The Shortlist

Calicut Paragon, Karama
Highly Commended for Best Budget
© ITP Images

The fabled ‘curry corridor’ running through Satwa, Karama and Bur Dubai remains the best place to pick up excellent budget food in the city. Although authenticity is prevalent among the myriad of Indian restaurants, consistency is not a universal attribute, which is why Keralan stalwart Calicut Paragon stands out. There is much for a vegetarian to appreciate on the menu with grilled paneer offering a peppery kick and cheese stuffed mushrooms suggesting there is ingenuity in the chef’s repertoire. However it is the seafood that really stands out. Try an entire pomfret (often caught that day) smothered in a spicy rub as an excellent introduction to Keralan food. Perhaps more accessible, however, is the fruity mango curry. Mop it up with a buttery naan and still have change from Dhs25. The decor is simple but clean and the service friendly. So if you want to try a broader range of traditional Indian flavours than is usually offered up in Dubai, go to the Calicut.
Open daily 7am-1.30am. Opposite Lulu Center, Karama. (04 335 8700). Other branch: Near NMC Hospital (04 298 8858).

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