A new Indian restaurant has opened at the old Frederick Towne Mall, in the location of the former Ground Round. Taj Mahal Grill & Bar opened on July 9 and has been serving up traditional Indian fare with social distancing measures in place since.
Owner Indarjeet Yadav formerly owned an Indian restaurant in Rockville, which he sold several years ago. He’s lived in Ballenger Creek for the last six years and decided to start another restaurant, this time in Frederick.
The restaurant serves lunch and dinner, and will have a lunch buffet once it becomes safe, Yadav said. They currently serve bottled wine and beer but will soon have a full bar as well as draft beer. The restaurant is still looking to hire kitchen help and a bartender.
The Frederick News-Post sat down with Vadav to talk about the new restaurant. This interview has been edited for length and clarity.
Can you tell me about why you wanted to open the restaurant?
I researched in Frederick, and I could not see any restaurant that can give us the real Indian taste, with the homemade spices. So then it made me think we have the location and all the people are waiting for good Indian food that can give the natural, ethnic taste.
What has it been like to open during the pandemic?
We got delayed due to COVID-19, and when we opened July 9 we had the social distance of six feet or more. All the employees have to wash their hands and use hand sanitizer. When the customer comes inside they must wear a face mask. We also do curbside pickup. If a customer says “I want to pay, I don’t want to come inside,” we’ll set the food outside of the curbside pickup. ... Also, once we do the dining we clean with a sanitizer. The seats, the tables, everything.
What are your favorite dishes on the menu?
We’ve been selling a lot of chicken tikka masala, butter chicken, goat curry, and the appetizers we’re selling a lot of chicken momo (Himalayan style dumplings). And also we do the lamb chops.
What are you looking forward to?
The main thing I’m trying to do is keep the Indian taste and try to introduce exactly what the Indian food means. Because most of the time when other restaurant owners open their restaurant and they make up the taste of the Indian spices. And that’s the main thing we try to introduce. If you go to India or Nepal, you can get that taste. We try to bring the same taste, the real authentic taste.