Seattle: Cedars Restaurant on Brooklyn

After the Boeing Tour which took a good part of the morning, we headed south towards Seattle and decided to have lunch in Cedar’s. Cedar was one of the most recommended from Chowtimes readers on my list. I guess I won’t go wrong going for lunch here since also that the family loves spicy Indian cooking.


Cedars or more accurately Cedars on Brooklyn Restaurant is located, well, on Brooklyn Ave (St? Dr?) in the University District. From outside one would never have thought that this is an East Indian restaurant. Moreover, the name Cedar has no absolutely no connection to anything Indian, at least not to my knowledge.

We were a bit wary about this place as we went in. We wanted only authentic Indian food and seeing also the customers there who are mostly whites, I thought their food might have been watered down to suit the local palate. I was sooo wrong.


The lunchroom was packed but we got seated quite promptly. Maybe it’s just me … but the customers do seems like they are either students or university professors. After all we are in Seattle’s University District.


Mango Relish. I guess it must be something like a chutney that one uses as a condiment. What do you eat this with anyway?

As far the Iguana XXX Habanero sauce I am quite sure this is not Indian. Ooooh, this I like. There is a real kick to this and loves the fact that the burn comes on slowly. Try a dip and for the first few seconds, it was just like nothing and then the burn will set in to such an intense level I had to reach for the glass of water. Nice, wickedly nice! I put some on the dishes that came afterwards.


Oh wow … the naan was heavenly. Freshly made and served out of the oven, it was simply the best we had ever tried. The boys tore into them and finished them up in no time. They were served warm and fluffy. We like that they buttered it on one side which gives it a good balance of moistness with the crispiness of the charred edges.

The dip was a bit out of the ordinary for us. We normally were not served dips with naan in other Indian restaurants. Here, we were given this dip that taste like fruit jam. The dip was good but really, one should just eat naan with the curry gravy of the main dish.


We ordered the Butter Massala with Prawns. This is what we dip our naan into. The gravy is absolutely marvelous. It is rich and creamy and so full of spices. We asked for this to be made spicy hot and then we pump in the Iguana XXX Habanero sauce — we all had sweat on our forehead and Suanne was sniffing all throughout the meal. It was that good.


The butter massala goes equally as well with the rice too. They do serve a huge plate of rice.


I can’t recall exactly what this is now. Seems like the Tandoori Chicken with rice. This is alright, no big deal compared to the other dishes.


We also ordered the Lamb Briyani. Oh this one is great. There were lots of chunky pieces of lamb meat — I had never come across cuts as big as these. I love this. It has just the right level of spiciness even though we asked for the hot version.

Most Lamb Briyani would have lots of rice with a few pieces of meat which almost disintegrated into the rice. Here, they are still perfect chunks and with so much of it that it seems like the rice is like garnishing on the dish — well, not exactly but you know what I mean.


Forty bucks, excluding tips. It was very good. We told ourselves that if we were to come to Seattle again, we will definitely come back to Cedar again. I am actually pleasantly surprised that this is that good; never expecting that for a city with so little ethnic population like Seattle, there is this little gem of a place. Double thumbs up … no make that three!

Thanks for the recommendation!

Cedars Restaurant on Brooklyn on Urbanspoon

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  1. Erick

    Thanks for this review. Now, we have another Indian restaurant to try besides Naan N’ Curry. Wish our kids like Indian food like yours.

  2. LotusRapper

    Hehe, I’ve sat at the very exact table you guys sat at twice 🙂

    Cedars is solid indeed.

    Seattle’s ethnic mix is no less than that of Metro Vancouver, it’s just that the population is more spread out geographically and the “faces” of ethnic communities may not be as obvious or densely located as the neighbourhoods here.

    There’s another small Indian restaurant (forget name) on University Way around 52 Ave(?) near the old school building that serves very decent lunch buffets for around $7. I ate there at least ten times 😀

  3. Anon

    “…so little ethnic population…”

    I’m suprised how you used the word “ethnic” in a sentence – don’t you mean “so little ethnic minority population”?

  4. Jennifer

    Now I’m craving some Indian food. Too good! I’m glad you loved Cedar’s though. It’s one of my favorite restaurants.

    I don’t know if I mentioned this or if you want to even know but the tips that you give don’t go to the waiters/waitresses/servers. Instead, they just get a higher wage. I’m not quite too sure where the tips go though.

    The chicken dish is Tandoori Chicken Tikka. If you guys ever go back to Cedar’s again, make sure you try the Mango Lassi.

  5. Rukya, London

    The condiment is called ‘achar’, which is basically Indian-style pickles. Unlike achars, chutneys are usually something you can eat alone.

  6. RobynT

    yum… i think i had that relish served with papadum or some other bread-like thing. it was more fragile than naan. not sure if that is the same thing, but it looks kind of similar.

  7. Jessica

    The naan looks so yummy!

    The woman in green in the first pic looks mad like she’s thinking “why are you pointing that camera at me!” 🙂

  8. LotusRapper

    Or she’s thinking: “Hmm that must be Ben of the famous Chowtimes …. I need to get his autograph !”

  9. LotusRapper

    There’s a new South Indian restaurant in town (West Broadway btwn Oak and Laurel) called Saravana Bhavan. Strictly vegetarian, and South Indian instead of the northern (Moghul) Indian cuisine popular in Vancouver.

    Good food, very reasonable prices. Friendly staff, nice decor and room. Highly recommended 🙂

  10. Dana

    What shitty tippers you are, not even 20%- lame!

    1. Ben

      Hi Dana:
      There is nothing on this post on how much we tipped here. So, I am not exactly sure what your problem is. LOL! Care to explain what made you think we are “shitty tippers”?

      1. jenny m

        Wow. Dana tsk. I hate people that feel entitled.

  11. Alex

    Hey Ben,

    I think Dana is one of the disgruntled waiters at Cedar’s who always gets shortchanged on tips due to his/her “shitty” attitude. 😉

  12. jenny m

    Cedars buttered chicken is delicious and the owner is amazing. Love this place and they deliver for lazy people like me.

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