King’s Kurry is popular throughout Zurich, and is generally recognized as the place to get Indian food. It’s located at Freyastrasse 3 (map), near the Wiedikon Bahnhof. The interior is really cool, probably the most exotic Indian place I’ve visited between Zurich and Detroit. The ceiling is sky blue, the knives and forks look like cool futuristic surgical tools and the bowls look pieces belonging to a collection from MoMA in New York.
Like in every Indian restaurant, King Fisher beer is on the drink list. You can get all the tasty favorites like tandoori, palack paneer, samosas, dosas, chutney, mango lassies, and pakoras. As an experience, King’s Kurry is top notch. The lassi comes with a K drizzled on top, the cool triangular tandoori plate, the curved-handle bowls; all pretty cool and for sure made the meal a memorable one.
Ordering at King’s Kurry was also an experience, the waiter seemed to talk to at a rather quick pace, and when the topic of appetizers came up, in the confusion – it seems we ordered samosas, nan and rice.
Apparently we’d actually ordered the King’s Plater. A nice collection of pakoras, tandoori chicken, fish, chutney, and dosas. This offered a nice collection of different tastes, it was a bit much as the main meal was still coming, and the pakoras were cold. Apparently it also came with a price tag of 55 CHF, which we discovered when the bill came. If we’d known the price we would have just indulged in a side of samosas.
Talking quickly and bringing out a side dish is not uncommon is some places. It’s especially common in places like the el Greco restaurant on Zakynthos (in Greece). At el Greco they dropped off some oiled peppers as a side order and then charged us 2 Euros on the bill. This way the restaurant makes a little bit more off of the tourists who will be gone the next week. 2 Euros is ok, 55 CHF is a bit much for a blind-sided appetizer.
It’s more a matter of principle than the cost, you shouldn’t have to order and then carefully check every single charge to make sure you’re not buying something unexpected. So long as the extra charge is small, it’s ok. As a tourist you want to be carefree and enjoy your time. For the restaurant it’s a question of long time customers versus short term profits.
Tourists represent shot-term gains, they’re there, spend a lot of money (hopefully) and then leave. Locals represent long-term revenue, so if you screw with them you screw with your ability to make a consistent profit month to month and year to year. At King’s Kurry, half of us were tourists, half were foreign locals, who probably will never go back.
The tandoori was good, it came on a large black triangular plate, if you’ve been heavily medicated, the tandoori will probably induce visions of UFOs and Martians coming to abduct you. The tandoori was yummy, but not much better than what I’d cook at home with tandoori mix. The rice was some of the best I’ve ever tried and the nan was also quite kick-ass. I ordered the palak paneer with three chilies, and it was at my limit of hot. This is absolutely outstanding for Zurich, where most places are mild for the European palate.
After a sampling of the King’s Kurry experience, the taste in my mouth makes me feel that presentation was more prominent than quality. I’m not an Indian chef, but I can dish out a chana masalla or dal without much of a second thought. I guess this is generally true, it’s easy to cook an awesome meal at home, you go out for the atmosphere. In the US I go to Indian restaurants because the food is generally not that expensive and usually quite tasty. Considering that it’s made of basic ingredients and wait staff are usually all related, it makes sense that it should be cheaper. Otherwise I cook Inidan at home because it’s fast, healthy, and cheap. For Zurich it feels like a lot to drop a wad of cash on a palak paneer, plus rice, plus nan.
When faced with the prospect of a future visit to King’s Kurry, I’d rather drop 250 CHF on a new dishes, a cook book, and recreate the the experience in the apartment. Then the dinner would be more personal, and I wouldn’t leave wondering where all the money went.
Indian Palace left a completely different taste in my mind, although not the most originally named – Indian place (there’s many in Detroit) is my choice for going out in Zurich. Inidan Palace is located at Schaffhauserstrasse 129 (map) near the Milchbuch tram stop. The prices are about the same, a little less than King’s Kurry, but I enjoyed the experience far more. I ordered palak paneer with potatoes, and the dinner was served in small bowls with a candle below to keep everything warm. This is where King’s Kurry and India Palace diverge. At India Palace the focus was on the excellent savory things we were eating – not on what the cutlery looked like.
Also like every Indian restaurant in the world (that I’ve been to) both places offer an Indian buffet during lunch, which is the thing to do if you want tasty Indian food in Zurich without dropping a wad of cash (usually the buffets are around 20 CHF). A rather extensive list of Indian restaurants in Zurich can be found here.
8 thoughts on “Zurich Scribbles – King’s Kurry and Indian Palace”
So, what do you get to eat now?? Please, tell us about the sushi/sashimi places over there! Did you find any nice hot spring to go to?
Yes, there has been a lot of sushi. I eat rice balls for breakfast, sometimes sashmi for lunch, and then maybe more rice balls and a tempura shrimp for dinner.
Long story short, the trip to Hokkaido got canceled due to a Typhoon, so no hot springs yet. I did however handle the new Canon EOS-1Ds Mark III with the 50 mm f/1.2 lens at the Canon showroom in Ginza. Many stories and pictures to come.
I hope you did not drool over the EOS-1Ds or that you have a good drool insurance…;-).
Well, actually I did drool a lot now that you mention it. But of course the new Mark III is weather sealed, so really it had little effect. There was also a box of silk napkins next to the camera, I think the drooling thing happens a lot there.
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Here is the new place in Zürich for the lovers of Indian Food!
The new Tandoori BBQ in Zurich looks pretty sweet, I'll check it out some time, thanks for the info.
Dear American Peyote,
Just came across your very thorough review, which I'll share with our staff.
I'd like to apologise on behalf of King's Kurry for the confusion with your starter.
Although CHF12 is not much for a starter platter in Zurich (and the amount of work we put into it!), I agree it is about the principle and honesty.
If you send me your postal address, we'll send a voucher as an apology, since we'd like you to try us again to hopefully make up for the waiter's mistake. We're releasing a new menu in April.
I hope and trust it was an intentional mistake, since we train our staff not to sell food, but to try to offer polite hospitality and a pleasant dining experience.
Thanks for your understanding, and best regards