Asha’s of Galleria Mall Extension on Al Maryah Island is a mall-goers or lunch buncher’s little bit of heaven!  Located on the main floor, Level G, near West Elm and the ever-present Pottery Barn, Asha’s offers a great spot to grab a delicious bite to eat, and people-watch while your feet recover from your power shopping trip around this well-arranged mall.  Parking is best found at Section A.

Of all the malls in Abu Dhabi, this housewife loves Galleria Mall on Al Maryah, and to find a lovely gem for Indian cuisine, instantly elevates the experience. Asha’s is the culinary namesake of Asha Bhosle, India’s world-renowned and Guinness World Record holder singer and artist.  Her restaurant reflects her passion for good taste, good atmosphere, and great food!  On an average weekday, we stopped in for a quick lunch and were quickly seated at a table of our choosing; we opted for the right side of the dining room by the big beautiful windows.  The restaurant is spacious and open yet has a very intimate feel with how the tables are set up. As a result, seating does not feel cramped at all or too cavernous.  I felt like Goldilocks… my table was just right!

The decor and ambiance are modern and fresh yet embody the classic touches of brass, tropical plants, and warm ochre-colored walls.  We were greeted quickly by professional waitstaff with menus, and a quick return for drink orders, a lovely set of pappadam and chutneys, and time to look over the offerings.  The menu is simple and easy to follow, with too many dishes to try in one sitting… which is why this housewife’s brilliant hubby suggested the “Thali” option located at the rear of the menu.  Two options are available, Chicken or Vegetarian, and we opted for both to get a complete sampling of popular Indian Fusion dishes.

The Thali’s are presented most charmingly, with banana leaves, beautiful ceramic bowls, and a hearty serving of their version of butter naan and saffron rice. So you’ll receive a very hardy appetizer choice, three dishes, a dessert, naan, rice.   We were told they sent out the Thaili’s for two ladies, hence the cute mini bowls, and had a laugh together when they realized their mistake.. but no matter… we will just have to go back to see how the men’s Thali’s are arranged!

The food is hot, fragrant, and full of flavor.  Items are not overly spiced and are very fresh.  The Okra dish was a favorite, as was the Butter Chicken Masala.  I think my mother would love the rich, buttery Dal Makhani, and if anybody knows my mom… well, it speaks volumes of the chef’s vision and technique.  We also ordered what is called a “Fresh Lime Soda” for a little bright drink, and it was perfectly paired!