The Triangle is the home of the multi-ethnic restaurant to me. Chinese-Thai, Korean-Japanese, Japanese-Thai, Burgers-Japanese and more, covering two ethnic cuisines usually signals to me that a restaurant is trying to cover multiple bases to broaden their audience. But unfortunately, it often means they don't do either particularly well. Enter Bill-La's Pollo a la Brasa! I love Mami Nora's Peruvian chicken and when I heard that Peruvian chicken was coming to Cary, my food tail started wagging. When I heard it was a combo Peruvian-chicken and Indian place, well the little mental alarms went off. And I hate to say it but they were mostly spot-on. I had lunch at Bill-La's Peruvian-Indian Chicken Chef's and let's just say it was an interesting but mixed experience!
I headed over on a Wednesday afternoon for lunch with a co-worker, Bill-La's is located in a small plaza across from the now-defunct Circus restaurant. From out front you see the two signs for Peruvian chicken and Chefs of India. The interior is quite nice, plush red-upholstered chairs, a long dining room with a smallish u-shaped buffet area. The lady who seats us asks if we'd like the buffet but it's all Indian eats! So we grab a seat by the windows and then ask for menus. Now things start to get complicated! The menu is all Indian and we're wondering where this char-broiled Peruvian chicken. So the waitress stops by, we ask and voila, here comes the Peruvian menu. And it's short, definitely pricier than Mami Nora's. All this waiting around has got my friend hungry for Indian so we decide not to decide and go for the Indian buffet AND the $10 whole chicken special!
Up at the buffet I get the chicken biryani, butter chicken tandoori chicken and some veggies. When we return to the table, there's a quartered naan for us. The Indian eats at Chefs of India is pretty middle of the road. I found the spicing to be pretty bland and the best part of the buffet was the tandoori chicken, decent stuff. After one plate I wasn't too thrilled but here comes our Peruvian chicken to the rescue! Four well browned pieces with some aji sauce, a small plate of rice and beans. And yep, here we go again. I thought the chicken was under-spiced and a bit luke-warm, probably not recently roasted. Taking another look at the menu and it mentions roasted chicken with Indian spices?! So I am confused and I think rightfully so. Two very distinct ethnic cuisines sort of merged together in a physical sense with a slightly mixed menu hosting Indian-Peruvian roasted chicken?! Yeah, I sorta scratched my head on this one and all wouldn't have matter if the food rocked but overall, everything was sort of meh for me at Chefs of India. Which is really disappointing because I really enjoy Indian AND Peruvian but they were doing a really average job with both, sigh. And yeah, my initial opinion about multi-ethnic restaurants? Well let's just say I haven't been impressed. There's a saying that when you try to please everyone, you sometimes please no one and that's sort of the way I feel about the combined Bill-La's Pollo a la Brasa and Chefs of India. Sticking to one thing and doing it very well rather than just throwing a mish-mash of options is the better way...
748 E. Chatham Street
Cary, NC 27511
3.5 stars out of 5
Chef's of India - Reviewer: Ron Wen - Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars