Cafe Taj
Cafe Taj

Cafe Taj

  • Dining Style: Fine Dining
  • Website: http://www.mycafetaj.com/
  • Phone: 7038270444
  • Hours of Operation:
    Dinner: Sunday - Thursday: 5:00PM - 10:00PM Friday & Saturday:5:00PM - 10:30PM
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Discover,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Indian
  • Dress Code: Casual Dress
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Beer, Full Bar, Late Night, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Patio/Outdoor Dining, Takeout, View, Wheelchair Access, Wine, Wine Bar
  • Catering: Call us for details

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Old Dominion Drive
  • Parking: Private Lot
  • Parking Details: Garage Parking
A word from Cafe Taj
Cafe Taj Restaurant was established in 1992. The atmosphere at Cafe Taj is casual and inviting, offering fresh food with a friendly and attentive staff. Food at Cafe Taj is prepared fresh daily. Cafe Taj offers an extensive wine and beer list and a fully stocked bar.Creamy curries, rose and cardamom-scented sweets, fragrant grilled meats and seafood cooked in tandoor making it Low Fat .Lamb chops, aromatic with spices, the flavorful chicken and the smoky salmon.
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Cafe Taj reviews from OpenTable diners
5 reviews since May 4, 2014
Overall Rating3.8
  • Food3.8
    Service4
  • Ambiance3.2
    Noise LevelQuiet
100% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
neighborhood gem (3)fit for foodies (1)good for groups (1)romantic (1)special occasion (1)Show More
  • A nice option in McLean
    calypsoVIP
    Dined on 7/21/2014
    Great to find a good restaurant in McLean. We enjoyed the meal - nice flavors, although the dishes that the waiter said were spicy, really weren't. The Naan with the fruit and nuts was very good. Service was attentive and accommodating. Café Taj will definitely be on my McLean rotation when meeting friends.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 4 ratings-only reviews submitted since May 4, 2014
    • Overall Rating3.8
    • Food4
    • Ambiance3.3
    • Service4
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • The following 68 reviews are from the Cafe Taj reviews archive.
  • Good food and great service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 3/6/2014
    The waiting staff were awesome and very attentive. The food was solid and the Resturant staff gave us several things to try at no cost!
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Good Food
    Abhi
    Dined on 11/9/2013
    Great food and service. Will definitely go back again.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, romantic, late-night find, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • a taj too spicy
    GalsVIP
    Dined on 10/28/2013
    Tasty yummy Indian food. Enjoy spicy dish. Mild dishes are particularly flavorful.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, great for brunch, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Decent, but Average Indian Food
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007VIP
    Dined on 9/11/2013
    It was a week night 8:30pm & my friends wanted Indian food. I was introduced to Cafe Taj by an Indian friend & I enjoyed it, so I suggested it - it's in my McLean neighborhood & open till 10:00. Ordered butter chix, a shrimp dish & an eggplant dish & usual nan. Chix was okay, but disappointing - didn't taste smooth & a bit sour. Shrimp & eggplant dishes were tastier - all served w/Basmati rice. Just after 9:00 we decided to split the mixed grill. They weren't thrilled & even tried to dissuade us from ordering cause it would take "at least 30 min," but we did & it wasn't 30 min & was the best dish. Overall, about average incl. wait staff - nothing special. Nice menu selections, but I felt a bit too expensive. Portions were mostly sufficient.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Mediocre
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 8/15/2013
    We ordered the two entrees...but the sauces, tasted much the same. One was ginger chicken, one was curried shrimp. Both also looked like the same sauces. We had to pay $4 extra for the shrimp...not worth it, as portion was not small. We ordered Naan and expected a charge for that, but the raita sauce is also an extra charge. Restaurant was very empty, which is a shame. Could have been so much better. I'd like to return, but I suggest they do some menu choices that reflect different sauces.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Nice, relaxing meal
    JeffVIP
    Dined on 6/14/2013
    A good Indian restaurant with no pressure wait staff. Perfect for a relaxing night after a long day/week of work.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, kid-friendly
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Good Spot, Good Neighborhood Eating
    AlanAceCooper
    Dined on 5/12/2013
    I wanted to take my wife someplace different for Mother's Day. I had spent far too much money on 2 dinner's for her birthday 3 weeks prior. The Goal? No place generic and the meal has to be under $100.00 - Cafe Taj fit the bill nicely. Very, very good food, the place was fairly quiet and filled with couples at 7:30 on a Sunday evening, which I thought was awesome! The staff is friendly and they make sure you have enough of everything. I will add... In their market area, they would fair better and gather another grouping of customers, by simply updating their decor. Switching from plastic flowers, to live flowers or plants adds a special flare. Overall, a good experience and I'd be willing to return.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Experience!
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 3/26/2013
    I ate here for the first time. I am pretty knowledgeable about Indian food. I ate at dozens of other Indian restaurants. I don't remember too many of them being better than Cafe Taj. In addition to delicious food, service was wonderful. Personally I loved the Chicken Tikka Masala and the Paneer dish that we tried for the first time(I think it was the Shahi Paneer). We also ordered Bread Basket, which was awesome. Overall a great experience. I would love to go back sooner than later.
    Special Features:
    good for groups, great for outdoor dining, special occasion, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Absolutely loved Cafe Taj
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 3/9/2013
    I absolutely loved this place. I really enjoyed my meal, it was a great mixture of delicious food, great service, generous portions and good prices. We would definitely be returning soon!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, notable wine list, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, hot spot
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Horrible on all fronts
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 3/4/2013
    What a disappointment! This place used to be fabulous, but something changed. Every single morsel, from appetizer to bread to entree to dessert, was grossly overcooked. Fried appetizers were dark brown and even black on edges. Naan was charred to crispness on the bottom. Butter chicken, their longtime star, lost all of its subtle spices and was nothing but dry chunks of chicken in what tasted like canned tomato sauce. Waiter was sloppy and inattentive, even though we were the only ones in this usually lively neighborhood restaurant. Didn't wipe crumbs from table between courses, didn't offer to replace dishes that were left untouched they were so bad. This was a regular haunt for us, but won't be going back.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Nice to have a good local
    KPvirginiaVIP
    Dined on 3/2/2013
    Nice to have a good local Indian restaurant, but the food is not as good as it was in the early days (over 15 years ago!)
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Lamb was so tough I could
    N3JTVIP
    Dined on 1/20/2013
    Lamb was so tough I could not chew it. Some pieces were only mildly tough. The management shrugged its shoulders at this. Not the reaction one might hope for from a responsible restaurant. In the future, if we return, it will be chicken tika masala. That's pretty good at Taj.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • We had a large party of 7.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 1/19/2013
    We had a large party of 7. I had made a reservation through Open Table for 5 and that was confirmed. During the week, we added 2 to our party, so I called the restaurant to add those 2 to the reservation. That was confirmed by the restaurant. But when we got there, they did not have my reservation and had to scramble to accommodate us. I am not sure what happened to my reservation. The food is always great here, but they are a bit short staffed for a Saturday night, so the service was a bit slow. It was okay for us because it gave us time to visit. I am sure that the unexpected group of 7 added to that. But this is truly a neighborhood gem-delicious food and friendly atmosphere.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Not happy
    blease
    Dined on 1/11/2013
    When my daughter and I went into the restaurant I told the waiter that I had a reservation, it seemed like he did not know about opentable. He just seated us. The waitress never introduced herself nor did she say welcome. She tossed our napkins onto the table each time she filled the water glasses. From that point we could not stay. We were hoping to have indian food that evening, but I guess it was not going to happen.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • The Food is always wonderful
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 11/17/2012
    The Food is always wonderful here. But this time, though I had booked through Open Table and had requested a window table, we walked in and a lady working as a waitress told us that we could not have the larger window table. This seemed odd insofar as the restaurant was pretty empty when we arrived. I find it difficult to eat at the small tables when you order several dishes as the space is very limited. But right away, when we uttered our dismay, another waiter came over and offered us the table we wanted. So the situation was quickly corrected. After that, all was well, the food was wonderful and the service was good. I had never seen that woman there before, so perhaps she was new and did not know the ropes yet. Perennially good here.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Food excellent, service good,
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013
    Dined on 10/20/2012
    Food excellent, service good, but food preparation very slow.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Maitre'd not very accomplished,
    GeneVIP
    Dined on 10/19/2012
    Maitre'd not very accomplished, I am not sure he had been one before; the service wasn't all that great; food was good.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Poor food...everything tasted
    bartlett
    Dined on 8/16/2012
    Poor food...everything tasted like brown gravy. I won't return.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Food and Service were both
    StiggVIP
    Dined on 8/4/2012
    Food and Service were both very good. Appetizers were really good and we tried several dishes. Bread was not as good as other places I have had which was a bit disapointing. Salmon was a huge portion actually and was good but not as spicy as I would have hoped.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Some food was cold, but flavors
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 7/20/2012
    Some food was cold, but flavors were good. For a relaxed casual night out it was good. Ambience is more fit for lunch or a cafe atmosphere.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Disappointed
    DarnedifinoVIP
    Dined on 7/7/2012
    We were a little disappointed this time. Have had better meals here. Tried fish for the first time and ordered the salmon masala. The sauce was good, but the fish was dry and overcooked.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Cafe Taj is a nice place for
    GMnMD
    Dined on 7/3/2012
    Cafe Taj is a nice place for the McLean, VA neighborhood. The food was good, the ambiance quaint and the waiters friendly. However, this place is better served for lunch and not dinner.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, neighborhood gem, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Delicious Indian Food in McLean
    ShaunVIP
    Dined on 6/24/2012
    I had last been to this place in 2006 and was pleasantly surprised that it was as good as it still is. I really enjoyed the butter chicken and the chicken tikka. The rice was delicious as was the Naan (bread). Also, the service was very good. I'll be back. PS: My Wife is Indian and she liked it very much.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • I like Cafe Taj but they are
    N3JTVIP
    Dined on 6/23/2012
    I like Cafe Taj but they are short-sighted, especially for a restaurant that needs to build it clientele. With the onion culcha a small container of riata was served. (Riata is that yoghurt dip for the bread.) I wanted a little more and they brought a small container of it. They then charged me $2.99 for that! I questioned the charge and got a runaround, which is a skill at that place given there were only 3 people working there -- none the boss! This little charge makes me NOT recommend Cafe Taj. Trivial? Yes! Annoying? Yes, enough to consider competitors.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • The food at Cafe Taj was very
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006
    Dined on 5/25/2012
    The food at Cafe Taj was very good and was prepared in a timely manner. We were happy to sit outside and that proved to be a good experience. The ambience was quiet. The service at Cafe Taj is excellent. Never intrusive, but, always available to meet our needs.
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • great Indian food. Outdoor
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007VIP
    Dined on 5/19/2012
    great Indian food. Outdoor patio is nice and quiet
    Special Features:
    great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Very good food at a reasonable
    Traveller
    Dined on 5/19/2012
    Very good food at a reasonable price. I had the lamb vindaloo and it truly had a quick, when they say spicy they mean spicy
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • This was my first taste of
    Pamame
    Dined on 5/4/2012
    This was my first taste of India. The food was delicious, the staff were so helpful explaining dishes , and they had both northern and southern dishes.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, great for outdoor dining, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Good location, easy parking.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2006VIP
    Dined on 3/10/2012
    Good location, easy parking. Attentive staff. However, food was only so-so. Butter chicken was dry.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Food was so-so. Service was
    JaydeeVIP
    Dined on 3/9/2012
    Food was so-so. Service was horrible. We had to wait an hour to get what we had ordered. I think that they had forgotten us and put in the order after I asked where our food was. The couple next to us were arguing most of the time, so that added to our frustration. Probably should have just left when did not get served promptly. Don't plan to go back. Sadly, the last time we went to Cafe Taj, about a year ago, both service and food were good.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Our trip to Cafe Taj started
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 3/2/2012
    Our trip to Cafe Taj started out on a sour note when we were greeted at the door. Although we had a reservation and the restaurant had many unoccupied tables, we were directed to a table just a few feet from the entrance. On a cold rainy night, this was unacceptable and I requested another table. The staff person who greeted us did not make us feel welcome. The food was tasty so I gave them 2 stars instead of 1. There was a smoky atmosphere in the dining room that probably came from the Tandoori oven in the kitchen. My husband who has asthma said that it gave him a choking feeling.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Basic Indian food is good.
    DCChica
    Dined on 2/17/2012
    Basic Indian food is good. Menu should be more creative and diverse, including desserts.
    Special Features:
    romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • The Cafe Taj is a nice neighborhood
    McLeanMomVIP
    Dined on 2/14/2012
    The Cafe Taj is a nice neighborhood restaurant for us. However, we were a bit disappointed in the food when we went on Valentine's Day. The lentil soup was watery and tasteless. We complained and they made a new batch, which was slighly improved, but not a nice, thick soup that we had hoped for. The service is very good; the ambiance is nice and overall a good value for the money. We will return, but we're more impressed with the lunchtime buffet than the dinner.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Best neighborhood restauranat
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 2/11/2012
    Fabulous food, and the service, which has been spotty in the past, was very good. I recommend this restaurant.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for outdoor dining, neighborhood gem, romantic, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Nice Change of Taste
    OpenTable Diner Since 2012
    Dined on 2/7/2012
    The food was very good. The service was a bit slow.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • The service was awful. However,
    OpenTable Diner Since 2011
    Dined on 2/7/2012
    The service was awful. However, the vegetarian curry I had was amazing.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • bland, dry food
    OpenTable Diner Since 2007
    Dined on 2/4/2012
    We were not very impressed with the food at this Restaurant. The food was bland and it appeared that the meats were simply coated in sauce instead of being slow cooked in the sauce. The lamb was very tough. I want my Indian food to have a bit more of a kick with tender slow cooked meats.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Food was very good, but service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 2/3/2012
    Food was very good, but service was a little spotty.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • We had a wonderful dining
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 2/1/2012
    We had a wonderful dining experience the other night. Hope you guys don't change. Thanks.
    Special Features:
    romantic, great for lunch
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet