Guru’s Rapid Review: Sizler Tandoori, Orlando, FL

Orlando’s International Drive is a hub for entertainment complexes, restaurants and retail shops designed for guests to enjoy their day or night without going to the nearby theme parks. Amongst the restaurants, there are several Halal restaurants for Muslim families to enjoy without having to travel far. Sizler, with one “z” is an Indo-Pakistani restaurant that has been around for the better part of a decade serving guests from around the world. It has had moments of inconsistency in food and service quality but has undergone change in management hands and we recently took the opportunity to visit to see what changes they have made.

FOOD

This is a very traditional Indo-Pakistani restaurant with all the customary dishes. Their sizzler menu was their claim to fame. Dishes came hot off the grill in an iron skillet garnished with grilled vegetables still sizzling as it was presented on the table. A definite feast for the eyes, ears, nose and tongue. The spice combination and level would be considered mild to moderate compared to other Halal Indian restaurants in the city. It makes sense given the diverse clientele they cater to on I-Drive. The food presentation has definitely improved as they aspire to a more fine dining experience to justify the price point of the menu. Again, their sizzler grill menu is where you should focus your attention if you visit this spot.

Tandoori masala curry with chapli kabob
Chicken Tandoori Masala Curry with beef Chapli Kabob

LOCATION

While there is stiff competition amongst the many Indian restaurants in the area, Sizler is in a prime location on I-Drive, to attract hungry patrons. They have consistently offered Halal food and not given into the distraction of serving alcohol to raise their financial bottom line. It is located about a ten minute walk from the Orlando Eye and is near the Titanic artifact museum. They are located in a small strip plaza next to a Disney Gift store and Tattoo parlor and share the limited parking spaces with these establishments. There are some parking lots nearby for those willing to walk.

ATMOPSHERE

They have undergone an internal remodel from the previous dated décor. The black and gray motif with dark hardwood flooring has created a more modern and sleek appearance lending itself to a more upscale dining experience.   They have also expanded the dining area to accommodate more tables. Yet the layout provides for privacy as tables are not grouped close together. They have covered outdoor seating for those wanting to take advantage of the Florida weather.

Sizler Interior
Remodeled space to expand dining area.

SERVICE

Sizler, like many Indian restaurants in it’s class have consistently struggled to provide attentive care and service. While the staff is able to provide the basic requirements, service can be a little rushed and disjointed. It may be a function of understaffing, undertraining or other inefficiencies; it fell short of enhancing the dining experience. Having said that, it wasn’t a bad experience, it’s just not what was expected based on the based on the décor, atmosphere and menu price point of the establishment.

Chaat
A light refreshing chaat

PRICING

Given the location is in the middle of a tourist hub, the pricing is naturally going to be higher. Looking at the menu, there is a premium to pay for similar dishes when comparing it to other Indian restaurants located outside of the tourist hubs. However, there are ways to improve value to offset these costs. The main one is convenience of location. Furthermore, portion size can also create value. While the meal portion initially seemed small, there was sufficient amount for a hungry individual. There are options on the menu for combo and platters to be shared which can also create value.

Sizler Outdoor
Covered outdoor seating area

OVERALL

In terms of Halal Indian restaurants in Orlando, Sizler has been a favorite amongst locals and guests alike for many years. With the new management and overall new décor, the restaurant has had new flash of enthusiasm. The food quality is good and the sizzler menu continues to be a crowd pleaser. Overall, the pricing while higher is justifiable based on the convenient location and food quality.

Food Category: Indo-Pakistani

Guru’s Rapid Review: 3 of 5 Stars

Must Try: Sizler Mixed Grill, Chapli Kabob

Address: 7511 International Drive, Orlando, Fl, 32819

Phone: (407) 345-4980

Website:  www.sizlertandoori.com

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