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Imli

7014 Greenleaf Ave

Whittier, CA 90601

Imli is an Indian spot in Whittier that’s not technically open yet but is doing menu drops via their Instagram. And for this Sunday, they’re doing a special “Desi Super Bowl Combo” that features Desi sliders, sloppy joes, masala peanuts, fried crisps, mango chutney spread, and other dips. The large goes for $55, but if it’s just you and your house plants, they also have a small that costs $35. Vegetarian combos are available as well. Pickup only.

Last Saturday, I took a drive down to Imli, a yet-to-be-opened restaurant in downtown Whittier serving street-style Indian food. Why was I going to a spot that still hasn’t officially turned the lights on? Because despite that, founders Nikhil Merchant and Ashwini Jhaveri have begun cooking - and are doing special menu drops via their Instagram. This past weekend, it was all about Goan curry, with both shrimp and vegan (jackfruit) versions available. I slightly preferred the subtle sweetness of the shrimp, but overall, I was completely blown away by the punch of flavor coming from everything on my plate. The coconut and sweet caramelized rice that came on the side could frankly be its own entree, and the sol kadi (a chilled drink made from coconut milk and kokum) was the perfect cool down between bites. Imli might just be getting started, but I’m already fully onboard the bandwagon.

-BC

Still-to-come Whittier spot Imli is getting things started a bit early before their upcoming grand opening in 2021. They’re selling a prix fixe Indian feast for two ($75), which includes chana chaat, chicken kheema, and more. Order online by 12/28 for 12/31 pick-up.

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