Friday, May 1, 2009

Zaika S$9.90 Weekday Lunch Buffet

UPDATE: Shortly after I blogged this, the restaurant changed the buffet to a set lunch at the same price. It offers the same items, just one serving only, but I find that is really more than enough. We were so full from trying all the items, we couldn't order much more anyway.

Bombay Chat that I thought was pappadum
A friend of mine kept raving about this fantastic value-for-money buffet lunch deal and implored me to try it myself. It's a simple little North Indian restaurant along Race Course Road called Zaika.

Weekday lunch buffet at Zaika
See? For S$9.90+ per person, you get unlimited servings of 10 dishes including tandoori chicken, fish curry, butter chicken, and naans. They even throw in dessert and free-flow drinks!

Of course, at this price, we did not expect fine-dining restaurant quality food. But what was served was more than decent. (Note that this offer is only available weekdays).

Medley of pakoras and samosas
How it works is they bring out to you appropriately portioned servings of ALL the dishes. If you like something, you can request more of it. We started with the Bombay chat (first photo) which I mistook for a pappadum appetiser. That comes with a sweetish and sourish plum-like dip.

A medley of vegetable pakoras and curry samosas (above) followed. I liked the pakoras which had thinner dough skin and were not as heavy as the samosas. See the mint chutney in the background? That was superb!

Tandoori chicken
Tandoori chicken - one small piece per person is served each time. It was surprisingly tender and moist. But hubby prefers his tandoori really well-baked and drier. Still, we ordered one more portion of this.

Supercreamy and tangy raita
Some extremely creamy, rich and tangy raita. Somehow it helps to cut through grease and satiates you at the same time.

Three types of curry - fish, veg and butter chicken
Three different curries - from left to right: fish curry, mixed vegetable curry (we liked this one best) and butter chicken. All of which are not spicy hot at all, so if you have a low tolerance for chili heat, you will enjoy these. They were very generous with the gravy. However, after a while, the richness of the dishes numbed our tastebuds somewhat and all of them tended to taste alike.

Yellow Dhal
This yellow dhal curry was quite delicious - and we don't even like dhal. We finished this whole bucket.

Fluffy chewy naans, fresh from the oven
Lovely fluffy naans, fresh and hot out of the oven. Perfect for mopping up the curries with. I think you can request rice instead if you prefer that.

Dessert of Payasam - a rice and milk pudding with nuts and dried fruit
Dessert is payasam - the milky rice pudding with nuts and dried fruit. I forgot to ask if they vary the dessert daily.

Free-flow of orange squash
You are going to need a lot of water after all the rich food. They provide free-flow orange squash, which is rather quaint but refreshing. I haven't drunk this since I was a child, maybe during Chinese New Year.

Table setting at Zaika
Decor is fairly simple and service is prompt and adequate. The waiters came regularly to check if we wanted more of any dishes. The full course is actually quite filling already, and we could barely accommodate more.

Zaika is at 38 Race Course Road in Singapore
You can't miss the brightly orange facade. You can either dine indoors or at two tables al fresco. Interestingly, the weekday lunch deal is not reflected in their website (link below).

38 Race Course Road
Singapore 218555
Tel: 6341-7621
Open daily
Lunch: 11.30am - 2.30pm
dinner: 6.30pm - 11.00pm


  1. the tandoori chicken shot looks really enticing :D drooling already la!

  2. I love the little bucket for the dhal curry! $9.90 is indeed a wonderful bargain for the spread.

  3. Ohhhh! You've made me so so so hungry for good Indian food and I don't have any chicken defrosted tonight. I am going to HAVE to make some tandoori chicken (sadly, without a tandoor) this week!

    Great shots and write-up.

  4. It looks so good! Thanks for posting this. I am going to try it this week :)

  5. tandoori chicken is a yummy main dish...your sauces look so good!

  6. i love this restaurant! really good food and value-for-money. though it's not really a buffet...when i went they said we could only order each dish one more time after they'd served it the first time.

  7. Wow looks like they changed their policy! Sounds like they've been hit by people who can really eat a lot, in order to enforce something like that.

  8. My daughter is a picky eater and she loved the food... especially the tandoori chicken. The place is clean and the food is excellent value for money. Would definitely recommend this place to anyone.

  9. Anon: thanks for the feedback! Glad your daughter enjoyed the food here. It is certainly value for money.


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