>> Al-Watan Halal Tandoori Restaurant | Eat the World Los Angeles

Friday 23 July 2021

Al-Watan Halal Tandoori Restaurant


COVID-19 UPDATE: The dining room is open.

For the past 16 months when takeout was the primary (and safest) option, South Asian foods featured heavily in the eating rotations, with dishes that naturally lend themselves well for eating a bit later in the day or being heated back up the next. Dishes of tandoori baked and grilled meats with rice, curries, and slow-cooked stews might even taste better when left in the fridge overnight.

Places like Al-Watan have been perfecting takeout for decades, but you can sit down for lunch and dinner again if desired. Unlike some of the other Pakistani places nearby, this is not a restaurant attached to a grocery store and does do formal (read: casual) dining.

If you are dining in, there may be no better time to order the sizzling plate of mix tandoori ($17, above). Named for the clay oven it is cooked in, this plate is a mix of chicken and beef, which comes in different cuts and might have a seekh kabob thrown in for good measure.

The tandoori chicken is a star here, juicy and perfectly marinated. And while little cups of the spicy cilantro-laced yogurt sauce will definitely come packed with to go orders, when you sit down it comes in a big ketchup squeeze bottle and feels unlimited. It is delicious, and improves anything it touches.

Those to-go orders seem to be full of lunch and dinner specials that the restaurant has been providing for many years. The dinner special ($12, above center, comes with naan) has a seekh kabob and drumstick of tandoori chicken over rice and adds both a lamb and chicken korma, lentils, and yogurt sauce. There is no part of this plate that is weak.

A recent takeout order also included their spicy haleem ($10, above, lower right), a balanced stew of shredded beef, barley, and lentils that might be the best in Los Angeles, and chicken tikka masala ($12, above, bottom center), which has a smokiness to it and reads much different than the sweet slop that is usually pedaled. It proves the dish has an important history despite being fusion born in London.

๐Ÿ“ 13619 S. Inglewood Avenue, Hawthorne, South Bay


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