Choolaah Indian BBQ, a 3,955-square-foot fast-casual Indian restaurant, officially opens this week in Fairfax’s Mosaic District. Choolaah will elevate fresh casual dining in the nation’s capital with a menu featuring customizable made-to-order dishes rooted in authentic and traditional Indian flavors and served in a modern way.
The name “Choolaah” is a play on the term “sanjha chulha.” In ancient Northern India, people would meet and gather around a neighborhood sanjha chulha, a community oven, to bake fresh bread and exchange stories—a tradition that strengthened personal bonds. Choolaah is a fresh take on this timeless experience of sitting with others, sharing stories, and savoring good company and good food every day.
While Choolaah has its roots in Ohio, the idea has always been to expand to new locations around the globe. Choolaah’s newest location, situated in the heart of Mosaic District, is the perfect fit for this people-centric restaurant.
“We were immediately drawn to the diversity and strong sense of community found at Mosaic District. We look forward to becoming a gathering place for all and to being actively involved in this great community,” said co-CEO Raji Sankar.
“Our mission is to delight every guest every time, creating raving fans,” added Sankar. “I hope that every guest walks away with that feeling that they were treated fairly and they were not just a transaction. That’s the kind of hospitality that we pride ourselves on, and that is the essence of who we are and why we do what we do.”
Authenticity, customization and modern influences form the cornerstone of the Choolaah experience, with an emphasis on convenience, affordability, transparency and freshness. The restaurant prides itself on its all-natural, GMO-free ingredients and scratch kitchen where the food is prepared in front of the customer. Choolaah’s customizable and accessible menu emphasizes traditional Indian flavors, techniques and spices while opening diners’ minds to new possibilities. Using only premium ingredients that are hormone-, antibiotic- and GMO-free, the melt-in-your-mouth BBQ is deeply marinated with the best imported Indian spices, creating a truly unique experience. We cater to all dietary preferences, and vegetarian, vegan and dairy-free, gluten-free and egg-free options are available.
The BBQ bowls (prices ranging from $9.99 to $13.99), are designed to be mixed and matched to create countless menu combinations. Guests may choose from 6 Mains (Chicken, Lamb Meatballs, Salmon, Paneer Cheese, Tofu and Veggies, and Veggie Croquettes), 2 Rices (Basmati Rice or Brown Rice), 2 Breads (White Naan or Wheat Naan) and 5 Masalas (Tikka Masala, Chickpea Masala, Veggie Masala, Yellow Lentil Daal and Black Lentil Daal). Highlights of the menu include Chicken or Veggie Biryani ($9.99) as well as the Choolaah Salad ($9.99), Chicken Tandoori Wrap ($6.99), Cheesy Naan Pizza ($4.49) for kids and Samosa Chaat ($3.99). Sauces and spices are provided on the side for guests to adjust spice levels to their own personal palates. A specially curated beverage menu includes refreshing Mango or Salted Lassi, Mint Ginger Lemonade, Choolaah Chai Tea with fresh ground ginger and cardamom, Herbal Iced Tea, fountain drinks, bottled beer and wine by the glass. Staying true to the Indian culture, we encourage guests to end the meal on a sweet note with some Indian ice cream, Mango or Malai Kulfi ($2.49) or Chocolate Truffle ($0.99).
The restaurant is designed to immerse diners in the culture of India in a fresh and bright modern setting that surpasses the typical casual dining experience. The open design of the kitchen allows guests to see their meal being cooked in custom-built tandoor clay ovens, which cook meats and cheeses at very high temperatures, sealing in the juices and producing a uniquely succulent tandoori taste. Modern influences of dark and light colored woods, exposed drop lighting and raw metal are playfully set off by bold accents of orange. Choolaah seats 121 people via individual tables and high-top communal seating and an additional 36 people on the outdoor patio.
Choolaah’s Grand Opening, an all-day event, will be held on Saturday, January 14, 2017, and will include Bhangra (Indian dance) performances, free henna tattoos, face painting, door prizes and other fun activities. Complimentary chai tea will also be provided throughout the day. All proceeds from the Grand Opening will be donated to INOVA Children’s Hospital in Falls Church, Virginia.
Choolaah Indian BBQ, located at 2911 District Avenue in Fairfax, Virginia, next to the Angelika Film Center, is open daily for lunch and dinner (Sunday to Thursday, 11:00 A.M. to 9:00 P.M.; Friday and Saturday, 11:00 A.M. to 10 P.M.). Catering is also available.
To view the menu, please visit http://www.choolaah.com/our-food. For more information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit http://www.choolaah.com. Stay connected with Choolaah on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.