It seems a bit odd heading out to find street food at a bricks and mortar restaurant. Odd, but not unusual - it's not hard to find 'street food' of sorts on the menu these days.
Binny's Kathitto on Braddon's main dining strip of Lonsdale Street is all about authentic Indian street food, and Binny's did in fact start as a street food van at The Hamlet. In 2016, Binny moved the operation across the road, opening the permanent Binny's Kathitto.
It's quite a narrow joint, tucked in at the end of the crowded strip of Hopscotch, Tipsy Bull and Sanya Bar, but there is still plenty of room. Most seating is outdoors on a large decked area, with a few tables inside near a small bar area, with the kitchen hidden at the back.
The menu is still all about Indian street food and one thing's for sure - you're not going to find what you would at your average Indian restaurant here. There are kathittos - kind of like an Indian version of a gyros - curries, smaller bites, crepes, and street food specialty dishes. The menu is quite long and a bit overwhelming, although a few photos scattered throughout the menu help navigation somewhat. If there are at least four of you, the banquet options that the decision away. And there's a big focus on gluten free dishes here, with lots of options also for vegetarians.
There's a bit of a wait for food after ordering, and then it all comes out at once. The first thing we dig into, the chicken tikka kathitto ($12.90) is more-ish and our standout morsel for the evening. Wrapped in paper, the thin yet fluffy roti wraps up cubes of chicken which are spiced and grilled beautifully. We share the one, which comes cut in half.
The lamb curry ($22.90) is quite rich, in a spicy, tomato-based sauce, and served simply. The paneer dosa ($16.90) on the other hand is quite spectacular on the table - a long cylindrical crepe sits almost sculpturesque on a platter alongside a dish of lentil stew to dip, plus a coconut and tomato chutney. The crepe is delightfully crispy and good for getting your hands involved at cracking off chunks and dipping, and it's the lentil stew and the accompanying chutneys where the real flavour is.
The dishes may seem small, but they're deceptively filling - possibly err on the side of ordering less than you think.
The drinks list is basic, but very reasonably priced. Wines are all available by the glass, plus it's BYO if you prefer your own. For something a bit different, we try the the 'jaljeera', which is labelled as a 'refreshing Indian lemonade drink'. Served in a jar with a handle and iced cold, it's safe to say it's an aquired taste - very spicy and full of cumin.
Binny's is quite a fun joint - even with a permanent venue now, things are kept very casual. It's a lively spot, with a menu that's a nice change from the norm.
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