Wednesday, November 7, 2007 | Cincinnati.Com » CiN Weekly » Dining Guide » Apna India

Apna India

341 Ludlow Ave., Clifton 513-861-6800 8045 Connector Drive, Florence 859-372-0777

Like other Indian restaurants along Ludlow Avenue, Apna offers an array of spicy and delicious Northern Indian entrées (including many vegetarian dishes), warm and soft flatbreads, desserts, and small appetizing dishes to share.

Unusually, and happily, Apna offers a dinner buffet ($10.99 from 5 to 9 p.m.) in addition to a lunch buffet ($7.99 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.).

How's the food? Can Apna play with the big boys on the block?

Although my two tablemates and I each decided on a different favorite Indian joint on Ludlow Street, we all agreed that our buffet lunch at Apna was delicious, and that the restaurant is a worthy competitor.

The restaurant is on the small side, and cleanly set up and decorated. Finding street parking may take some meandering; Ludlow Avenue is popular and crowded, especially on weekends.

Common among 20-somethings, I have many Cincinnati friends who have now moved to larger urban areas (New York, Boston, San Francisco). When they come back to visit, they typically demand their first dinner be at any Indian restaurant on Ludlow Avenue. While eating, they're not satisfied to just eat their own dinner; they insist on all of us sharing everything on the table, exclaiming all the while how much they missed this food. It's odd, even bizarre - doesn't New York have to have good Indian restaurants? - but such a confluence of high-quality Northern Indian food is more rare than you might expect.

HOURS: Open 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.


ENTREE: Creamy lamb saag served over rice ($7.99; buffet)

SIDE: Garlic naan is a delicious way to wipe your plate clean ($7.99; buffet)

DESSERT: Kheer, a tasty Indian rice pudding ($7.99; buffet)

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Maya Abi Aad and Elie Hantouche dine out at Apna in Clifton.
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Maya Abi Aad and Elie Hantouche dine out at Apna in Clifton.

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