Silver Lake: Naya Indian Restaurant
A couple of weeks ago, I was invited to check out the sleek new Naya Sunset restaurant and Naya Lounge. The Indian restaurant replaced Tantra, another Indian restaurant. With new owners and decor, Chef Imran created bar and dinner menus to match the beautiful settings.
We started off with cocktails and snacks in the Naya Lounge. The archways in the room made for dramatic scenery. It felt like sitting in the middle of a fairy tale. I tried the Classic Mantra (Johnny Walker Black Label, Benedictine, sweet vermouth) which was very nice. Normally it’s $13 but during happy hour, the specialty cocktails are only $6. And beer is $3, wine is $5 and other cocktails are $4. I’m really not sure how they’re making any money.
We also enjoyed some snacks including a variety of samoosas and Singh’s spiced peanuts.
What I find unique about Naya is the food is described as California-influenced, Indian inspired. You might find the tuna and avocado almost more authentically Californian than Indian but still works because of the spices.
Some other specialty cocktails that caught my eye include:
Spa in Goa– Don Julio Blanco, lime, agave, jalepeno, cucumber
The Relapse– Laphroaig, pineapple, simple syrup, lime, mint
Kiss of Naya – Bacardi gold, pineapple, creme de coconut, lime, ginger, basil
Those who enjoy sweeter cocktails may like:
Pinilla Dream– Stoli vanilla, pineapple juice, mint
Buddha’s Bed– Stoli vanilla, Liquor 43, pineapple
The Dancing Lotus- Belvedere, Cointreau, lychee juice, pomegranate
Mango Method– Stoli Vanilla, mango puree, ginger ale
The Tantra– Myer’s dark rum, mango puree, pineapple, ginger ale, mint, lime
I did also try the Scorpion Rose (Scorpion mezcal anejo, grapefruit soda, lime, agave, rosemary) but it was a little too sweet for me. I was talking to someone who said they loved sweet drinks and I thought she might like Shiva’s Revenge (vodka, triple sec, amaretto, peach schnapps, sweet & sour, cranberry).
We headed to dinner and entered this dreamy wonderland with billowing white curtains. We found ourselves at a quiet table in the back and started off our meal with a few light salads including the green salad the sprout street salad. I really enjoyed the sprout street salad. The chickpeas, potato, tortilla chips, sprouts with the sweetened yogurt dressing was great.
We also had a sweet and sour potato salad with crispy baby potatoes with a sweet tamarind yogurt sauce.
More appetizers arrived. The whimsical silky lamb kabob came crowned with an onion ring. And four pieces of chicken were tikka chicken but each piece with different spices.
I was impressed by the a la carte curries including the fenugreek and green pea curry along with the yellow lentils curry. They went really well with the garlic naan. Plain and other naans are available including cheese, olive and spinach.
More curries came out including the chicken, lamb and prawns.
My favorites were the eggplant curry with mustard chili, coconut curry sauce and Naya risotto and the seabass. The apricot patagonian seabass came with apricot curry and black rice.
Our meal came to an end with dessert. There weren’t too sweet and was a great way to end the evening. For those who wanted a hot boozy beverage (it’s the season for ’em), the Hot Yogi (coffee, Metaxa Amphora 7 Star brandy, Galliano, Grand Marnier) may be the way to go.
I would like to come back to try the more fusion-y items like the Naya pot pie, Everest lamb (lamb ossobuco) and the lemon chili scallops. The sesame stir-fried cauliflower and seasoned okra also sounded good under the a la carte sides.
The outside patio was under construction when I went but the hope is the patio will be finished by New Year’s eve. There are also special menus for Christmas and New Year eves. Christmas eve is just $30 a person and includes 5 courses. There are two options for New Year’s eve. The five course meal with open bar is $75. Or if you just want to party, come 10:30 PM and after for $60 per person which includes open bar. The meal and open bar option sounds amazing.
For really beautiful pictures of the food, check out Stuff She Likes.