Serving up sauteed rice dishes, curries packed with flavor, and marinated chicken that’s been deliciously chargrilled, is basically a family tradition for Syed Mutaher.
He grew up with his father owning an Indian restaurant in England, where the cuisine is very popular. When Syed moved to the states, his father encouraged him to open up a restaurant of his own. So in 2011, he opened Royal Bangel in Warren.
At the time, however, many people were unfamiliar with Indian food in the area. Syed recounts having to show people how to mix the various curries with the rice on their plate and to pick it up with the naan bread.
Despite people’s unfamiliarity, the restaurant did well enough to where he wanted to open a second location. He decided he needed a bit of luck so he named his second restaurant, a take-out only location on Vernier and Mack in Grosse Pointe Woods, after his mom, Noorjahan.
“This name meaning is light of the world,” explains Sayed.
The name really did bring him some good luck, because shortly after opening his first Noorjahan, they were so busy they needed to open a second. Customers begged him to open a place with dine-in service so he found a location on Mack and Cadieux in Grosse Pointe Park and opened his third location there along with the manager of the original Noorjahan location.
When the pandemic hit, they decided to stay open and serve the community with carry-out only. This gained them a very loyal following and they were able to open two additional locations, one in Livonia and another in Bloomfield hills.
They all serve up the same great food, using family recipes and a traditional tandoori oven, a rarity in most Michigan kitchens. The traditional clay oven looks almost like a pit with clay sides and an open fire at the bottom. Skewers of meat, like tandoori chicken or chicken tikka, get grilled to perfection in its hot temperatures. Fresh naan bread is also made in the oven, by sticking the dough to the clay side, causing it to bubble and cook quickly, similar to pita.
With over 100 items on their menu, there is a lot to choose from. For newcomers, they recommend chicken tikka masala, a creamy sweet dish made with tomatoes, coconuts, onions, and mild spices. Other great dishes to try if you’re not a fan of spice include butter chicken and chicken Korma. If you like things a bit spicier and still want a curry, try chicken jalfrezi, the chicken is cooked with peppers and onions, and the sauce is spicy and savory with garlic and ginger. All dishes can be cooked to the spice level of your choosing. Most dishes come with a side of rice to eat them with.
For more information watch the full video above. Here are there four locations:
Grosse Pointe Park
16624 Mack Ave, Grosse Pointe Park, MI 48230
Grosse Pointe Woods
20641 Mack Ave, Grosse Pointe Woods, MI 48236
17933 Haggerty Rd, Livonia, MI 48152
42787 Woodward Ave, Bloomfield Twp., MI 48304