Give me a vada over a Krispy Kreme any day. These savory doughnuts often have a hole in the middle—just like the sugar-glazed sort—but are instead made from spiced lentil flour. There are plenty of places to get South Indian vadas (pronounced "waa-daas"), but it's hard to find a good one that's freshly fried. Recently, I discovered a restaurant where you can crunch on excellent vadas with various chutneys, or eat them paired with idli, dunked in lentil soup, bobbing in sambar, or soaking in a thick blanket of spiced yogurt. And that's just the vada selection. This restaurant fashions 13 different kinds of dosas and six species of utthappam, all of them made with a skill and care that can't be faked. So I'm going out on a very wobbly limb and declaring that Staten Island has a restaurant worth trekking to—the forgotten borough has just scored its first South Indian eatery, and it's among the very... More >>>