10044 Cross Creek Blvd., Tampa, FL 33647
Cost range: 10.01-20.00
Payment options: Credit cards accepted
Alcohol: Beer and wine only
Sunita Chheda's small, strip-mall restaurant, opened in 2008 across from the New Tampa Library, is a find. In the kitchen, Chheda is bold, unafraid of serious spiciness. But her heat is not a straightforward hurts-so-good kind of thing. It's nuanced, the flavorful food relying on a cumulative effect to get you sniffling. She presides over an ambitious menu, her skills equally devoted to the tandoor, veggies and pulses, and a broad lineup of savory lamb and goat dishes. Choose your breads (naan, roti, paratha and ballooning poori are all tempting) and then something scoopable, perhaps a tandoor-smoky roasted eggplant baingan bharta or creamy whole lentil daal makhni.
Hours: 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Friday, noon to 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday; 5 to 10 p.m. Tuesday to Thursday and Sunday, until 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday.