Cloud Naan

I just had an incredible Indian sandwich. Indian sandwich, you ask? Yes indeed! Before today, I had never even heard of one before, and my coworker Nora had not either. But nevertheless we went with Eric (who himself only just discovered Indian sandwiches a few weeks ago) to test out these innovations at Naan & Beyond, a little hole-in-the-wall doing an AWESOME, line-out-the-door lunchtime business, near L St and Connecticut NW in DC.

And yes, for these tikka sandwiches, they quite literally fill a fresh, pillowy, chewy, BIG piece of naan bread (the popular Indian flatbread you normally order with Indian curries) with a myriad of addictively delicious ingredients, tandoori style. Everything is marinated in fabulous Indian spices and then skewered and cooked in the large clay Indian oven, the Tandoor. The grilled taste is unbelievable. You can get marinated chicken, lamb, shrimp, paneer (homemade cheese), veggie (zucchini, mushroom, onion and eggplant grilled) or sheesh (shredded beef). I had chicken, which is supposedly marinated overnight – and boy does it taste like it. They were probably the most tender, juicy pieces of skewered chicken I have ever had, with an absolute explosion of amazing Indian herbal flavors. They pack the meat or vegetarian filling in very generously, but also still manage to add some really good accoutrements: a light cabbage slaw and tomatoes for some crunch and tang, and a choice of their hot chutney, mint chutney or mango chutney to drizzle on your sandwich. The chutney (I got mint with my chicken) really put me over the top. Again, flavors were central here with the chutney itself, but even more so in what flavors it was able to bring out in the contents of the sandwich. My one complaint was that I ran out of the chutney before I finished the sandwich and really wanted more for the last third, because each bite was so dreamily tasty.

It is food like this that makes me happy, makes a workday go by more enjoyably, even make me want to devote the last 15 minutes of my lunch to telling as many hungry readers as I have where to find an ultimate sandwich and ultimate Indian tastes -- all in one $6 sandwich.

Check out my reviews of this place in even more detail at Menuism.com!

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