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Copper Chimney

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18090 Collins Ave / Sunny Isles / 305.974.0075

Vegetarian-friendly: Yes
Vegan-friendly: No

Review by David Rolland of pablochiste.com

I'm a sucker for the all you can eat Indian buffet, but sometimes I get myself in trouble challenging the elasticity of my stomach. Copper Chimney an Indian restaurant in Sunny Isles provides an interesting alternative. They have a buffet on Sundays for $16.95, but on weekdays from 12-4pm they offer a lunch special  for $12.95.  The only problem for vegans is that the six vegetarian options all have dairy as ghee (clarified butter) is a common ingredient in Indian cooking. Fortunately the server spoke to the cooks and they are able to offer several vegan options. The dinner menu was filled with even more vegetarian entrees (many of which were priced at $12), but again if you are vegan you must specially request your food not to have dairy.

Copper Chimney's atmosphere is very fine, but unfortunately when I went there a bachelorette party took up the dining area. So we were seated outside where the servers were good natured, very attentive and glad to accommodate my picky vegan requests.

When the food came I was pleasantly surprised by the size of the serving. The portions are quite generous, but fixed so you don't eat so much that you need a wheelbarrow to take you out. I ordered the mushroom masala which was cooked in a savory tomato sauce. The lunch special also included an equal sized "side" of vegetable masala which had a tasty blend of carrots, peas, cauliflower, and broccoli. There was a fresh spinach salad with a pomegranate dressing, a pakora (which is a fried dumpling), a piece of nan (flat bread), and spiced Basmati rice. All the ingredients were quite fresh. I asked for medium spice which was actually quite mild, so fans of heat should not be afraid to request their food as spicy. But even without that extra kick the food was flavorful enough  that I am excited to make a return lunch visit and hopefully there won't be a bachelorette party, so I can enjoy the restaurant's ornate decorations.