Eclectic Asian cuisine served at Indu’s in Incline Village
Special to Lake Tahoe Action
If you go
What: Indu’s Asian Noodles
Where: 868 Tahoe Blvd., Suite 18-19. Incline Village
Hours: 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday-Monday. Closed Tuesdays.
Service: Kind and quick
Atmosphere: Family atmosphere, laid back
Drinks and wine: Beer, wine and sake; lassis and homemade Thai teas.
The people and visitors of Lake Tahoe share many things in common — a love for adventure, mellow lifestyles and craft beers names a few. Close to the top of that list is a near constant craving for Vietnamese pho. Perhaps it is the phenomenon of wanting what you can’t (easily) obtain that makes this desire so huge.
Whatever it is, we have all made the drive down the hill for the express interest of satisfying the ever-present urge for broth, noodles and all that floats between. But maybe we don’t have to go so far.
Incline Village, at the northeast corner of the lake, is a hot spot for eclectic cuisine. It has everything from the standard Mexican and Italian fare to tapas, several types of Asian and a brand new brewery. So it’s no surprise that a certain Indu’s Asian Noodles lists pho on its eclectic menu.
The Christmas Tree Plaza in Incline Village has a little bit of everything appetizing. In Suites 18 and 19, Indu’s gold interior is decorated with paintings of Hindu gods and goddesses amongst granite boulders and pine trees. There are maroon table clothes, scenes of Tahoe and pictures of monkeys and other small animals.
The bar curves its way around the entry room’s wall and is a perfect place to sit in quiet solitude or maybe whisper with one other. The dining room, fitted with large tables and booths, feels immediately familial — a place where large groups and small children can get boisterous with little fear of reprimand.
Indu’s is family run, and they want families to feel comfortable being themselves. Upon entering, Pasan Rupasinghe will most likely greet and seat you. Pasan is the manager and also co-owns Indu’s with his cousin. They are both Sri Lankan, and Indu’s features cuisine form the country alongside Vietnamese and Chinese dishes.
On the menu there is a bit of everything, from kung pao chicken to traditional pho and Sri Lankan vegetable curries. Several times I’ve picked up pho to go. The menu doesn’t say it, but if you’re looking for veggies or tofu, all you have to do is ask. The portions heap far beyond their price tags and straight into the next day’s lunch.
Every broth (chicken, beef and vegetable) is cooked authentically, with the flavors layered subtly over one another in a bowl of delicious, nutritious goodness. The bright and colorful veggies bob happily in their steamy broth, and the usual accoutrements are fresh and crispy.
This time, I sat with a friend and ordered the steamed pork dumplings. They were thick-skinned, well-cooked and served with a perfectly simple sauce.
For entrees, Pasan suggested the lemongrass flame-broiled beef with vermicelli noodles from the traditional Vietnamese menu. Despite my massive pho craving, I let Pasan choose a new soup for me. There are lots, including nine types of pho, hot and sour and Sri Lankan.
He brought the Chow Fun house noodle soup packed with sliced pork, chicken, shrimp, crab, carrots, bamboo and mushrooms. It normally comes with ho fun noodles; flat, thick egg noodles; which he substituted for rice noodles.
The enormous dishes were fragrant, yet delicately and consciously flavored. The beef’s special pour over sauce was subtle, and, while the beef was plentiful, the light spice let the flame broil dominate the overall flavor.
The soup’s broth was complex, with the ingredients playing harmoniously together. The meats were cooked simply and cleanly, making the whole dish healthy and fresh. Of all the elements, the pork was most flavorful and led me to believe the Chinese dishes would not disappoint either.
Indu’s eclectic menu promises there is something for everyone. You may go in to satisfy your pho craving, but with so many options who knows what could happen? There are meats, seafood and plenty of vegetarian and vegan options among the curries, tofu, stir-fry and soups.
If you’re ever in doubt, ask Pasan.
Ashley A. Cooper is a freelance writer residing in Truckee. She can be reached at email@example.com.
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