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“Enjoyed eating outside - good food”

Vimala's Curryblossom Cafe
Ranked #21 of 296 Restaurants in Chapel Hill
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Indian
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch
Restaurant details
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch
Level 4 Contributor
39 reviews
18 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
“Enjoyed eating outside - good food”
Reviewed April 5, 2013 via mobile

Went here for a birthday dinner with about 15 folks. Arrived early, so went to the bar. They have good beer selections, although only 4 or 5 on tap. The rest in bottles. The Indian food tasted good, it's reasonably priced. They are accomodating to vegetarians, vegans, and gluten-free. Service was pleasant and fast. The outdoor dining on this beautiful spring night was pleasant. The place was fairly full most of the night. I would certainly go again.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank nickwfu
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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147 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    80
    39
    20
    5
    3
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Chapel Hill, North Carolina, United States
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“So very impressed with the food and service...”
Reviewed March 26, 2013

I had a wonderful time at Vimala's Cafe today. We arrived early (15 mins before open), and were greeted, seated (even though its self-seating), and watered immediately. I work nomadically for a living, and have spent many a day in Indian establishments, some generic, some unique, some amazing. Vimala's hits the last two square on the head! Perfectly spiced, huge dosa's, great tea options (and Kapi - cumin flavored espresso), and all from local farm-raised, non-corporate base ingredients. Literally every member of the staff except the back cooks stopped to say hello, and ask if we needed anything - every single time they passed by.

I can't say enough, and won't say more... JUST GO!

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank John T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mebane, North Carolina
Level 6 Contributor
307 reviews
172 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 333 helpful votes
“Average Indian Food / Poor Service”
Reviewed March 5, 2013

My husband and I went with numerous colleagues to eat at this socially responsible restaurant. The Indian owner is known for giving a lot back to the Chapel Hill community. Both of us are huge lovers of Indian cuisine. We have had great Indian food in India, London, and Vancouver, BC. Upon numerous rave reviews, we decided to try out Vimala's Curryblossom Café.
For a Monday night, the place was rather busy. One orders their food like a fast food restaurant. There was only one cashier and her order taking was extremely slow. The line started to snake through the restaurant before we could place our order. My husband exclaimed, “Thank goodness we are not at the end. It will take them 30 minutes to just order their food!” Getting adult beverages with our meals is rather confusing as there is a bar in the other room. We had to ask how we could get two pints of Kingfisher beer (We were thrilled to see it on tap).
We ended up ordering Tandoori Chicken Thali – a large platter with a sampling of many small dishes, including basmati rice, dal, vegetable bhaji, chutneys, raita, chappati and pappadum. An order of naan was added to our meal. We also had some Pakoras. Vimala’s uses local farm-fresh vegetable to make these fritters that have a crunchy chickpea batter with cilantro and tangy-sweet tamarind chutneys. The seasoning was rather mild for Indian food. It may be suitable for the average American palate, but for lovers of good Indian food, it was way too bland. A friend of ours who has been to many Indian restaurants and sat next to us concurs with this analysis of the seasonings. Our dinner was rather large thus we were able to take some of it home.
The décor of Vimala’s is more like a fast food joint. The table and chairs were primitive. A TripAdvisor reviewer last year stated it correctly that it is like a "take out shack”. Since it is winter, cold air rushed in to the restaurant when the door was opened. One of our friends that ate with us was very cold and had to wear her coat while eating her dinner!
Service was extremely slow! My husband received his order after numerous other people who were behind us in line. My order took an additional twenty minutes to make it to my table! I was just about to go back to the cashier and ask her where our food was when the server finally came with my food. The staff made apologies for the extremely long wait for food, but this was not good enough for the average fare and lousy service.
This is definitely not one of the four best restaurants in Chapel Hill, and it is certainly not the place to go for good Indian food. The next time we want good Indian food, we will have to go to Morrisville and Cary as they have numerous Indian restaurants due to their large Indian population.

  • Visited February 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank MagyarNC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Winter Springs, Florida
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Goat Curry”
Reviewed January 31, 2013

As the title mentions it, if you are in the Raleigh area and love Goat Curry, make it a point to visit the place and try their curry. It was awesome - a little underspiced, but still really amazing. The chicken plate and veggie options are also quite good from what i heard from family and friends who were with me. But if you love goat curry do visit.

  • Visited January 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank naveen e
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Santiago Metropolitan Region, Chile
Level 4 Contributor
34 reviews
21 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“good and fresh”
Reviewed January 23, 2013

Good food, different from the typical Indian restaurant. They use fresh and local ingredients, and change their menu according to what is available seasonally. They recently opened a bar that stays open until late.

  • Visited December 2012
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
Thank pilarv1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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