Mango Grove: Taste India Without Getting Eaten by a Tiger

Mangos

Long live the king: Mangoes for sale at a market in Chennai, Tamil Nadu in India, where the prized produce is lauded as the King of Fruits. (Sistak via Flickr)

Haha. My good friends know I’m kinda weird and have all types of diverse interests, and most of them know few things make me perk up like a big cat. And out of all of them, tigers are my favorite.

I bring this up because I enjoy making tangential connections on the blog, even if it makes me seem corny or even gauche in that I think I’m being clever, but all I’m really pointing out is that I’m too obvious for my own good; that’s why you always see me throw in bands, actors – nearly any reference that crosses the synaptic gap when writing.

Yeah, I can be a little much even for me at times.

OK, but what does that have to do with Columbia’s Mango Grove?

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Well, many people also know the tiger is the national animal of India, but far fewer are probably aware that a bunch of them live in the Sundarbans, the largest single block of tidal halophytic mangrove forest in the world, shared by India and Bangladesh. So I immediately thought the nice Indians who own and run Mango Grove were making a funny, akin to the proprietors of the area’s Wok and Roll restaurants.


View Larger Map Mango Grove
8865 Stanford Blvd.
Columbia, Md. 21045

Then I looked it up and saw that India is kinda enthralled with the mango, so they almost certainly named the restaurant after the fruit. How pedestrian. Just when I thought the world had some funny Indians to deal with.

Well, the truth is, I don’t know exactly what these people were thinking in naming their establishment, but having just eaten there, they can name it Tiger on Mars and people will still come to sample the food. It’s very good. Here’s their philosophy.

I went with a couple of friends, Paul and Karolina, and we all ordered something different and shared with each other, well, one of us ordered a gluten-free, sheet-like thing that had stuff in it called a cheelay dosai, which wasn’t real conducive to sharing, though she tried, bless her heart.

I had lamb vindaloo (I looked for chicken vindaloo but sadly, they were bereft), and it was very good and spicy, like Mexican hot-sauce spicy. I also had some delectable bread, both garlic and plain. Paul had vegetable korma, and it was also good. When we put the entrees on our brown rice, guess what? It was good. What a surprise!

A Taj Mahal (the big 650 ml) and Heineken rounded out a great meal for me. Karolina had a type of tea with cardamom. Paul, who gives a rat’s behind what he had to drink.

Picky eaters, those with food allergies or vegetarians (and for select dishes, vegans), this place is for you, as they’ll try to accommodate your wishes (as best they can. Of course, some items may not be alchemized to your specifications).

Here, have a look at their menu.

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Open every day, they offer a lunch buffet for $11.95 during the week and $12.95 during weekends (check the site for hours of operation in toto).

If you live in the area, they’ll even deliver the food to your door (I’ve experienced this too; one of the owners actually delivered to us one time quite late as a matter of fact).

Karolina said something to the effect that you can always tell if an ethnic restaurant is any good, because if it is, people from that country will be eating there. And I called her a vicious liar …  OK, I agreed. And we saw at least two Indian families there, probably more. If they like it, it must be authentic.

Come out and decide for yourself.

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Scott D

Scott D

Scott is a local writer and has been with the Apartment Showcase blog since its inception in 2010.

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