Tucked into the corner of the Century South shopping center in Southwest Austin sits Asiana Indian Cuisine, an authentic Indian food restaurant that uses family recipes and techniques.
Pandiyan Kaliyamoorthy and Loganathan Appavu, who have been friends and business partners since 1996, co-own and manage the restaurant.
Both owners attended culinary school and met while working as chefs for Sheraton Hotels & Resorts in India.
“I love to cook,” Kaliyamoorthy said. “When I get the chance, I cook for the staff or make something for our daily special.”
After working seven years for Sheraton Hotels & Resorts, both men learned their way around the kitchen, Kaliyamoorthy said. Despite their families’ concerns, they decided to begin their search for new work in the U.S.
“My family didn’t really want me to come, but I asked them to just let me try it,” Kaliyamoorthy said. “They eventually came around to the idea.”
In 2003, Kaliyamoorthy and Appavu came to the U.S. to work for Mogul Indian Restaurant in Houston. Three years later, they began exploring the option of pursuing a lifelong dream to open their own restaurant.
“I learned a lot there, and I thought that maybe I could own my own restaurant and do it better,” Kaliyamoorthy said.
In April 2006, they opened Chola Indian Restaurant in Round Rock. They sold that business in 2011 to come to Southwest Austin and opened Asiana Indian Cuisine on Jan. 14, 2012.
Kaliyamoorthy said the restaurant attracts a lot of regular customers seeking authentic Indian flavors. Kaliyamoorthy and Appavu created the menu together, adding their own twist to some of the traditional homemade dishes they grew up with in India.
Kaliyamoorthy said he prefers spicy dishes, such as the Chicken Chettinad or the Goat Pepper Fry, but he said the more popular dishes on the menu are the appetizers, such as the Cauliflower ’65,’ a deep-fried, marinated, spicy cauliflower, and the Veggie samosa, a crispy turnover stuffed with potatoes and peas. The Mango Mousse dish on the dessert menu is also a fan favorite.
“I feel happy when customers come in and taste and enjoy our food,” Kaliyamoorthy said. “I feel so happy when they feel happy.”
Asiana Indian Cuisine
801 E. William Cannon Drive, Ste. 205, Austin
Hours: Tue.-Thu. 11 a.m.-2 p.m., 5-9:30 p.m.; Fri. 11 a.m.-2 p.m., 5-10 p.m.; Sat. noon-3 p.m., 5-10 p.m.; Sun. noon-3 p.m., 5-9:30 p.m.; closed Mon.
Mango Mousse includes homemade ice cream blended with mango pulp and vanilla extract and topped with assorted fruit.