Maya Indian Bar & Grill, located on Tuttle Street in Wakefield and occupying the space of the former Laurie's 9:09, opened, making it the only Indian restaurant in the town. There aren't many Indian restaurants in the surrounding area, with a couple in Stoneham and about three in Woburn. I was intrigued when I learned the restaurant was coming and after a few visits there, I believe it's a welcome addition to the area and I'll be returning again soon to check out more of their menu.
The restaurant offers dishes from many different regional cuisines of India, including Kashmiri, Punjabi, Bengali, Malabar, Goan and Madras. They want their customers to "think beyond curries" and experience all of the diversity of Indian cuisines. They are a scratch kitchen, preparing all of their own food, and that is clearly evident from their dishes.
As you can see in the following pictures, the food on the buffet looked appealing.
As for the dishes I tried on the buffet, I was largely impressed with their taste and quality, especially the different chicken dishes. The Chicken Tikka Masala had a pleasing, rich tomato taste while the Chicken Tikka was relatively moist and tender, with some nice char elements. The Chicken Korma was a spicier dish, though not overly so, and might have been my favorite of the three. The Veggie Biryani was also one of my favorite dishes, with a nice blend of spices. Overall, I saw much potential in this restaurant as the food was quite good and it led me to visit a couple additional times on my own, including getting take-out one evening.
In addition, I'll note that the lunch buffet has improved since my initial visit. They have added a few more items to the buffet, and there is more diversity in their meat dishes, such as including fish and goat items. As they are still fairly new, it is good to see that they are seeking to improve the dining experience.
They have a full bar, with wine, beer and cocktails. The Wine selection, with glasses from $7-$14, are basically all big name brands, nothing really exciting. The Beer list is more diverse, including 7 beers on tap and 3 Indian beers. The Cocktail list has some interesting cocktails with an Indian touch, such as the use of Mango Puree or Tamarind juice. Maybe try a Tamarind Mojito or a Mayatini.
I don't have photos of a couple dishes, including the Lamb Vindaloo ($18). They ask you how spicy hot you want the dish, basically low, medium or high heat, and we opted for the medium. The Vindaloo was excellent, with plenty of tender lamb, and a fairly spicy hot sauce, but which had plenty of flavor from the other spices and ingredients. We also tried the Chicken Lagan ($16), a sauce I'd never had before. The Lagan is a Hyderabadi slow cooked creamy sauce made with roasted nuts and spices. We got this dish too with a medium heat and I was impressed with its complex flavors.
I've only just begun to explore all the menu options available at Maya Indian Bar & Grill but so far they have presented some delicious, well-made food. Service has generally been very good, except for one incident where they forgot to bring me an order go Basmati rice. However, they have been open for less than two months, so allowances need to be made as they work out the usual opening kinks. I certainly plan on returning soon, and strongly recommend you check out this new Indian restaurant as well.