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Kabab's Indian Restaurant

By: David Knickerbocker

Date Posted: 2003-06-07

Kabab's, a new and exciting Indian restaurant, held its grand opening on June 1. A friend of mine informed me of the new restaurant, so I decided to check it out with a few friends and family members. What I found was a restaurant that became one of my favorites on island soon after my first bite. The food was sensational, the setting was relaxed, and the staff was very courteous and helpful. Without a doubt, Kabab's is positively on par with the best Indian restaurants that can be found on Okinawa or even Japan.

The main focus of the staff at Kabab's is trying to create something new and exciting from the ideas and techniques used in the past. "Okinawa is a very internationalized place." says Zakir Md. Khan, the creator of Kabab's. "With my restaurant, I'm trying to take old ideas and make something completely new and original." Khan has the special ability to do so party due to his background in Italian, French, and Indian cuisine. By blending the three together, he has made quite a few unique dishes that can not be found elsewhere aside from Kabab's.

The menu has a variety of traditional Indian dishes as well as a few Kabab's originals. I decided to be daring and go for the originals. Each of them was delicious! The spices were just right, the meats were cooked to perfection, and the nan was served hot and fresh! The nan was served right out of the oven. "You've got to eat it while it's still hot to get the most out of the taste," says Khan.

One of Kabab's strong points is its customer service. They have a very friendly staff that can speak English and Japanese, and they also have two sets of menus--one in English and the other in Japanese. You will have no trouble figuring out what you are ordering, and that is always a plus when ordering foreign food. Also, all meals are customizable to the customers' demands. If you like spicy food, tell the staff. On the other hand, if your palate is incapable of dealing with too many spices, let the staff know. They'll be more than happy to assist you.

When dining at Kabab's, all customers have the option of ordering a combo meal or several separate dishes. There are three lunch sets available during lunch hours. The first set costs 700 and includes a choice of either chicken, beef, fish, or vegetable curry as well as salad, nan or rice, and tea or coffee. The second set costs 800 and includes everything the first set has as well as tandoori chicken. The third set costs 900 and comes with everything the first two sets have as well as shish kebab.

Three sets are available during dinner hours as well. The first set costs 1600 and includes samosa, salad, the soup of the day, one chicken, beef, fish, or vegetable selection, nan or rice, a lassie, ice cream, and tea or coffee. The second set costs 1800 and includes the same as the first set, but instead of samosa you get tandoori chicken. The third set--"Kabab's Special"--costs 2000 and includes the same as the second set plus shish kebab.

Kebab's has a very pleasant atmosphere with room to fit about 35 people. This is a cozy restaurant with a touch of class. "In the future, I want to have a European setting with Indian food," says Khan. "This is not a very traditional Indian way to do things, but I am trying to do something new." As it was when I visited, the restaurant was very clean and cool.

During my visit, I came with a party of 7 people, and all of us left completely satisfied. The food was spicy, but not overly so. It leaves your mouth tingling from the different herbs and spices mixed in. Also, the proportions of food served are just right. It's not too much, but it's enough to satisfy any appetite. Overall, most of the customers seemed pleased. "I've eaten Indian food at four different continents, and this was one of the best," says Jim, a customer who arrived to check out Kabab's on its grand opening. "I especially enjoyed the nan!"

Without a doubt, Kabab's was a very satisfactory experience. The restaurant is located right outside of Camp Kinser Gate 4. If you are driving south on highway 58, turn right at the intersection between the Esso gas station and the Ebano restaurant. Head towards the Camp Kinser gate, and you'll see a sign for Kabab's on your right hand side near the gate. Follow the signs and you'll eventually get to a golf driving range. Kabab's is on the first floor. Kabab's is open for lunch from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., for dinner from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., and the last order is at 9 p.m. Take out is available. For more information, call (098) 874-7714.

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