Chicago >Food & Dining > Hema's Kitchen
6404 N Oakley Ave, Chicago, IL | Directions 6064541.997850 -87.687440
Neighborhoods: Far North Side, West Rogers Park, West Rogers Park (West Ridge)
Read this and only then PROCEED – Wish I had read this write-up on Yelp before I ventured out to blow my $120 in partying in this horrible restaurant.
The views are cut-pasted from Yelp and though this was not written by me it actually sums up, actually mirrors my recent experience at Hema's correctly.
"Please, do not take this as self promotion or eulogizing of self. I have been a Food critic/writer for around 17 years and with over 570 articles syndicated to various Publications across the world. I specialize in reviewing Indian, Pakistani, Middle-Eastern, African and Mainland Chinese cuisine and my articles have been printed in some of the leading Indian and International dailies.
Now that said, I feel very intrigued and piqued by the naivety and ignorance of an average American, and their understanding of foreign cuisine. What else explains the ardent following of this otherwise banal, greasy, absolutely UN-Indian cuisine dished out at Hema's Kitchen. The food served here would not have passed muster with an average Indian palette. I tried out this place not once, not twice but thrice and each time came out feeling cheated and my regions cuisine misrepresented. Though, I must add the service was extremely warm and friendly. The tandoori Chicken was grilled in regular home oven and was as dry and bland as sun dried carcass found in Sahara's. The Green Curry Fish was greasy and the fish straight outta refrigerator; cold and tasteless. The biryani untouchable and the American favorite bread (roti/naan's) had the feel of the one that you find on most super-market shelves. All in all the experience was that of a complete non-experience. Honestly, I wish I had not done this review as I hate running down a business and also because, I know how hard it is for a restaurateur to operate in these hard times. But, I also felt that, it was my duty to inform and educate my fellow American's about how their naivety and ignorance is been taken for a ride. Also, what irks me is misrepresentation of regional cuisine. If anyone of you including the Hema owners need further clarifications on this matter then you all could please, write to me at capgemini@rediffmail com. I haven't used an alias or a pseudonym to hide my identity so, you that you can see I talk the walk and have no ulterior motive but, what has been aforesaid in writing this review." - Kayenn
Not worth it! – Folks Beware,
1. Hema's Kitchen does not cater authentic Indian food. E.g. all different curries taste the same! more like typical home cook food!!
2. How come mostly White Americans are their customers??and why Indians don't eat at this restaurant in numbers though its located in the heart land of South Asian-Town in Chicago (Devon St)? Indians don't go to this restaurant much (no taste!!!!!)
3. No freshly made NAANS!! why they deny this must South Asian bread in their restaurants!!
4. Cleanness/service issues are reported by many here.
There are many other good restaurants beside this one. So avoid this one or becoming their regular patron!!
hemas would be great without boogs in food – this place was one of my favorites-unfortunately you should all know i found a small termite or baby insect in my food. i was in the food service for 15 years and never had this issue with any customers. i was a patron of hemas for less than a month before discovering the boog. HEMA if you read this please clean your place up so I can eat there again in the distant future!!! boogs and some of the EMPLOYEES as well.
Ever been served by Arrogant and Crude people ?? – Let me start by saying that the restaurant is owned by a bunch of arrogant
I was given a lot of positive reviews about the restaurant and wanted to check it out. I was going with family who had a few dietary restrictions and I called them in advance to determine if they would cater to their dietary compulsions. I painfully explained them what the restrictions meant and got a response saying "Yes, we absolutely cater to it."
Moments later , we were at the restaurant and started ordering the appetizers. To this, they responded that we cannot make this and we cannot make that. Upon playing back the phone conversation I had with them, their arrogant manager responded by saying (and I quote) , " Well, we made a mistake on the phone. So now, you want to eat or no !!!"
I got up and was about the leave the restaurant when I over-heard him telling some of his other customers " I should try to be more selective in who I allow in my restaurant. "
I am definitely not entering the restaurant but would recommend anyone and everyone to ensure that such restaurants don't spoil the restaurant scene of Chicago . We can live without idiots like Hemas Kitchen.
Best of Chicago? Not even close! – My wife chose this place for a family dinner based on the reviews here. I am very fond of Indian food and have tried many restaurants across America during my business and leisure travel. "Best of Chicago" should be the best of best, right? Wrong!
Ambiance - OK. Indian restaurants are not "expected" to have such things. Average
Service - Hmm.. They were pretty quick in seating us, but were not equipped to handle my 2.5 yr olds "unique" needs. Average
Quality of food - We ordered Vegetable Pakora and Masala Papad for appetizer. Though pakoras were all onion pakoras, they were really good. Masala papad was a flop - consisted of roasted papad topped with a real small amount of onions, peppers and tomatoes. Not what I expected. Our main dishes were Chicken Biriyani, Channa Murg and Nans. I'll start with Biriyani - bland, chicken was old/stale, the dish overall tasted pretty bad. Channa Murg - tasted good until I had a bite of Chicken - old/stale. Nans - they lacked the softness of Indian bread altogether. Overall the food was pretty appalling - especially considering this place has such rave reviews on this site.
I am sorry to state that I will not recommend this location to any genuine Indian food enthusiast.
Wow -- that's spicy Indian food – The food is terrific here and unbelievably spicy. I can usually handle the heat, but Hema's is outrageous. Good thing it's BYOB, since you'll need plenty of beverages (and there's an Indian liquor store right around the corner). The atmosphere is real homey and the service is, too. So feel free to ask about the various dishes and then share everything.
perfection – Absolutely fantastic! Not for the faint of heart when it comes to the spice index, but this surpasses any Indian food I have encountered... including all that London had to offer!
BEST INDIAN FOOD IN CHICAGO!!! – Four months ago when I moved back to the city I was on a mission to find a decent indian place. Hema's was the 8th one I tried, I fell in LOVE! I haven't even considered trying another now. I have to have it at least once a week (but usually twice), it's so good it's addictive!
They are happy to add a little more spice to a dish if that is what you like (I do it all the time). Both locations have amazingly sweet servers, that will always help you with pronunciation. All the food is made from start to finish, when you order it, meaning cleaned, chopped and cooked then, not sitting around. You need to try, you'll never want to go any where else! I promise.
Wonderful authentic Indian Food at great price. – Wonderful Indian food, at a great price. Service was friendly and warm. BYOB. Only negative -- they don't have a Clay Oven, so no Tandoori or Naan.
Worst possible service – First of all, food at Hema's is probably one of the best in Chicago. But apart from that, you would not find anything good about it. Ambience is poor and service takes the cake. I used to go there a lot, but grew tired of waiting over an hour before my food came. This time when I complained, they had no explanation for this slow pace. In any case, curry is the same in all foods, so why not be a little faster? I would never recommend it to any of my friends and have decided against going to Hema's ever.
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