By Elena Kadvany
Mountain View's Amber India shutters; Amber Club opensUploaded: Oct 15, 2015
Fans of Amber India in Mountain View: Don't panic.
The location at 2290 El Camino Real has closed after 20 years, but relocated just barely down the street at 4926 El Camino Real, which is across the street and technically in Los Altos.
The new restaurant, formerly the home of Pineapple Grill, is massive, with three levels: an upper-level banquet room that can seat 175 people for private events; a mid-level dining room with an outdoor patio area; and a 60's Hollywood/Bollywood-themed lounge on the bottom floor dubbed the "Cellar." Each level has its own bar and kitchen.
The mid-level restaurant officially opened for business today, Oct. 15, owner Vijay Bist said. The lounge will open on Monday, Oct. 19.
The kitchen team from the Mountain View Amber India, headed by chef Salinder Singh (who has been with the restaurant for 20 years) and chef Sibji Bista (who has been with Amber for a decade), will continue to run things at the new location, Bist wrote in an email.
A new executive chef, Rupam Bhagat, has been brought in to serve as "cuisine director" for the banquet room, lounge and private dining. Bhagat comes with an associates degree in culinary arts from the Culinary Institute of America and cooking experience at several Ritz Carlton Hotel locations, including as close as Half Moon Bay and as far as Portugal, Bahrain and Naples.
The new restaurant's dining room menu will be the same as the longtime Mountain View location's, Bist said.
Amber India's barrah kebab with cubes of lamb marinated in ginger garlic and yogurt and roasted black cumin. Photo by Natalia Nazarova/Palo Alto Weekly.
"We have focused on keeping the restaurant move as lateral as possible so the patrons continue to get and enjoy the same food and as much of the ambiance," he wrote in an email.
The kitchen team will debut new menu items in the "Cellar" like a spiced fried chicken with curry black-mustard honey and poutine with braised goat, goat cheese and fried chickpeas.
The lounge will also be open late and offer "something like the open mic, but for the tech music enthusiasts who would either come play with other fellow musicians or with their group of friends," Bist wrote. The lounge is decorated with sketches of Hollywood and Bollywood stars from the 1960s, several guitars and local art, Bist said.
A cocktail menu has been crafted with the help of Nick Melle, a consultant who has worked with well-known San Francisco watering holes Trick Dog and Smuggler's Cove. New Amber Club cocktails include the "Hotel California" with bonded bourbon, creme de cacao, lemon juice, ginger beer and tamarind; and the "Desperado," which combines a curry-infused honey, with tequila, Cocchi Americano and lemon.
Bist also owns Amber Dhara on University Avenue in Palo Alto and Valencia Street in San Francisco, Amber India in San Francisco's South of Market neighborhood, Amber India Santana Row and Amber Cafe in Mountain View.