Bollywood, meet biryani. That’s the vision of Nirman Shah, the chef behind Nirmanz Food Boutique, which opened in 2017 at 16338 Kensington Drive Ste. #160 in Sugar Land.
Shah, a native of Maharashtra, India, was trained in the Rambagh Palace of Jaipur, India. When he came to Sugar Land, he brought his love of Bollywood cinema and culture with him.
The walls of Nirmanz are lined with movie posters and the ceilings are dotted with ornate, colorful lamps.
The front frames and grills of antique cars and a rickshaw greet visitors at the counter.
Some drinks at Nirmanz are even served in mini rickshaw carts, like those popular people-movers used in India’s urban centers.
I chose two things from the rather extensive menu: Goat Kadai ($16) and rosemary naan ($3).
A kadai is essentially an Indian wok, and it is commonly used in the preparation of Mughlai cuisine, which was influenced by Central Asian and Islamic cuisine dating back to the 15th century.
Tender pieces of goat, bell pepper and onion are tossed with fresh herbs and spices in a sauce that makes your tongue tingle with flavor. Rice is served on the side, and naan is useful as a palate cleanser and to soak up the excess sauce.
Quench your thirst with a Masala Tea ($2), a milk-based black tea infused with cardamom, ginger, cinnamon and cloves, the popular Mango Lassi ($4) or a Sitafal Shake ($5), a thick milkshake made with custard and apples.
For dessert, your options are the Gulab Jamun (fried dough), Ras Malai (sweet cottage cheese or paneer cheese), Moong Dal (sweet lentils), halwa (a semolina-flour based pastry), and Gajar Halwa (a carrot-based halwa), all $6 each.
Nirmanz Food Boutique
Address: 16338 Kensington Drive. Ste. #160, Sugar Land
Dining Options: Dine-in, curbside pickup, delivery via UberEats, Grubhub or Postmates
Hours: 11 a.m.-3 p.m. (lunch) and 5:30-9:30 p.m. (dinner) Monday, Wednesday and Thursday; 11 a.m.-3 p.m. (lunch) and 5:30-10 p.m. (dinner) Friday; 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Saturday; 11 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Sunday
Entrée prices: $11-$16
Senior discount: No
Healthy options: Saag Paneer ($13)
Star of the show: Goat Kadai
Rating: 3 out of 5 stars