, this is still the USA, and in the USA Indian food is served “entrée” style for lunch at Sher-e-Punjab rather then the way it should be: with a collection of 3-5 sweet, spicy and creamy curries, black and yellow dhal, as well as yogurt and a variety of chutneys to be shared amongst the group with a pile of naan, rotis or rice. Nonetheless, I ordered the Chicken Tikka Naan while my companions ordered Chicken Vindaloo and Gosht Korma.

The problem was, my Chicken Tikka Naan didn’t really make sense because the Chicken – which I though would be a curry – was what appeared to me to be just hunks of dry Chicken Tandoori. Not that I don’t like Chicken Tandoori, but if you get some naan with the meal, you need some curry sauce to dip it with. When I first saw my plate, it was one of those WTF moments. Although I was a bit miffed, I didn’t mention it to my dining companions. I just ended up asking one companion to pour some of her Chicken Vindaloo curry on my plate and also stole a dip from Mr. Wilson’s Gosht Korma. Both tasted excellent to me.

Hmmmm. Well, definitely consider

this post a recommendation of Sher-e-Punjab, but also a warning: if you are going to order the Chicken Tikka Naan (listed at the top of its entrée menu), also be prepared to order a side dish of dhal or curry sauce for your naan. Otherwise, it may be better to just go with a vindaloo or korma entree plate. Sheeesh!

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Mr. Wilson October 1, 2005 at 3:00am

My gosht korma was pretty decent, as Mr. T has already said. But it fell just a little short of a similar dish I’ve had (and loved!) at The Oven. I think the one at The Oven was chicken tikka korma, but I could be mistaken.

Still, Sher-e-Punjab is a nice little restaurant. The location is unfortunate—it’s hard to have a good fine-dining atmosphere when you’re located between a budget barber and a donut shop—but they do a good job with the space they have.

I’m not going to ditch The Oven as my favorite Indian restaurant in Lincoln, but Sher-e-Punjab makes for a nice alternative.

Steve October 4, 2005 at 4:55am

Thing is, Lincolnites are very lucky to have four Indian restaurants of decent to high quality.  No wonder Taste of India shut down back in ‘95.  It couldn’t hold a candle to The Oven.  Thankfully the Oven’s chefs tend to be independent minde and eventually open their own places. In many cities bigger than Lincoln, decent Indian food is hard to find.  In Chicago you have to go up to the north side to get any.  Of course that’s in the Indian neighborhood so it’s to be expected.  Anywhere else in the city, though, good luck. 

You can order a thali off the dinner menu at all four places but there’s no way they’re going to make that a lunch option.

I’ve had that Chicken Tikka Nan experience before at The Oven.  I expect Chicken Tikka to have a red sauce but somehow that isn’t the case when it’s served on bread.

Um December 17, 2005 at 3:06pm

Please don’t pretend you know anything about Indian/Punjabi cuisine. Five years of tourism does not make you an expert, as evidenced by this article.

Julia September 22, 2006 at 5:50am

When you ordered the Tikka Naan, I think you were thinking of Chicken Tikka Massala, which is Tandori style chicken in a rich creamy curry sauce.  The Chicken Tikka Naan you were served sounds about right to me.  I’m not an expert of Indian cuisine, just an ardent fan. I’m from England where Indian curry is a national dish and I’ve also lived in the Middle East and India.  I now live on Oahu, Hawaii where you can’t get a decent curry for anything.

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