루나아시아 (Luna Asia) is best value for money in terms of what W11,000 can buy you in Seoul for an Indian lunch. If you like Indian food for its spices, roti and a little bit of ambiance plus assuming you are around COEX area, you should stop by this place.

Get there before lunch time or allow for 20-25 minutes waiting time. This place gets really busy during lunch time. As you get a table, the restaurant layout – kitchen and serving platforms represent typical dhaba layout which are very common on national highways across India, this one is a little more cosmopolitan though.   (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dhaba).

For ~W11,000, you get –

  1. Healthy portion main course curry
  2. ‘I wish I had more’ portion of vegetable curry
  3. ‘Good enough to taste’ amount of corn soup
  4. ‘Glad I had greens & veggies’ amount of salad
  5. Korean rice – don’t expect Basmati or Sona Masoori to be included in W11,000 set meal.
  6. 2 Tandoori rotis

I would strongly recommend against ordering anything apart from the daily set menu or thali as they call it in India. Its just not worth the price. It’s a one size fits all type of restaurant: they use a common standard gravy for all curries, same is the case with Roti / Naan – they use the same dough! You order garlic naan and do not get freshly minced garlic on the naan. They run a mean and cost effective kitchen – when we asked the cook in kitchen about gravy in Hindi. His response ‘Itna busy time mei itna kafi hei’ or this is good enough for this busy time’. It’s a factory – churn out the thalis for all of the waiting customers. Forget about ordering anything off the regular menu because it will take time away from their factory production.

The tick to make the best value for your money is choosing the right set menu option – prefer Palak, dal based curry in vegetable option to avoid the ‘pre mixed’ curry base. Point to note, they provide very hearty portion of main course curry. Mutton / Lamb curry was spicy and was well cooked – not typical Indian curry, but it definitely tastes Indian.

By Contributing SFP Editor – Swaroop Gandikota. Edited by SFP.

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