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Persis Indian Grill Dishes Authentic Indian Cuisine in Exton

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Photos by Ed Williams

A national franchise that deserves local love, Persis Indian Grill brings authentic Indian flavors and dishes to Exton.

With decent Indian cuisine becoming so common in our area, it’s always nice to find a place that truly stands out. That’s definitely the case with Persis Indian Grill, which has taken over the former Nudy’s Cafe location in the Eagleview Town Center north of Exton. It’s worth noting that Persis is a national franchise, with 20 other restaurants bringing authentic Indian cuisine to such far-flung locales at O’Fallon, Missouri, Okemos, Michigan, and Fort Mill, South Carolina.

Persis Indian Grill

The dining area

At Persis’ sole Pennsylvania location, a colorful mural of an Indian skyline, turquoise accents and a wall of warm-toned woven wood make for a soothing vibe. Curry-laden air preps the palate for an extensive but manageable menu punctuated by a signature dum biryani, made with basmati rice, spices and meat or veggies. All food is prepared from scratch with fresh ingredients, and the staff is more than willing to guide you through the more adventurous selections.

chicken dum biryani

Chicken dum biryani

My experience afforded a magnificent mélange of flavors and aromas. The visually stunning presentations began with an Indian street snack called aloo tikki chaat—a boiled potato pan-fried and served on a bed of vegetables and rice, then drizzled with yogurt sauce. The chili chicken appetizer offered bite-sized chunks of stir-fried thighs mixed with bell peppers, chilis, onion, garlic, and a signature sauce with hints of ginger. The tangdi kabab’s marinated chicken legs are slow-cooked in a tandoor oven and served sizzling (don’t touch the hot platter) on a bed of onions and peppers mixed with basmati rice.

Aloo tikki chaat

Aloo tikki chaat

If you want a tamer spin on your Indian adventure, I suggest the butter chicken, stewed in rich tomato sauce with herbs and spices and a touch of butter. The cream-based sauce is flavorful without too much spice. Layered, soft and fresh out of the oven, the naan comes in a number of varieties, including rosemary and garlic and one stuffed with nuts.

Butter chicken

Butter chicken

The Exton location prides itself on its dessert specials. To that end, the Persian rose milk cake is highly recommended. It’s similar to a tres leches, though with a distinctive pink shade from the rose milk. Admittedly, I did find the gajar ka halwa, a Punjabi carrot-based dessert pudding, to be a tad too sweet.

Overall, the Persis flavor profile is savory with a middle-of-the-road kick, though adventurous diners can order anything spicier. As you might expect, takeout and delivery are doing gangbusters. Be sure to try a to-go lunch box if you work in the area.

diwani handi

Diwani handi

There’s no corkage fee at Persis. I recommend a pinot gris, a gewürztraminer or a light riesling. Beer drinkers should go with anything that’s not a lager, and a crisp cider also works. The authentic yogurt-based lassi beverages are a refreshing option for designated drivers.

PERSIS INDIAN GRILL
541 Wellington Square, Exton, (484) 341-8445

COST: $3.99-$23.99.
ATMOSPHERE: Relaxed and aromatic.
HOURS: 11:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.–9:30 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, 11:30 a.m.–2:30 p.m. and 5:00 p.m.–9:00 p.m. Sunday.
ATTIRE: Casual.
EXTRAS: BYOB; no corkage fee.

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