Four tandoors — squat open-topped ovens — sit inside the glassed-in kitchen at the new Choolaah, an energetic fast-casual Indian BYOB that opens its first Philly-area location Friday, Sept. 15, at King of Prussia Town Center.
At 600 degrees, two of the tandoors sear the skewered chicken, salmon, and lamb meatballs, while the two others turn out the bread (white and wheat naan).
This is the real daal, folks.
Order at the counter, where pictures and chaat-y staff make it easy to navigate the menus.
With sauces and sides, meals are served on platters, in bowls, on salads, or in sandwiches for about $11 a head. There also are a la carte dishes such as samosa, samosa chaat, and pav bhaji.
Food sourcing is impeccable.
(Unhappy with the paneer they found in the Midwest during development, founders Randhir Sethi and Raji Sankar — two Indian tech investors who got their first taste with food by owning Five Guys franchises — contracted with Amish farmers to do the cheese right.)
Choolaah also appeals to the germophobes among us.
There's a slick hand-washing station set up right in the dining room; plunge your hands into the twin buckets, wait 15 seconds while fresh water scrubs up, grab a handy paper towel to dry off, and dine happy.
And speaking of happy: Do not skip dessert, whether it's a packaged cup of mango or malai kulfi ice cream (whose spoons are tucked cleverly under the lids) or the rich chocolate truffles.
Hours are 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday to Thursday, till 10 p.m. Friday and Sunday.