From his perch working at Satish Palace in Montclair and living locally, two things were clear to Kamal Dhanda: One, there was a substantial Indian population in the southern Bergen/northern Essex area; and two, Indian dining options in the area were limited.
Dhanda was well-equipped to do something about this: He had been raised in the Punjab region of India; his family had run an Indian restaurant in Columbus, Ohio, called Taste of India; and his cousin Resham L. Dhanda was a chef specializing in the family's native northern Indian cuisine. So in 2010, they banded together to start a family venture, Kamal Palace, out of a small strip mall in North Arlington.
Today it's a popular neighborhood gathering spot, with most or all of the 34 seats often taken up at lunch and dinner. There's a popular lunch buffet Tuesday through Sunday ($7.99 to $8.99), and a steady stream of customers coming in for takeout orders. The small, dim room is no-frills, with tight booths and plates that you might find at the grocery store.
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