The newly opened American Tandoor in the Tysons Corner Center offers an eclectic menu highlighting both India’s culinary heritage and flavor but is also melded with American influence delivering unique flavor combinations. Restaurateur Karan Singh, is a native of both the USA and Northern India where he developed a passion and understanding of both cultures and their unique, abundant flavors. With the American Tandoor, Singh has successfully done what he set out to do. Hopefully with American Tandoor, locals who haven’t been willing to give Indian cuisine a try, will find their menu more approachable.
The impressive menu features breads, Chaat, salads, vegetables, sandwiches, and signature, Indo-Chinese and Tandoor style dishes, all developed with 16 unique spice blends that are toasted and ground in-house. Chef de Cuisine, Satinder Vij at the helm, comes straight from India but with Singh’s oversight, many of American Tandoor’s dishes reflect the integration of both Indian and American influences.
You will see the melding in a variety of dishes, such as a samosa, filled with sweet potatoes and marshmallows, crispy calamari but served with yogurt sauce, instead of marinara or Saag paneer with a hint of Jack cheese and short rib with jiggery and garlic. And breakfast dishes such as buttermilk-and-chocolate waffles with tandoor bacon– all showcase the American influence on Indian flavors. Even the traditional Naan was lighter, more airy, and was served with butter, which Americans are more accustomed to eating with bread. A nice twist, is their delicious Indian spiced butters, including tikka, warm spice, ginger sesame, and tangy mango. They are a little bit spicy, but if you love your food with some kick, you will love these alternatives to just plain butter.
Even the signature dishes have a unique twist, such as the pork vindaloo comes with creamy cardamom grits! But proceed with caution! The dishes are spicy! The shrimp and grits, aren’t what your grandmother made! American Tandoor has a creative menu by using some less common Indian flavors – mustard, tamarind, and even beef and pork on the menu (rarely seen due the religious implication).
The salads such as the Chaat Salad with lotus root, tomato, cucumber, romaine, Asian pear, mint and basil topped with candied cashews are approachable and can easily be a meal with the addition of a protein. The Chaat was a delicious and very refreshing. For an additional few dollars, diners can add Tandoor chicken, fried chicken, shrimp, salmon, or steak to their greens.
The interior is gorgeous – vibrant and colorful with pillars adorned with eclectic art. The restaurant and bar is large with 4,000 square feet which seats approximately 136 guests, and includes an open kitchen with large Tandoor ovens being front and center. The restaurant offers a contemporary atmosphere featuring elements of classic Indian style flecked with modern accents and bold colors such as saffron and teal.
Indian-inspired drinks feature a Bloody Mary with Indian chili-infused vodka and a spiced tomato blend. The mocktails, are refreshing and help tame the spice, such as the Pomegranate cooler. On the cocktail menu, try the Maharaja punch with cardamom infused gin, the Masala Sour with fig-infused bourbon and garam masala syrup. The infusions are all made in-house, and are very creative. Plus, they serve Old Monk rum, which is what all young adults in India grow up with. The wine and beer list is also pretty good – so you will be drinking well, whatever the choice of drink.
American Tandoor is delicious and the service is spectacular with very knowledgeable servers. It’s well-worth the visit. Check out the album of photos on the VivaTysons Magazine facebook page.
Lunch and dinner will be offered, Monday through Friday starting at 11:30 a.m. with brunch on the weekends running from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
7943B Tysons Corner Center