It was lunchtime when a friend and I stopped into the spacious new Delhi 6 Indian Frontier Cuisine in Hicksville.
Everyone in the main dining room, it seemed, was partaking of the restaurant’s large and varied lunch buffet. “What kind of bread would you like; naan, garlic naan or puri?” the waiter asked, assuming we’d be hopping on the buffet bandwagon. Bread, it seems, is gratis in the $9.95 price and is made to order.
It’s my custom to avoid buffets, but this one looked particularly intriguing. So, going against better judgment — and figuring we’d have ordered the same dishes off the menu anyway — I told him garlic naan.
The bread arrived a few minutes later, hot, flaky, and aromatic. Too bad the buffet items — all of which were hot, fresh, and regularly replenished — turned out to be mildly spiced, devoid of the nuance one craves in Indian food. Sweet corn soup was one-dimensional. Tandoori chicken was dry. And so on.
Irony is, I picked up an order of goat biryani to bring back to a friend at the office. And, wouldn’t you know, even after traveling from Hicksville to Melville, that dish had all the zing and complexity the buffet items were missing.
Advance New Year’s resolution: Avoid buffets and order off the menu.
Delhi 6 Indian Frontier Cuisine is at 46 W. Old Country Rd., Hicksville, 516-719-0770.
Above: Buffet table at Delhi 6 in Hicksville