August 13, 2010

G'Raj Mahal

- Location:  Downtown - 91 Red River - Rainey Street District
- Hours: Tuesday - Thursday & Sunday: 5 PM - 12 AM
              Friday & Saturday: 5 PM - 3 AM
- Number: 512-480-2255
- Facebook: G'raj Mahal Cafe 
- Cuisine: Indian

Anthony and Sidney Roberts met at Sidney’s favorite Indian restaurant in Minnesota where she was temporarily located.  She started flirting with Anthony, who she thought was a new waiter but as it turned out he was the owner.  After dating, the pair started talking about mutual projects and formulated the G’Raj Mahal concept from their mutual work experience along with her imagination and his good work ethics.  Owning and operating a food trailer in Austin, Texas may seem like an unlikely journey for Sidney, who has an International Studies degree in Biochemistries for Medicine.  But the once a foodie, always a foodie theory applies to her.  She says, “I’ve always cooked.  I knew I wanted to be a chef ever since I was a kid – it’s addictive work.” 

Her personal favorite item on the menu is the Goan Fish Curry.  Anthony is from Goa, India so the couple brought in some Goan items to honor his history and genetics.  The vegetable korma or possibly the chicken saag made with fresh spinach (never frozen) are two of the crowd favorites under the palace-like draped outdoor seating area that is also home to the Austin Bike Zoo.   

When asked about her favorite part of the business, Sidney offers: “The most intriguing thing is as a chef, you don’t get to meet a lot of the customers.  But in this case, we are face to face with our people and a lot of them want to have a conversation with you. We’ve become good friends with many of the customers there and it’s also become a good hang out for the chefs when they get off their shifts.  It’s a good thing when we know chefs are looking forward to eating our food.”