Miamians are really particular when it comes to which spot serves the best Indian food–Bombay Darbar, Zaika, Ghee? Allow us to throw yet another mouth-watering eatery into the ring: Naan Indian Eats. Feeling some fluffy goodness? Naan is the new kid on the block popping up with fun, delicious, fast-casual Indian eats at the temporarily-closed (due to COVID-19) Taquiza in South Beach.
Recently opened for weekend takeout and delivery on October 2nd, the quality of food and the entire experience makes you feel like Naan has been around for years. And it many ways, it has. Like many of us, Miami events and catering pros, Alex Lipin and Catherine Vallin of H&C Collective, have had to shift gears as a result of the pandemic. Their combined decades of experience in Miami’s culinary and event production scene trained them for this very moment of creative problem solving. Pair that with two of our city’s most authentic chefs, Anthonidoss Ramesh Abraham and Adam Abbey, and a partnership with the kind souls behind Taquiza–and Naan Indian Eats was born.
This brilliant team is breaking down the barriers that the niche flavors and traditional dishes of India’s many regions can sometimes build up. The intimidation of unknown plates is no longer a thing at Naan, where a sophisticated menu meets fast-casual simplicity and efficiency. Here, Indian food is at its most accessible. Here, soul food is dipped into…many, many times.
The star of the pop-up concept is, of course, the naan–which the team likes to refer to as the “fluffy goodness” and fluffy it sure is. At the risk of sounding like a beloved Forrest Gump character, the naan selection is endless–naan topped with every seasoning under the sun, stuffed naan, garlic naan…you get the picture. Aside from getting the dippable bread to the perfect level of fluff, their traditional tandoor oven also sizzles up a variety of protein.
You can start with their drool-worthy list of shareables like chicken wings (some of the best in town!), koftas or meatballs which come in both the lamb or Impossible variety, and three kinds of samosas. Move on to build a bowl or platter with dozens of options to mix and match. While decision fatigue might be an issue, we assure you that there’s no wrong choice. Go classic with chicken tikka or get authentic with palak paneer. Add on sides of all kinds from rice, to vegetables and lentils to round out what will be an incredibly satisfying marriage of flavors. And don’t worry, a mango lassi is also within arm’s reach.
While the food is genuinely bona fide, the entire experience feels as homegrown and welcoming as we all need from a new neighborhood joint right now. The cheeky branding, created in partnership with the local digital content mavens at VACO Studio, adds even more personality to the pop-up–turning their trademark naan into a little dude with plenty of attitude. It might all be on-trend with the many pop-ups making names for themselves around the city, but Naan Indian Eats serves it all up with a heaping side of warmth and soul. Familiar and refreshing at the same time.
All photos by VACO Studio.