Daana Indian Food in Canberra

Daana Indian Food in Canberra

Daana Indian Food in Canberra

My quest for a quick Indian food fix in Canberra has ended with the discovery of Daana. This eatery located at 83 Theodore Street, Curtin (previously at Canberra’s Westside Acton Park) is currently right on top of my favourite Indian food picks. Lately I have been haunting this food joint at every given opportunity. It’s about time I begin to ruminate on the reasons that makes this humble establishment such a hit.

To begin with, the food dished out at Daana is simple street food that you will find on any street through the length and breath of India. Every single Indian is bought up with an acquired taste of dosas. idli, vadas, kati rolls, pakoras, samosas and pao bhajis.

Verily, this is the type of food that a migrant Indian yearns for in an adopted land. For fare such as these brings back reminisces of a life left behind. It used to be daily bread for most, you see.

Such fodder rekindles memories of family, friends and acquaintances. Every bite brings back forgotten sounds and songs. Every single Indian is a connoisseur when it comes to judging this type of larder and if it does not taste right, they will never ever order it again. Most would never go back to the restaurant. And it is here, that Daana excels.

Daana Indian Food Canberra

The food is simply amazing. The masala dosas have the right spice and salt, the steaming vadas are crisp, the pakoras have the right proportions of flour and onion, and the kati rolls are soft and bulky.

During one of my visits, I ordered a Dum Biryani and found myself transported to the Old City of Hyderabad. On another occasion, I tried the malai kulfi and felt I was sitting in the streets of Old Delhi. To be honest I am addicted to Daana. But that does not mean I like their Rasgullas, it just did not work for me but I won’t hold it against them. To get 99.9% of the food they serve right, is quite an achievement.

Another attractive feature of Daana, are its prices. The food is priced right and the portions are generous. Most dishes are priced between the range of $8-$12 a plate and as a foodie, I can tell you that the portion served is more than sufficient for one person.

There are times I packed food back because I couldn’t finish it. For instance when ordering a masala dosa, I was expecting one dosa. I got two instead. I asked for extra chutney and expected to be charged and was pleasantly surprised to be told that extra chutney or sambar is free!

Last week I was craving for some onion fritters (pakoras). I assumed that it was on the menu but it wasn’t. They actually went out of the way and cheerfully made me a plate even though they had a full house. If that’s not customer service, I don’t know what else is. In short, I like Daana because of the following reasons:

  • The food is made fresh and you can therefore get the level of spiciness and salt adjusted to your preference
  • It’s value for money. The average price of a well proportioned dish is about $10
  • The fare is simply delicious and well presented.
  • Offers take away options
  • Fantastic customer service. The husband-wife duo are always available and if they are not cooking, you would find them by your side trying to learn a bit about your taste buds

Indian food is not always about curries, tandoors and rice dishes. There is a lot more to Indian cuisine and the owners of Daana, Sunita and Sanjay Kumar have embarked on an journey to introduce Canberra to Indian food that’s different.

What you will taste in Daana is the food that resonates with the everyday Indian on the streets of India. And if by chance you happen to see an Indian grinning from ear-to-ear, there are very good chances that he/she would have just dined at Daana. I will wager you on it.

Now that you have read about my favourite spot, click here to find out what Rosemarie’s favourite dinning spot in Canberra is!

Daana has moved to a full service restaurant and is now located at 83 Theodore Street, Curtin.

Joseph Ellis