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Plainfield’s Mayur Restaurant

Name: Plainfield’s Mayur Restaurant
Location: 852 SW 21st Avenue Portland, OR 97205
Contact information: 503.223.2995
Web address: www.plainfields.com
Hours: Monday-Sunday 5:30 p.m.-10 p.m.
Cost: Appetizers $7-$10, Entrees $16-$19
Reservation recommended: On weekends
Good for: Indian with class and a very, very extensive wine list
Insider tip: A generous list of wines are half off on Monday and Thursday evenings.

Review: Wine aficionados, rejoice – Plainfield’s Mayur has proved that Indian restaurants can serve alcohol beverages besides Boone’s Farm and Taj Mahal beer.

In fact, Painfield’s Mayur is known more for their extensive wine list than their food. A detailed menu lists red, white, fortified, sparkling, Italian and dessert wines. Prices range from the shockingly low ($15.50) to the outrageously spendy ($3000). A specialty list of Madeira offerings is the most extensive in town.

A recent Thursday night visit paired an overwhelmingly sweet riesling ($11 – half off) with vegetarian samosas ($5.96). The samosas were disappointingly bland and closely resembled the ones you pull out of the frozen food aisle at the grocery store.

For an entree I ordered royal biryani ($17.95). This dish contains a variety of mushrooms mixed with decedent basmati rice. It also includes paneer, nuts, coconut and coriander. Silver leaf tops the dish, although it looks more like tin foil and does not add anything to the presentation.

The meal itself is enormous and could easily feed two people (for those interested – it also reheats very well). The elaborate preparation ensures that a number of tastes will be competing for attention, but it does not overwhelm the dish. It is by far the single best Indian dish I’ve had in Portland.

My companion ordered the vegetable bhaji ($16.95) – mixed vegetables with mushrooms and a heavy sauce that includes onion, garlic, yogurt and two types of masala. The dish seemed heavily reliant on cauliflower and was not as stunning as the biryani. However, it was an entirely decent meal.

Service was slightly lacking, especially as the evening wore on. With only one server – who also doubled as a host – I wasn’t surprised by this. However, I would have expected more people to be on staff, especially for a Thursday evening.