Restaurant Review: Chai Pani

chai_paniAddress: 406 W Ponce De Leon Ave, Decatur, GA 30030
Phone:(404) 378-4030
Saturday hours 11:30 am–3:00 pm, 5:30 pm–9:30 pm  -  See all
Transit: Ponce De Leon Ave@Fairview Ave


Chai Pani, a new City of Decatur hotspot known for its “Indian street food”, caught my eye as I was going to Farm Burger.  I was drawn to the line outside.  I knew that a trip to Chai Pani was in the near future.  Fast forward to today, the FUTURE is here.  I pulled into the parking lot.  Because Chai Pani shares a parking lot with a Cleaners spot and Farm Burger, parking can become very interesting.  However, today was my lucky day.  I spotted a parking space close to the front entrance.  It was around 2:15pm and there was no line in sight.  Today must really be my lucky day.  No parking hassle and no line….As I opened the front door, the beautiful vibrant colors of Mumbai, India greeted me.  The hostess was pleasant and sat me in the front dining room along the wall.  This was the perfect place to sit because I had a bird’s eye view of every angle of the eatery.



I grazed the menu and narrowed my choices to the Bombay Chili Cheese Fries and the Sloppy Jai.  I waited patiently for the waiter to show….15 minutes later.  This was some what of a turnoff.  I don’t think it is indicative of the restaurant because other servers were respectful of their patrons’ time.  I just think I got the wrong waiter.  Once he made it to my table, he did apologize for the wait.  I let him know that it was my first time dining and asked his opinion on the 2 dishes I pre-selected.  It was one thing to read the description of the Bombay Chili fries in the menu (see below) but, it was a totally different experience to hear the words roll off the waiter’s tongue.  The waiter described the dish in more detail and really gave life to it.

The Bombay Chili Cheese Fries was found under this section of the Chai Pani menu:


“Bombay Chili Cheese Fries (g) $7.99 Spiced Lamb hash (kheema) piled high on our masala fries, topped with paneer, onion & cilantro. Drizzled with our special hot stuff & served with tomato chutney.”


I hope the picture translates to total goodness.  This meal did not disappointment.  There was an explosion of flavors with every bite.  I really loved this Indian take on an American dish.  The Bombay Chili Cheese fries can be shared with 2 people especially if they will be eating an entree as well.


To accompany my Bombay Chili Cheese Fries, I decided to try the Lime Ricky which was made of fresh lime juice, house-made raspberry syrup and soda water.  This beverage was so refreshing.  It was not to sweet and it had a little fizz.

What are my quick thoughts on Chai Pani?  Everything seems to be pretty tasty at Chai Pani.  When I scanned the room, most plates were clean.  A young woman that I was sitting next to ordered the Samosa Chaat.  She said that it was so good that she was considering moving to City of Decatur.  If you are new to Indian food, then I would suggest getting your feet wet with the Bombay Chili Cheese Fries or the Sloppy Jai.  Both meals are based on American cuisine.  Even, if you are not into Indian food, the restaurant offers salads.  You can never go wrong with a salad.

Chai Pani is vegan and gluten-free friendly spot. All of the meats and dairy used are all natural and antibiotic & hormone free.  This is not only a great a place to dine for adults but for kids as well.

I highly recommend Chai Pani.


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