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See also: Pookie's

Foods from Cumin and Goan

2008 Feb 13
That's a shame: I did like it the one time I went.

2008 Feb 13
As a follow-up, the owner (Barb?) also mentioned (over the ph) that she is available for catering. I don't know if she'll carry on under the "Cumin and Goan" label, but their site is still up with contact details.

2008 Feb 12
itchy feet sent this to me: "Restaurant has closed (sadly); owner reports that she's sold the locale and a Thai restaurant will open in its place."

Bummer.. and I never got to try it. :(

2007 Sep 30
A bunch of friends and I (including my Goan fiancée) headed out to Cumin and Goan last week in order to A) have some delicious non-Northern Indian food and B) to see how their cooking lived up to my special lady-friend's Mom ;)

Before I start, though, I do want to point out that I'm not sure I understand LiveToEat's previous comment saying that the Xacuti is not a "real" Goan dish, because it most assuredly is Goan. (Unless it was meant that the one at Cumin and Goan isn't "real"?)

Anyway, so we had fish cutlets (sausage-shaped fish croquettes) and potato cakes (mashed potato filled with spiced, ground beef and fried) to start out with, followed by xacuti (lamb curry with toasted, ground cocount and a bit of heat), sorpotel (pork curry with I-still-don't-know-what-goes-into-this and a good amount of heat), palak paneer (spinach puree with paneer, a bit light on the paneer), rice, and a goodly amount of naan and papadum to soak up the deliciousness.

On the whole, it was good, honest, home-cooked stuff, and this coming from a fellow who was convinced it would be terrible. The sorpotel was universally the favourite of our table; the xacuti was good, but missing something in depth of flavour. I couldn't tell you what, even though I have a bag of xacuti masala in my freezer right now.

And the place is fairly reasonably priced, too. Our meal fed five with leftovers, and that plus six beers plus two ounces of feni (cashew firewater, try it if you want to drink something guaranteed to put hair on your chest) came out to $25 per person after tax and tip.

I think we'll probably go back, if not only to keep us going in those dry spells between trips to Hamilton!

2007 Jun 27
Cumin & Goan …. May be just Goin’ …….

Revisited Cumin & Goan a number of times and the latest report, well, I think Barb Gomes finally recognizes me …

This time, I tried the Lamb Shakruti, not a ‘real’ goan dish, but nevertheless it is shown as ‘toasted coconut & spices’ and I have had charuti/sharuti/xacuti before…..

I think in this dish it really shows that Barb does not know how to use the tamarind to bring out the sour. Vinegar just doesn’t do it.

I also tried the Kachumbar, another ‘ok’, as was the raita, which Desbrisay raved about … And the only other two pickles/chutneys were mixed veg/celandro, both of which were very good, but an accoutrement does not a meal make. (The Prawn/tomato was to die for …)

So if you want Goan, the Sorppatel is the only really decent dish. Pork vindaloo will be very good. Maybe try the Fish Curry, but if it’s anything like the sharuti, I’d pass….

Does that mean you should not go to this place ? …. Not at all …. There are a lot of Northern style Indian restaurants (most tandoori places) and Southern style Indian restaurants (Ceylonta, Coconut Lagoon ), none of which are outstanding in Ottawa (go to Toronto), but if you want Western Indian food, Cumin & Goan is the place in Ottawa.

Now how about an ‘Eastern Indian Restaurant’, i.e., Bengali, Hyderabadi or Burmese….

Do we really want to figure in the multicultural culinary world that is Canada? I rank Vancouver, Toronto and Quebec City, even Montreal before Ottawa. Ottawa is way overpriced and truly provincial in terms of food and places to eat and value for money …… Chinese and Indian food are two very good examples. Either the restaurateurs think we don’t know how to eat, or they just figure there is no competition ….

Happy being happy, especially during these holidays ….

2006 Nov 13

2007 Jun 27
lunch buffet only good if you want to try some of the stuff on the menu that's out of the ordinary....