Goan Out to Dinner? Malai Marke Is Now Open on Curry Row

Daniel Maurer

Malai Marke, the Indian restaurant that promised to bring “the ultimate dollop of ethereal joy” to Curry Row, is now open for lunch and dinner.

As mentioned last month, the restaurant comes from the owner of Curry Hill spots Singapura, Chote Nawab, and Dhaba, and it has an interesting connection to its neighbor, Brick Lane Curry House, as well. Roshan Balan, the general manager at Malai Marke, went to school in India with Brick Lane’s owner; they emigrated to the United States around the same time in the early 2000s, and briefly worked at Carnival Cruises together, said Mr. Balan.

Brick Lane’s success didn’t dissuade owner Shiva Natarajan from setting up shop on the same block, in the former Taj Mahal space. “We’ve been targeting this spot since 2008,” Mr. Balan said. “We thought we’d bring in real, authentic Indian cuisine.”

Sure, you can get a chicken tikka masala for cheaper at other joints on the block, but Mr. Balan believes there’s a difference: “It’s the quality.” Which comes from chef Karti Pant, previously at Michelin-starred Junoon. The menu he’s now serving from the open kitchen is below, complete with a selection of Goan specialties and shout-outs to spiritual guru Swami Sivananda Saraswait.

Malai Marke, 318 East Sixth Street (between First and Second Avenues), (212) 777-7729