We have restaurateur Ashok Bajaj to thank for bringing the cuisine of his hometown, Mumbai, to the D.C. dining scene. Both Rasika and now sister restaurant Rasika West End have received rave reviews from both food reviewers and diners. You can often find me lunching at Rasika West End.
To start with, I love walking into the bright, airy, modern dining space that feels very inviting. There are three separate dining areas including one that looks like a library. The only thing giving Rasika away as an Indian restaurant is the large silver hand mudra and the distinctive canopied booths, which are designed to mimic traditional Hindu wedding carriages.
On the other hand, the food is Indian through and through, and it’s excellent. The menu offers modern takes on farmana (nosh), sigri (griddle), tawa (barbecue), chaat (snack), entrée, and vegetarian selections. Although Mumbai influences much of the menu, there are also dishes inspired by other regions in India. On a recent visit, I feasted on a Keralan-style fish curry—utterly delicious. Be sure to order the naan. It’s made to order so it comes to the table piping hot, with a very thin outer crust with charred bits from the tandoor oven and an airy, slightly chewy interior. Give me the naan and a bowl of curry or dal, and I’m in heaven.
Rasika's menu changes frequently, which brings loyal diners like me back repeatedly!