Who’s got it? That’s a good question, and something I’ve tried to puzzle out many times. My and my husband’s reviews are below; note that I always order the vegetarian option (paneer tikka) and he always orders non-veg (seekh kebab or taka tak).
- Roomali – 97 Lexington Avenue
Price: $4.75-6.00 each
Yelp reviews: 4 stars
My review – Roomali’s rolls are not bad. In truth, has anyone ever had a kathi roll that was bad? They don’t knock me out, but they are pretty good and conveniently located in Curry Hill.
Husband’s review – Roomali has gone downhill. Dry meat, smaller portions and bad service. They do, however, have good adrak (ginger) tea, and paan is sold right next door. Paan is an important feature.
- Kati Roll Company – 99 MacDougal Street and 49 West 39th Street
Price: $3.25-6.25 each
Yelp reviews: 4 stars
My review – Kati Roll Company is an adorable crowded little space by Bleecker Street with an illustrated menu (e.g. picture of a cow signifies beef rolls) and big Bollywood posters on the walls. These kathi rolls are, in my opinion, much better than Roomali’s. Yum! I might be biased because I have a positive association with KRC – one of my first few dates with my husband involved buying my first kati rolls ever here and walking with them to Washington Square Park.
Husband’s review – Kati Roll Company is good, but too clean. Kathi rolls are street food in India, so they need some grease, some dirt, some filth!
- WINNER: Best Kati Roll in NYC
Desi Food Truck – 50th Street btwn 6th & 7th Ave (M-F lunch) and Broadway btwn Spring and Broome (weekends 11-7)
Price: $4-4.50 each
Yelp reviews: 3.5 stars
My review – I LOVE the Desi Food Truck. We discovered this gem when it used to be on 27th Street and 5th Avenue. As a recent WSJ article put it, “it’s hard to miss a yellow van plastered with posters of Bollywood stars. Peek closer and you see the metallic surface adorned with Pakistani tribal art, a roof decorated with embroidered curtains and an unmistakable whiff of fresh lachha parathas.” The kati rolls are greasy and oh-so-good. I was also charmed by the fact that the owner personally messaged me on Yelp to thank me for my positive review.
Husband’s review – As I said, kathi rolls are greasy food, and Desi Food Truck comes the closest to that. It’s not healthy and it’s probably not clean, but it tastes good.