First Take: Blue Mango in Raleigh for Stylish Indian

Upscale interior at Blue Mango in Raleigh, NC Triangle Dining

When I think of Indian food, images of a hole-in-the-wall, tandoori smoked dining room with paper menus come to mind.  But out here in North Carolina, Indian cuisine takes on a more upscale presentation, whether you're talking about Saffron or my favorite, Mantra Indian.  Add Blue Mango on S. Glenwood to the gourmet Indian mix.  Located about 3 blocks from Mantra, Blue Mango is located on the same block with Zaky and Tobacco Road Sports.  Inside the place is upscale and modern, water sculpture in front and a large bar backed by colored light squares and TV's.  The dining room is large, mostly four tops with a handful of small high-back upholstered booths on the side.  My friends in stopped in for lunch which presented a limited menu of entrees along with soup-salad and rice-naan.  I went with my usual favorite, chicken tikka masala along with a side chicken biryani for the table.

Chicken biryani at Blue Mango in Raleigh, NC Triangle Dining

Drinks are brought to the table along with our soups and salads.  Immediately I notice the large plates for the salads which means a big presentation.  My soup is a mild, tomato puree which is decent but not a creamy as I'd prefer.  Next comes a nice basket of soft, nicely baked naan, without much oil or butter.  My main shows up in a art-deco white bowl along with a large cup of chicken biryani.  My first bite of the tikka masala is decent but not great.  The sauce seems a bit simple and lacking the depth of what I'm used to: tomato, spicy, creamy and rich.  The chicken chunks are decent but again, they don't blow me away.  The biryani is solid but a bit over-cooked with the rice sticking together in clumps.  Typically I prefer the biryani tossed where the grains of rice are separated a bit.  And while I can't say the dishes I tried at Blue Mango were bad, I wasn't overly impressed either.  One area where they also need work is the service.  While they are going for the hip-black mod look, I found the staff a bit aloof and unpolished.  It took a while for the drinks to make it to the table and I had an overall feeling that they were just not that service-oriented.  So what can I say, the Indian food and offerings at Blue Mango are ok but with Mantra right around the corner, I doubt I'll be here too often even though it's in my hood.

 

Blue Mango

222 Glenwood Avenue, Suite 101

Raleigh, NC 27603

919.322.2760

 

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