Devi: New York’s Most Rewarding Indian Restaurant

Devidevi 1

8 East 18th Street (between 5th Ave. & Broadway)
New York, NY 10003
Reservations: (212) 691-1300 or make a reservation at

Original Opening Date: September 27, 2004
Reopening Date: October 22, 2007 (under the ownership of co-chefs Suvir Saran and Hemant Mathur)


Co-Chefs/Owners: Suvir Saran and Hemant Mathur

Pastry Chef: Surbhi Sahni

Cuisine: Authentic home cooking from the diverse regions of India and
American Masala cooking

Overview: Celebrate the flavors and spirit of the Indian home at Dévi, where co-chefs/owners Hemant Mathur and Suvir Saran recreate authentic regional dishes to be enjoyed in a warm, sumptuous setting. Each plate is a journey-from regional street food to family recipes-with layer upon layer of tastes and textures.

Signature Dishes: Crispy Tangy Okra, Tomatoes, Red Onions (Kararee Bhindi); Bombay Bhel Puri; Kashmiri Mushroom Bruschetta; Manchurian Cauliflower; Coconut Shrimp Biryaani; Lamb-Stuffed Tandoori Chicken; Masala Fried Quail; Kerala Chicken and Egg Roast; Tandoor-Grilled Lamb Chops with Sweet & Sour Pear Chutney; Onion-Parmigiano Kulcha

Desserts: Mango Cheesecake, Rabri Waale Malpue (fennel-scented pancakes), Dévi Bombay Falooda

Wine/Cocktails/Beer: Wines are carefully selected from all over the world to pair with Dévi’s cuisine, emphasizing small producers, organic, biodynamic and sustainable production, as well as women winemakers. Cocktails are inspired by ingredients that are part of the culinary landscape of India; and the beer list features handcrafted, small production beers.

Décor: Architect Larry Bogdanow integrates elements of home and temple – using richly colored Indian textiles, multihued glass lanterns, a hand-carved white marble staircase, and beautifully carved wooden architectural accents.

Seating: 75 seats

Private Dining/Catering: Dévi can accommodate up to 75 for a seated meal; 100 for cocktails. Semi-private balcony accommodates up to 30. Catering is available for out-of-house events, including cocktail receptions, intimate dinner parties, corporate lunches and weddings. Please contact Sonny Solomon, General Manager, at (212) 691-1300.

Hours: Dinner: Mon-Sat, 5:30-11:00 pm; Sun, 5:00-10:00 pm
Lunch: Mon-Fri, 12 noon-2:30 pm
Closed on Thanksgiving Day and Christmas Day

Price Range: Appetizers: $6-$14, Entrees: $14-$34, Desserts: $9
Chef’s Tasting Menu: $85 ($130 with wine)
Two Courses (appetizer, entrée), plus dessert: $35
Any Three Dishes (appetizer, entrée, side), plus dessert: $45
Any Four Dishes (appetizer, 2 entrées, side), plus dessert: $55
Lunch Prix-Fixe Menu: $25

Credit Cards: All major

déviDEVI Interior 1 8119300009

8 east 18th street
new york, ny 10003


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DÉVI, New York’s Most Rewarding Indian Restaurant

By Nancy Walman

Suvir Saran and Hemant Mathur Continue to Delight With Authentic Flavors of Indian Home Cooking.

Originally opened September 27, 2004 and closed on August 27, 2007 by former owner Rakesh Aggarwal, Dévi is the brainchild of Saran and Mathur, who have been bringing fresh flavors to traditional Indian recipes for the past three years.

While several Dévi fanatics’ favorites still remain, such as Crispy Okra Salad, Manchurian Cauliflower and Hemant’s Tandoor-Grilled Lamb Chops with Pear Chutney; Saran has added “new classics” to the seasonal menus, such as Masala Fried Chicken, Spicy Mushroom Toasts and Shrimp and Scallop Poha Paella, inspired by his latest cookbook, American Masala (Clarkson Potter/Publishers).

Four-Year Anniversary, New Menus

Nestled in the middle of the block at 8 East 18th Street in the Flatiron District, award-winning Dévi restaurant, known for its superb Indian home cooking, continues to wow regulars, new neighbors and destination diners from around the world.

To spread their good fortune, Dévi’s culinary team has developed a new á la carte menu with options for guests to also compose their own tasting menus that include a complimentary choice of one of the restaurant’s famous desserts. Mathur and Saran will also introduce a new Chef’s Tasting Menu with seven courses. In addition, beverage consultant Jeff Bartels has created all new Cocktail, Wine and Beer Lists, specifically based on pairability with this dining venue’s distinctive cuisine.

Dinner Menu Designed To Satisfy Individual Appetites and Cravings
It’s the diner’s choice with Dévi’s new menu. Create your own well-priced prix-fixe dinner selecting from the á la carte menu. Choose from two courses (appetizer and entrée, $35), any three dishes (appetizer, entrée and a side; $45), or any four dishes (appetizer, two entrées and a side; $55); and then pick one of Pastry Chef Surbhi Sahni’s delectable desserts as a treat from Dévi.

To experience a full gustatory introduction to Indian home cooking, opt for the ever-changing, seven-course Chef’s Tasting Menu ($85; $130 with wine pairings). We did just that and were delighted.

New offerings include: Double Decker Bread Pakoras; Fish of the Day (in our cases halibut) with Lemon Rasam was worth the price of admission and the best seafood dish we have ever tasted in an Indian restaurant. Sweet & Sour Butternut Squash and Masala Crispy Leeks; Kerala Chicken and Egg Roast; Pappadam Paratha; and Rabri Waale Malpue (fennel-scented pancakes with saffron syrup).

The Challenge of Pairing Beverages With Indian Food
Beverage consultant Jeff Bartels had his work cut out for him when he agreed to totally revamp the Cocktail, Wine and Beer Lists at Dévi. Mathur and Saran are particularly pleased with the outcome and are eager for guests to experience quaffs from all three new lists.

In the cocktail arena, Bartels focused on concocting drinks that reflect the culinary landscape of India. The Mussoorie is made from Rittenhouse Rye, pineapple and saffron syrup, and pineapple gelatin. There’s also Our Pimm’s Cup mixed by adding Pimm’s No.1, Indian tonic water, candied orange and lemon, borage, mint and Moscato, as well as four other new tantalizing cocktails.

Pairability with Indian cuisine was the prime consideration in compiling this new Wine List – eschewing wines with high levels of alcohol and tannins or a strong presence of wood. These qualities would negatively impact on one’s enjoyment of the food featured on Dévi’s menu. In addition, the list is not extensive, but carefully selected to support small producers around the world; winemakers who are farming sustainably; some who are producing biodynamic wines; and women winemakers. Wines are marked accordingly on the list, and in several cases, Bartels was able to procure the last cases of a particular label. A dozen well-chosen wines are available by the glass, and there’s a short list of Dessert, Madeira and Port Wines by the glass and some by the bottle. Bottle prices range from the mid-$30s for organic 2006 Le Cellier du Palais Apremont produced by Beatrice Bernard in Savoie to a $250 bottle of 2005 Quilceda Creek Cabernet Sauvignon, Columbia Valley, Washington, which is described on the list as “Speaks for itself.”

As with the wines, the focus of the Beer List was to find artisan beers from small producers – brewmasters who painstakingly select their ingredients and fermentation regimens. Again, the key to selection was which beers made Dévi’s food even more special. Included on the list are: Seson from Liguria; Hitachino Nest Red Rice Ale from Ibaraki, Japan; Mead The Gueuze made in England and Belgium; and t’ Smisje, an IPA from a microbrewery whose name translates to “rainbow”, produced in Assebroek-Brugge.

Desserts created by pastry chef Surbhi Sahni, who is also Mathur’s wife, include the ethereal Mango Cheesecake and Emperor’s Morsel (crispy saffron bread pudding), as well as new sweet finales like Cashew Nut Kulfi and Fig Cake.

Located in the same spot in Manhattan’s Flatiron District, Dévi (named for the mother goddess) blends aspects of home and temple by using clusters of brightly colored lanterns, rich textiles, beautifully carved wooden architectural elements and a hand-carved, white marble staircase—a space that is both enticing and comfortable, which is a signature element of acclaimed architect Larry Bogdanow. The walls are draped with vibrant orange and gold gauze fabrics and banquettes are swathed in vivid red, burgundy, purple and charcoal colors. The result is an atmosphere of true glamour and style.

Combining Suvir Saran’s creative culinary force with Hemant Mathur’s
masterful command of the tandoor and practical kitchen know-how, Dévi continues to stimulate and delight, and is still a place where you feel warmth and welcome in every bite. If you thought of Indian food as a bowl of spicy curry, visit Devi and discover New York’s best representation of this world class cuisine, presented with elegance and originality. Devi rates A Major on The Walman Report.

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Copyright 2008 By Punchin International. All Rights Reserved

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