448 E. Main Street, Montrose, 970/252-8777
Even in large, ethnically diverse cities in the U.S., to find a restaurant that serves dishes from India, Nepal and the Himalayas may be no easy task. To find one in Montrose, one would think it would be even harder. It’s not.
For years, residents across the region have made it a habit to stop at this downtown restaurant for a quick lunch at its popular buffet or for an Indian or Nepalese inspired dinner. For one Ridgway resident, a trip to Montrose means a stop at Guru’s for simple yet satisfying a bowl of daal and a glass of red wine. One Telluride resident makes a point of stopping because he can’t get enough of the spice in many Guru dishes.
For many downtown Montrose worker bees, Guru’s is all about its daily lunch buffet ($9.89). There are always plenty of dishes to try, so pace yourself. The vegetable pakoda, made of spinach, cabbage and onion deep fried with chickpea flour – crispy on the outside, creaminess in the inside – is a perfect way to start. Pair a few of those with a cup of daal to warm up the palate.
Regulars know that the buffet features a few dishes that are mainstays of Indian cooking. One of them is brightly colored chicken tikka masala, (the most popular restaurant dish in England). Another is saag paneer, curried, creamed spinach with cubes of paneer, which is an Indian cheese. Brightly colored and spiced, the chicken tikka masala is thick and curry-like. Both dishes are addictive and more than reason enough to hit the buffet for seconds.
Large marinated drumsticks of tandoori chicken can usually be found on the lunch buffet, as can can vegetable chau chau – a stir-fried noodle dish with plenty of vegetables and garlic flavor that is more Nepalese than Indian.
Surprise dishes are not uncommon at the buffet as well. On a recent weekday, a meatball dish was especially popular among the lunch crowd. There’s always basmati rice to soak up sauces, and do not hesitate to pounce on fresh naan when it comes out of the kitchen. Its shelf life on the buffet is limited.
Dinner at Guru’s is a time to choose your own adventure and there’s plenty to choose from. If you like it hot, there are several spicy vindaloos, including a rich lamb vindaloo ($12.99). Another spicy choice, not as saucy, is one of Guru’s chili dishes. Made with your choice of vegetables ($9.99), chicken ($11.99), lamb ($12.99) or shrimp ($14.99), chili is augmented with with onion, green pepper and lots of spices.
If you crave rice, Guru’s biryanis are made with aromatic basmati rice cooked with a choice of meat or vegetables ($10.99-$15.99). If it’s cold outside, warm up with a bowl of chicken thukpa ($11.99), a generous serving of Tibetan style noodles in a flavorful broth.
Guru’s menu is extensive and it would take many, many visits to try everything. The only question is, when will you be in downtown Montrose next?
VEGETARIAN? As you might imagine, most if not all dishes on Guru’s menu can be made with vegetables. There’s also a large list of vegetarian entrees as well. It’s a perfect place for vegetarians and nonvegetarians to break naan together.
NAAN: Guru’s offers several different styles of naan. Some prefer a simple a bite of regular, puffy naan. Others want more flavor. Try the garlic naan ($2.99) or even the special naan ($3.99), which is stuffed with ground lamb, chicken and onions.
Lunch buffet available Monday-Saturday, 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m.; dinner served seven nights a week, 5-9 p.m.