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Superkhana International - Indian flavors - Logan Square

Superkhana International - Indian flavors - Logan Square
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  • Superkhana International - Indian flavors - Logan Square

    Post #1 - July 11th, 2019, 4:17 pm
    Post #1 - July 11th, 2019, 4:17 pm Post #1 - July 11th, 2019, 4:17 pm
    Superkhana International is the soon-to-open (today, maybe?) joint venture in Logan Square from Yoshi Yamada and Zeeshan Shah who had a run of successful pop-ups with Bombay Breakdown, and multiple James Beard-award finalist -- and Jean Banchet-Award winner -- chef Jason Hammel of Lula Cafe, Marisol, etc. I'd describe its focus as contemporary takes on well-known and iconic Indian dishes but in a lot of ways, the place defies any sort of succinct labeling.

    I was fortunate enough to be invited to one of their Friends & Family services earlier this week. In the interest of full disclosure, I didn't know -- until the bill was brought to our table at the end of the meal -- that our entire meal would be comped but it was. With that out of the way, here's what we ate . . .

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    Chana Chaat | chickpeas, tamarind, yogurt, sev, fresh herbs

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    Broccoli | coconut almond vinaigrette, curd chiles, sev

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    The Bombay Sandwich | cheese, amul, roasted veggies, etc.
    Described on the menu (shown below) as a 'mumbai psychedelic grilled cheese with...many, many things.

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    French Fry Manchurian | sesame, scallions & aioli

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    Chapli Kebab Salad | lamb & beef kebab, asian greens, yogurt dressing

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    Vindaloo | pork belly, guajillo chiles, champagne vinegar

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    Butter Chicken Supreme | served in a calzone
    We wanted to try the naan because they are being baked to order a la Shaya and Galit. So, at the end of our meal, we ordered one to help us mop up our plates. However, we ended up with this gigantic calzone instead. It looked too big to be a naan but in this newfangled configuration, we weren't entirely sure it wasn't a naan until we tore into it . . . . and butter chicken started pouring out of it. On the one hand, I was glad because we really wanted to try it. On the other hand, we were pretty darned full, so it was only a couple of bites each before we had it wrapped up.

    We each had a cocktail, too. I had a refreshing, food-friendly spritzer of Cappelletti, soda and sparkling. My son had the Old Fashioned, which featured some ghee-infused bourbon that he enjoyed but that I did not care for.

    I'm presume these menus are posted somewhere online but because there's no website yet, I thought I'd post them here . . .

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    Food Menu

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    Drink Menu

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    Drink Menu (continued)

    It's F&F and experience tells me that in a few weeks (or maybe even sooner), at least some of this is likely to have changed. That's the reason I didn't spend any time above describing the details about the individual dishes. That said, we really enjoyed the meal. My two favorites were The Bombay Sandwich and the French Fry Manchurian. And, for those who are curious, had we not been comped, our bill would have come in at $114 with tax. But comp aside, I'm excited that Superkhana International is just blocks from home and I foresee eating there on a regular basis.

    =R=

    3059 W Diversey Ave
    Chicago, IL 60647
    (773) 661-9028
    (no website yet)
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #2 - July 11th, 2019, 4:28 pm
    Post #2 - July 11th, 2019, 4:28 pm Post #2 - July 11th, 2019, 4:28 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:Superkhana International is the soon-to-open (today, maybe?)
    Per Eater, they "officially" open on Tuesday. Whether that means a grand opening and they're actually in a soft open this weekend is not articulated.
    https://chicago.eater.com/platform/amp/2019/7/11/20690642/superkhana-international-reservations-butter-chicken-calzone-indian-logan-square
  • Post #3 - July 29th, 2019, 3:02 pm
    Post #3 - July 29th, 2019, 3:02 pm Post #3 - July 29th, 2019, 3:02 pm
    Went on Saturday and absolutely loved it. The point of view (American-raised kid riffing on the food of their cultural background) is right up my alley and every single dish delivered.

    We had the chana chaat, french fry manchurian, chapli kebab salad, and the butter chicken supreme. The chaat was refreshing and a great textural mix, though probably the most straight-forward rendition of any dish in our meal. French fry manchurian will easily make my list of top 5 dishes of the year. It was everything I'd hoped for—crispy fries (that would be delicious in their own right) topped with a flavorful sauce that I could eat for days. This is a must-order dish.

    The kebab was two heavily-spiced patties with a nice herb salad on top. The meat was just on the edge of being too salty but the flavors of everythign were so intense that the salt didn't distract. The butter chicken supreme made me laugh with delight as it came out. It really is a calzone made of naan and filled with cheese and butter chicken. There is a reason it gets a special section of the menu; it is a perfect encapsulation of what Superkhana is doing.

    The ice cream sandwich on the dessert menu is a must-order as well. The housemade frozen custard has the flavor profile that I love in Indian desserts (cardamom, rose, saffron) and it's also pretty damn cute.

    So yeah, get there ASAP because this is the most exciting opening in a minute.
  • Post #4 - July 30th, 2019, 8:59 am
    Post #4 - July 30th, 2019, 8:59 am Post #4 - July 30th, 2019, 8:59 am
    nice review
  • Post #5 - August 2nd, 2019, 11:22 am
    Post #5 - August 2nd, 2019, 11:22 am Post #5 - August 2nd, 2019, 11:22 am
    We quite enjoyed this meal. In many ways the place is casual - smallish menu, carb heavy, bright colors. There is a beautiful patio aside from two largish dining rooms. The butter chicken calzone is a genius and excellent. Wonderfully, the beverage program involves many more spritzes and high balls than precious cocktails (of which there are still 3-4, don't worry) and we found those refreshing and thirst quenching with the big flavors. In addition to the calzone we did the crunchy fun kachumber salad (puffed rice, cukes, tomato), some kind of indian version of elotes with farmers market corn that was great, a nice chicken thigh with cabbage, and very special coconut green beans w candied nuts, plus the cardamom ice cream sandwiches. As a bonus, because we were there on aTues when Lula is closed, lots of Lula staffers were visiting, and that (along with all their long time serving) speaks highly of the leadership. Servers were friendly, highly knowledgeable, and accommodating. The crowd was young, and the pizza vibe was real.
  • Post #6 - August 5th, 2019, 8:13 am
    Post #6 - August 5th, 2019, 8:13 am Post #6 - August 5th, 2019, 8:13 am
    Had a late and therefore abbreviated meal here over the weekend and can fourth the above comments: this place is very promising. Skip the Bombay sandwich--it's just a grilled cheese sandwich with a lot of melty-but-bland amuul cheese and some pickled veggies--but don't sleep on the other veggie dishes: the chaat and corn/dokhla dishes mentioned above have a great balance of heat and acidity; the cucumber salad is refreshing and would make a good add-on to accompany a meat dish (which we didn't order). And I'm fascinated by the naan: it's sort of like a cross between fugasse and Pizza Hut's pan pizza crust--that is not in any way a critique. Will be back soon to see how that bread works as a pizza.
  • Post #7 - August 5th, 2019, 10:46 am
    Post #7 - August 5th, 2019, 10:46 am Post #7 - August 5th, 2019, 10:46 am
    I enjoyed The Bombay Sandwich and was impressed by its conception, construction and richness. The combination of cheeses, including delectable amul, were well-chosen. Veggies were not only flavorful but were also perfectly cooked and provided a very satisfying textural dimension. Bread was buttery and grilled to crispy perfection. The sandwich was a gooey delight, easily greater than the sum of its parts and one of the more enjoyable dishes we had at our meal. But again, our experience was during F&F, so the sandwich may have changed since we had it.

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #8 - August 5th, 2019, 11:56 am
    Post #8 - August 5th, 2019, 11:56 am Post #8 - August 5th, 2019, 11:56 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote: But again, our experience was during F&F, so the sandwich may have changed since we had it.=R=


    Doubt it. I don't think the sandwich is qualitatively different than the rote veggies-with-some-cheese-on-bread item every sandwich shop has for vegetarians; I didn't find it substantively better, either.
  • Post #9 - August 5th, 2019, 12:37 pm
    Post #9 - August 5th, 2019, 12:37 pm Post #9 - August 5th, 2019, 12:37 pm
    chezbrad wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote: But again, our experience was during F&F, so the sandwich may have changed since we had it.=R=


    Doubt it. I don't think the sandwich is qualitatively different than the rote veggies-with-some-cheese-on-bread item every sandwich shop has for vegetarians; I didn't find it substantively better, either.

    I love the distinctive richness of the amul and haven't encountered it served on a sandwich like this anywhere else in town.

    =R=
    Gardening is a bloodsport --Meghan Kleeman

    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #10 - August 11th, 2019, 7:52 pm
    Post #10 - August 11th, 2019, 7:52 pm Post #10 - August 11th, 2019, 7:52 pm
    gnarchief wrote:The butter chicken supreme made me laugh with delight as it came out. It really is a calzone made of naan and filled with cheese and butter chicken.


    Contrarian take: that's really all it is. As in, it just tastes like any ol' calzone: the whole thing blurs into a chewy and creamy pile, with no Indian(-esque) flavors coming through. No spice whatsoever. The sauce gets pasty quick. Just not a good dish.
  • Post #11 - August 22nd, 2019, 9:33 pm
    Post #11 - August 22nd, 2019, 9:33 pm Post #11 - August 22nd, 2019, 9:33 pm
    Walk don't run to Superkhana. There were a couple hits, but my overall takeaway is that rather providing the mind-bending fusion I was hoping for, I got watered down Indian flavors.

    Let's focus on the hits. Our group of 10 put a nice dent in the menu and the overwhelming favorite was the Bombay Sandwich, a magnificent buttery and cheesy concoction made all the better by adding some of the Indian ketchup (think American ketchup on umami steroids). I'm genuinely baffled by chezbrad's strongly anti-Bombay Sandwich position above. Different strokes for different folks, I suppose. But if my trip to Superkhana consisted of nothing more than a grilled cheese, a cocktail and perhaps an ice cream sandwich for dessert, this would be an over-the-top effusive post.

    Superkhana pizza 4.jpg

    I also enjoyed the naan pizza. We got the Palak Pizza (pictured, with charred spinach, chile oil and more) and the lamb and beef meatball pizza. Both were really good. The naan here is great bread and great bread + great toppings is a good combination. Would it scratch the itch if I was craving pizza? Probably not but I'm very much a tomato sauce guy. Might do the trick for others. That said, would happily eat this stuff again if I go back and don't fill up on grilled cheese.

    Superkhana fries 4.jpg

    I also was a fan of the French Fry Manchurian. Would split these with someone else should I go back since these are all kinds of filling. Picture included because the construction looks a bit better than in Ronnie's pic above. We had fun playing jenga while eating these.

    Other items I sampled were the butter chicken, the kachumber salad, the chana chaat, the little gem salad, the chile cheese naan, and the vindaloo. None of it was bad, it just wasn't as good as a whole bunch of other Indian restaurants and wasn't creative enough with non-Indian flavors to really stand out as special.

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