Logan Square is finally getting more South Asian food and I am happy to be here to experience all of its glory.
While I am in love with the Spice Room, which serves more traditional Indian cuisine, Superkhana International (3059 W. Diversey Ave.) blends traditional Indian flavors with other cuisines of the world such as Italian and Mexican. Their calzones, pizzas, and play on elotes (dhokla) are examples of this blending.
As someone who comes from a multiethnic background, I am excited to see another global restaurant run by multicultural chefs whose lived experiences have profoundly impacted their passion for cooking. Chef Yoshi Yamada is Japanese-Italian-American and Zeeshan Shah is Indian-Minnesotan.
If you’re looking for solely traditional Indian food, I don’t recommend Superkhana—go to Spice Room instead—but if you’re looking for unique twists on classic dishes from the Indian subcontinent, then by all means, go to Superkhana and have a glorious time.
While reservations for this new restaurant were difficult to find online, I was able to squeeze a reservation in on a Wednesday night. Superkhana was quite happening for the hump day. The interior is colorful with eclectic art and notable decorations that kind of feel Indian, but not quite. They have a visible kitchen concept, which is spacious with an outdoor patio and mini-booths for the interior. I distinctly remember the side room that had the photograph of the sheep.
Also, local celebrity chef, Jason Hammel of Lula Café (he is also a Chef/partner at Superkhana) was just walking around and helped me find the bathroom, no big deal! I was a little starstruck.
Service was a little slow at first but everyone was super friendly and I understand it’s a new restaurant that is working through the kinks of time. Like many other spots in the neighborhood, it’s a “small-plates” place, but unlike many spots in Logan, it’s still a more affordable small plates place at around $10 to 12 per plate and some of the portions are pretty large and filling.
If you’re a wine connoisseur, they do have a wide assortment of sparkling and regular wine but I was intrigued by the Greens and Tonic cocktail, which had apologue celery root and greens. It was quite herbaceous with a generous serving of mint and had very balanced flavors. This cocktail really was perfect for a summer evening.
Most importantly, let’s get into the food because I know that’s why you’re really reading this. They have more vegetarian options than meat options, which made me happy. Thanks for thinking of us! Overall, the flavors were savory and delightful with some highlights.
We started out with the Chili Cheese Naan, which had salted jalapeños and gruyere cheese. It is perfect food when you’re under “the influence” at 3 a.m. but I was hoping for something a bit more exciting. I anticipated chili oil and paneer sprinkled over naan with some sauce or seasoning but it was essentially a cheese pizza with chili on top. Don’t get me wrong, it tasted excellent and the crust was really solid but it needed something else like a sauce to take it to the next level.
After the Chili Cheese Naan, we had my favorite dish of the night, Dhokla & Corn (a play on elotes), which came with achaar (spicy pickle) aioli, kuri leaf and cilantro. Dhokla has a spongy texture from rice and chickpea batter. It reminds me of polenta, which absorbed the zesty aachar aioli and complemented the soft, buttery corn. All of the flavors melted in my mouth.
Another highlight of the night was the French Fry Manchurian, which was essentially the french fry version of Gobi Manchurian (traditionally an Indo-Chinese cauliflower dish). The fries were crispy and seasoned with sesame, scallions, and a savory aioli accompanied with a sweet, thicker mushroom oyster sauce (I think). All of the sauces blended really well together and I couldn’t get enough of this dish!
Last but not Least…
Finally, our last course was the Bombay Sandwich, which was described vaguely on the menu as a “psychedelic grilled cheese with…many, many things.” I think they keep it vague is because they change their menu seasonally so the vegetables in here will change over time.
The bread was perfectly toasted with a mixture of cheese, robust beets and leafy spinach. Fortunately, the beets were quite prominent in the sandwich, which made me happy because I already felt like I was in a cheese coma from the Chili Cheese Naan.
This fun play on grilled cheese came with a delightful curry ketchup, which seamlessly complemented the assortment of Indian spices in the sandwich. I ate too much to try their dessert but they did sound intriguing so leave some room in your stomach!
To sum it all up, I left Superkhana feeling satisfied and intrigued. I would go back here to try more of the menu, especially since there are so many vegetarian options that rotate seasonally. The intimate atmosphere is appealing for a wide variety of occasions.
Vegan Options Rating: ★★
Vegetarian Options Rating: ★★★★1/2
Pescatarian Options Rating: ★★★★1/2
Food Quality: ★★★★
Cocktail Quality: ★★★★★
Overall Rating: ★★★★
Read our coverage of the new restaurant opening to learn more about the chefs and their desire to open in Logan Square.
Featured photo: Shanti Chu