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“best Indian food in Austin, or anywhere”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Swad

Swad
Ranked #1,808 of 3,683 Restaurants in Austin
Price range: $1 - $20
Cuisines: Indian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Reservations, Seating, Takeout
Neighborhood: Downtown
Houston, Texas
Level Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
“best Indian food in Austin, or anywhere”
Reviewed December 1, 2012

I am Indian and have been to dozens of Indian restaurants all over the country, expensive and cheap. This place is the gold standard. The modest surroundings belie the spiciest, freshest, most melt-in your mouth Indian food around! Try the idli and the thali--major bargains. The only thing I don't like there is the raita, which I think is too sweet. I guess some people like it that way.

While I also like Tarka, Bombay Bistro, Asiana, and other Austin desi joints, I always go back to Swad for the best food.

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank hillcountry123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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25 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Los Angeles
Level Contributor
24 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
“Swad-Authantic Gujarati food”
Reviewed November 22, 2012

A Hole in a Wall. strip mall location. Starving for a Gujarati food. Hotel Manager recomanded this place. Thali- a combo for all Gujarati food, was a best choice. Rotali, Dal & Shak. Side of samosa and Shrikhand. Enjoyed my dinner. Will come back.

  • Visited November 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank YatraGuruLosAngeles
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Texas
Level Contributor
73 reviews
43 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 322 helpful votes
“Swad-tastic!!!”
Reviewed October 11, 2011

Swad is a vegetarian Indian restaurant located on North Lamar. It is a very unassuming, basic, and no frills. You order at the register and seat yourself. The vegetarian dishes are very tasty and surprisingly filling. Go to Swad for the delicious vegetarian food at low prices. Dont go to Swad for the service or fancy decor...because there isn't any. My wife and I shared the thali and the chole bhatura. Both were delicious!

  • Visited October 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
9 Thank Traveller20203
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Austin, Texas
Level Contributor
71 reviews
41 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“Not Afraid to Add Favor”
Reviewed April 8, 2011

Finally, an Indian restaurant not afraid to add flavor. Swad offers a modest environment (to say the least), very reasonable prices (can't refute that when I got stuffed for $10.77), and a menu restricted to vegetarian food (but who has to eat meat every meal). After so many Indian food disappointments in Austin, there is Swad... I really like it

Went three times over last two months, and had the thali combo-platter each dinner, while my wife had a masala dosa once. Thali was great on two of the three visits. Very flavorful, great contrasts, substantial portion. Hopefully the thali on the failing night was due to the burden of a large party of 15 people (capacity is probably 30!).

At Swad, about 8 small metal bowls comprise the thali. The selection changes slightly. Last night, one of the the absolute winners was the potato masala, a relative to the famed chicken masala, except this time at this restaurant it was very flavorful and without a trace of Campbell's soup. (The Clay Pit killed this dish with too much vinegar and Bombay Bistro's version was too tomato-like.) The two other standout dishes were the spinach with chick peas which had some heat and a Gujarati kadhi soup, which provided a fabulous, palate elevating contrast to all the other dishes. There also was a pleasing, basic lentil dahl, a sweet yogurt raita, bowl of rice and, the only disappointments: a bland selection of fruit and a weird mango paste dessert.

The breads that accompany the thali were 4 huge poori breads, a crispy pappadum and two fried pakora balls which resembled falafel. The pakora were dry and should have been served with tamarind sauce and a chutney. But I was so in awe of the overall portion when it arrived that I did not bother to ask them for the condiments. I was very full and satisfied.

So my advice is to go, expect the decor to be minimal, expect to see some Indian clientele, and know that you will get some solid Indian food with FLAVOR for a low price.

  • Visited April 2011
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank mylesfire
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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