Empress of India, Waterloo, Canada
Let me tell you, turnip tastes good curried. Sliced and cooked in a Jalfriezi-style with turmeric, onions and green peppers, it’s time to take a bow Empress of India chef.
And taking a bow for food at the end of a buffet shift takes some doing. Buffet food never usually scores, let’s be honest, but it works for me if it’s Indian and I have plenty of time to try ‘just a little bit’ of everything. Getting there with ten minutes to spare, ain’t so good.
You could argue the food should be as good at the end as it is at the start or you could argue getting there late is my own silly fault.
I blame the long King Road (in all its East, West, South and North guises) that links Kitchener and Waterloo, which meant me getting off the bus way past the Empress and heading into a bar (purely for directions you’ll understand).
Ten minutes before buffet closing means dried-out looking food, no restocking and almost no desserts left, and curry in a hurry. So it’s to the chef’s credit the food was still pretty decent.
Following on from the turnip was a tasty Chicken Korma, even though it was actually a Chicken Curry (the waitress admitted ‘this is supposed to be a korma’) and good, moist pillau rice.
And even though time was pushed there was still enough for nicely marinated Chicken Tandoori thighs, a crunchy Vegetable Curry, curried chick peas and slices of nan to mop it all up. Only the bony Lamb Curry didn’t appeal. Good work chef.
The lunchtime buffet (Mon-Fri) comes in at $11.99, but by time you’ve added a Kingfisher ($4.85), taxes and tip that’s flown over $20.
Empress of India, 103 King Street North, Waterloo, Ontario, N2J 2X5, Canada. Tel: +1 519 883 1314. Open: Mon-Sat 11.30am-2pm and 5pm -10pm (10.30pm Fri-Sat), Sun 4pm-9pm.
* Now moved to 34 King Street South.
Empress of India snapshot
Food ① ② ③
Decor ① ② ③
Value ① ② ③ ④
Atmosphere (Wednesday lunchtime) ①
Service and friendliness ① ② ③ ④