Clay Oven Cuisine of India
Clay Oven Cuisine of India

Clay Oven Cuisine of India

  • Dining Style: Fine Dining
  • Website: http://www.clayovenirvine.com/
  • Phone: 9495522851x
  • Hours of Operation:
    Lunch: Tues-Sun, 11:00am - 2:00pm
    Dinner: Tues-Sun, 5:30pm - 10:00pm
    CLOSED MONDAY
  • Payment Options: AMEX,Carte Blanche,Diners Club,Discover,JCB,MasterCard,Visa
  • Cuisine: Indian, Wild Game, Global, International
  • Executive Chef: Geeta Bansal
  • Dress Code: Business Casual
  • Accepts Walk-Ins: Yes
  • Additional Details: Beer, Gluten-free Menu, Non-Smoking Restaurant, Personal wines welcome, Personal wines welcome (corkage fee applies), Takeout, Wheelchair Access, Wine
  • Catering: Full service catering - Premier caterer to all major hotels and event sites requiring Indian regional cuisines.
  • Special Events: Summer Wine Event, Monday June 23rd
    Calling all wine aficionados for our Summer Wine Event! Join us for a fun evening of summer wines and interesting small bites! We will be offering tastes of wines from France, Italy, and California along with small bites. The tapas style plates will range from $6-$10. Regular dinner service will not be available that evening. Entry for the evening will be $30 which gives you the opportunity to sample all 16+ wines. 4:30pm - 7:30pm, Monday June 23rd. For reservations for this special event, call us at (949)-552-2851!

Getting there

  • Cross Street: Irvine Center Dr.
  • Parking: Public Lot
  • Parking Details: Shopping center parking - easy access.
A word from Clay Oven Cuisine of India
A meal at The Clay Oven is destined to change the way guests think of Indian dining. Taking inspiration from the regional cuisines of India, The Clay Oven offers a selection of seafood, poultry, meats and vegetables. This jewel-like restaurant has a welcoming glow reflected by the soft contours of the walls, eclectic artwork, and candlelit tables. The delicious aromas wafting through the interior prepare diners for a "traditional modern" Indian dining experience. Owners Geeta and Praveen Bansal have been serving loyal guests for over 25 years, tickling their palates with dishes like Pumpkin Tamarind soup, Pomegranate Glazed Quail and Nilgiri Scallops. The menu is always evolving, changing with the seasons and comparable to cuisine offered at fine dining restaurants in Delhi, Bombay and Bangalore. The Clay Oven is a local favorite and, at the same time, a trendsetter for fine Indian dining in Southern California.
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Awards voted by OpenTable diners
  • Diners' Choice WinnerBest Service
  • Diners' Choice WinnerFit for Foodies
  • Diners' Choice WinnerNeigborhood Gem
Clay Oven Cuisine of India reviews from OpenTable diners
38 reviews since May 24, 2014
Overall Rating4.5
  • Food4.6
    Service4.9
  • Ambiance4.2
    Noise LevelModerate
100% of reviewers would recommend this restaurant to a friend.
fit for foodies (23)neighborhood gem (23)special occasion (10)good for groups (7)romantic (7)kid-friendly (4)great for lunch (4)notable wine list (3)great for brunch (2)late-night find (1)hot spot (1)Show More
  • Finally Indian Dining That gets it
    BS1ME
    Dined on 9/17/2014
    What an amazing meal. Outstanding service from an owner that get's it. Fresh ingredients, not oily and loaded with cream. Indian Food done right. They have the traditional and they have exotic....rabbit, elk, boar. samosa taster one with kale and kimchee? amazing. Swordfish that melts in your mouth. Let the owner recommend the food and sit back and take a trip back to india.... about time! well done!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Our Third Visit
    Elaine
    Dined on 8/24/2014
    Once again we very much enjoyed Clay Oven. I had planned on ordering the lamb shank which I have had before, but the owner said it's possible I might change my mind. He was right, as when he suggested the lamb chops. I couldn't resist. My husband stuck with his original choice, the rack of baby back ribs. My lamb chops were thick, tender, tasty and cooked perfectly. My husbands ribs were fall off the bone tender with a great sauce, nothing like the usual barbecue sauce. In addition, we ordered a spinach dish which was also excellent. Our server was wonderful. The owner is a very pleasant man who made us feel comfortable. I rated the ambience outstanding because we like a quiet restaurant.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • lovetodine
    LovetodineVIP
    Dined on 8/23/2014
    Clay Oven is simply the best Indian restaurant in Southern Calif. The food is fresh, prepared exactly as you want it. There are always interesting new items with the change of seasons. The owner and son are wonderful hosts,make you feel like family, always remember you and make great food suggestions. We typically dine there at least once a month and each time the experience is excellent.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Always perfect!
    DrENGVIP
    Dined on 8/22/2014
    I have been dining at Clay Oven for over 20 years and they never stop being amazing! The food is terrific, the beer and wine menus are maturing nicely and the service is exceptional! Now living in Michigan, I make dining here a priority on each return visit.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Don;t Go There
    dissappointed
    Dined on 8/19/2014
    Food was just OK, not great, but what shocked us was the bill. We were charged $ 70 ( seventy dollars) for a lunch that was barely worth # 25 I would never go there again, or recomend it to any of my friends.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Clay Oven is the best Indian
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 8/17/2014
    Praveen continues to provide the best Indian dining experience in Orange County.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Fabulous
    ShoshanaVIP
    Dined on 8/8/2014
    If you didn't know it was there, you could easily walk past and miss this gem! My husband and I were groaning with delight all the way through the meal. This is the BEST Indian cuisine I have ever had, and I frequent restaurants in Northern and Southern CA. What a find!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Eclectic Indian Cuisine
    AspiringCritic
    Dined on 8/3/2014
    Very good food in a very pleasant atmosphere. We brought my mother here for a nice dinner out and were greeted by both the owner and his son. The specials were all interesting and we were pleasantly surprised to find such a wide variety of dishes on the menu, all Indian inspired, but each with a unique twist. The menu included duck, venison and rabbit. We ordered three different entrees, naan and rice for three adults. Portions weren't huge, but we all felt satisfied at the end of the meal. For the price, you're getting enough inspired, high quality food to be content. If you're looking for typical, hastily prepared curries in large quantities, this is probably not the right place to go. But if you want food with character, come here!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Incredible blending of flavors!
    OpenTableDinerVIP
    Dined on 7/29/2014
    The Clay Oven is one of my favorite restaurants when I crave a satisfying, burst of FLAVOR!!! The service is impeccable, and the meals never fail to delight. This is far and away the BEST Indian cuisine I've experienced in this country. Thank you SO much!!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Indian Food
    RAL3
    Dined on 7/25/2014
    The service is attentive and the food authentic and some dishes have a twist. Like the Habanero Chicken Vindaloo. Great flavorful dish, but you have to like it hot, cause it is! They have a good assortment of vegetarian dishes. The chef even created one for my wife. It tasted great. This is a must try and we will be coming back.
    Special Features:
    romantic, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Better every time
    OpenTable Diner Since 2005
    Dined on 7/19/2014
    We've been dining at Clay Oven since 1990, and have never been disappointed. With the menu changes that have taken place the food is getting even better every time! Fantastic food, archive and atmosphere! A favorite of ours.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Time for a Change
    DDavidsonVIP
    Dined on 7/18/2014
    Menu has been the same for the past five to six years. You get tired of the same menu of items. Its time for a change to this old menu. Its now boring. Will have to find a new place with more options.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
  • Best Indian food in OC
    davemVIP
    Dined on 7/2/2014
    Always excellent. Some dishes with a gourmet twist, some traditional. Me and my family have been here 5 times and every time was consistently great.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Always impressive!
    Nobell45
    Dined on 6/20/2014
    Brought my sister here for dinner. She is not adventurous when it comes to food, but I have raved about this restaurant for years to her. She was surprisingly very happy with everything we ordered and loved the complex flavors of all of the sauces! I personally love the food here, and think it is the best Indian food in O.C.! We will be back. The only 'issue' we had is that is got so extremely noisy in there because of a 'party' going on in the small space of the restaurant.... we were literally screaming our heads off to talk and hear each other... very disappointing. I ended up with a very hoarse throat and a true headache from screaming for 2 hours and we had to leave. But as far as service and food - EXCELLENT!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion, late-night find, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • OpenTable Diner Since 2009VIP
    Dined on 6/14/2014
    I'm old fashion when comes to "service" at a restaurant. You receive a wonderful service from the waiter as well as the manager. I love Indian food in a traditional home style but once in a while I want to taste it in a different level. Clay oven is perfect for it. Many varieties of choices of meat, great spice, very elegant. Who knew Indian food can be this way?
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Phenomenal All-Around Experience
    sidv22VIP
    Dined on 6/6/2014
    Had an exceptional experience. The staff, including the owner and his son, provided top-notch service and even created special dishes for us based on our preferences. The soups were amazing, especially the tomato soup with tomatoes from the owner's backyard. The eggplant was grilled; it is so hard to find grilled eggplant as most places fry it, and it was amazing. All the main courses, including dishes featuring lamb, chicken, and shrimp were just fantastic, as was the dessert. The owner picked out an exceptional bottle of wine.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, romantic, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Treasure Trove Indian foodie Cusine
    Foodie
    Dined on 6/4/2014
    Great dining experience , the owner was very attentive to your requests and recommended dishes and combinations accordingly. The wine list is ideal for the cuisine. We really enjoyed the experience..Noteworthy : the spices/sauces used are not over welhming and bring out the natural flavors of the main ingredients . The Feta naan was an amazing surprise ! loved it !
    Special Features:
    great for brunch, kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, romantic, special occasion, great for lunch, neighborhood gem, notable wine list
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Oustanding Find
    dingo
    Dined on 5/23/2014
    Once again, great meal. If you enjoy exotic meats they always have a special that will intrigue you. Food and Service is always the best.
    Special Features:
    kid-friendly, fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Ratings-Only Reviews
    Based on 20 ratings-only reviews submitted since May 24, 2014
    • Overall Rating4.3
    • Food4.6
    • Ambiance4.1
    • Service4.8
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • The following 281 reviews are from the Clay Oven Cuisine of India reviews archive.
  • Our favorite Indian restaurant
    rjonesirv
    Dined on 5/3/2014
    Clay Oven is near our home and we visit it often. The owner, Previn, is very attentive and we rely on him for suggestions. We have yet to order from the menu; just leave it up to them to recommend. The swordfish melts in your mouth.
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Exquisite food and friendly
    OpenTable Diner Since 2010
    Dined on 4/11/2014
    Exquisite food and friendly and impeccable service.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great food, excellent service
    OpenTable Diner Since 2014
    Dined on 4/8/2014
    Had a wonderful meal at Clay Oven. The food was spicy and fragrant but not overwhelming to an American palate. From the menu, we had the Lamb Panange, rice, and Naan as an appetizer with mint and tomato spreads. Both were excellent! We also had a beef shank tandoor and a wonderful chicken dish from the specials. This restaurant is pricy, so it befits a special occasion meal. But the atmosphere and service are both good for such an occasion.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Predictably Perfect
    lapsrusVIP
    Dined on 4/4/2014
    Yet another evening when we, at the last minute, decided to go back to the Clay Oven and were impressed by another wonderful meal. The staff is first rate and the beef kabobs, saag, and naan were perfect. If you are on a budget, go to the lunch buffet. Same great food, but much less expensive.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, great for brunch, kid-friendly, romantic, neighborhood gem, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Creative Indian
    MarcoVIP
    Dined on 3/22/2014
    Although you can get chicken tikka masala, there are a variety of really tasty and creative Indian dishes on the menu not seen on your run of the mill Northern Indian menu. Some healthy alternatives are also available such as quinoa and brown rice3
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • I think the food quality was
    Firsttimer
    Dined on 3/21/2014
    I think the food quality was overall good. But at the end of the day, it did seem pricey for general dining.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, kid-friendly, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Best Indian in OC
    Seregei8
    Dined on 3/14/2014
    My girlfriend and I have been trying to find a good Indian place in OC and haven't had much luck until Clay Oven, it was amazing! Food was incredible! The wait staff was excellent, the owner and his soon are extremely nice and do most of the serving personally. They a tremendous job reccomending wines and food, my girlfriend ordered the chicken tiki Marsala and I originall ordered a lamb dish. When I did the owner asked if I really liked lamb, when I said yes he said he would bring me something better. He brought out the most amazing lamb shank the we devoured! And it wasn't even on the menu! For my girlfriend he asked her preference on spicy she likes her dishes and brought sauces to fit her tastes exactly. We will definetly be returning!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Outstanding food and service.
    KYoungVIP
    Dined on 3/13/2014
    A delicious spread of food, and some of the best service ever. Preveen, the proprietor, made us feel welcome from the moment we walked through the door, and his attention didn't waver throughout the entire meal. His wife is the chef, and each course was extraordinary. The mixed grill special included wild boar, frog legs, quail and venison, and the seafood curry converted my husband from a curry hater to a fan. Don't let the strip mall location fool you. THis place is a little piece of Indian heaven in Irvine. MUCH better than the overpriced Tamarind of London in Newport Beach.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Elegant and Exquisite
    ShoshanaVIP
    Dined on 3/11/2014
    Who would have thought that tucked into this strip mall is the most outstanding Indian restaurant ever! Service is top-notch, flavors of all our dishes danced over our palates, and the ambiance is elegant and comfortable simultaneously. We have already made our next reservation. Can't wait!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, neighborhood gem, great for lunch, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Much love for The Clay Oven
    Robin
    Dined on 3/8/2014
    The Clay Oven is my favorite dining spot in Irvine. Terrific Indian food and fabulous customer service. The owners are so nice and make you feel special every time you dine there. I enjoy the relaxing dining environment. You can't go wrong eating there. I dine there regularly for date night and family date night. I have also purchased multiple tandoori turkeys for Thanksgiving and Christmas and everyone enjoyed them including family members who don't love Indian food. I hope you enjoy this restaurant as much as I do.
    Special Features:
    notable wine list, kid-friendly, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Finally - good Indian Food!!
    kkld
    Dined on 2/15/2014
    We have been on the hunt for good Indian food for quite some time. As it was, our favorite place was about 700 miles away, which was not especially convenient.... The service was impeccable. Our glasses were never empty, and before we even realized we needed anything, things showed up! Even the smallest of details were perfect! The food was even better. We ordered the pork vindaloo and the chicken daily special. I think I would go with chicken vindaloo next time. The pork was good, and something I had not tried before, but I prefer the taste of chicken. But this is on me, not the restaurant! The chicken special was delicious and spicy without being overpowering! The artichoke pakora app was amazing! Everything was perfect!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Service and Food
    Iziz
    Dined on 2/14/2014
    I made a reservation on-line for Valentines Day and disintegration know what to expect. I saw that the place had. Decent rating so I took a chance. I had the chicken Massala w Nananf rice and some samosas . The food was excellent and the service was even better. The man that greeted me at the door was friendly and cordial and even allowed us to dine earlier than our reservation time. I have nothing bad to say about this place. It was my first time eating there and I will be back
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • wont be back on valentines day
    lowerscat
    Dined on 2/14/2014
    Spent 70 including tip for two. Anod doggie bag. $8 for a 2-3 oz salad. $15 on veggie dishes, less than a whole potato and spinich!, and same with brusttle sprouts, $15, were they even organic? Served in a very "nice" but small cerial type bowl. And also 4 dollars for bread x2, second "bread was a tortia heated up for $4, most resteraunts give bread while you wait. ALSO THE SERVICE WAS OVERLY ATTENTIVE, BORDERLINE invasive, and a constant disturbance, mixed with untimly entree distribution did'nt make sense. I finally had to vibe em , that i was there to be with my gal, not constantly be interupted.
    Special Features:
    special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
  • Excellent service & excellent food.
    OpenTable Diner Since 2013VIP
    Dined on 2/11/2014
    Especially recommend the samosa trio appetizer. Service is consistently exceptional.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • if you haven't found Indian Cuisine
    DocT
    Dined on 2/8/2014
    Even if you have not found Indian Cuisine that you really enjoy, Clay Oven will change your mind. The food is the best, off any kind. If you are looking to put Indian Cuisine in your rotation, this will be it. We were dinning with friends of Indian descent and their son said "you know it's a great restaurant when all the tables are filled by all different ethnic groups, not just Indians". He meant that in a great way. Everyone will love this restaurant!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, good for groups, neighborhood gem, hot spot, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelEnergetic
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Best Indian Food in Orange County
    MABIUSVIP
    Dined on 2/6/2014
    Excellent fine Indian cuisine at its best. Every dish tonight was fantastic.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Was great find
    YumYumVIP
    Dined on 1/29/2014
    It's no wonder this restaurant has been open for well over 2 decades. This is Indian cuisine that I've not experienced before. Great care is put into the food preparation with delious and interesting g combos.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, romantic, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Great Indian food
    OpenTable Diner Since 2008
    Dined on 1/25/2014
    The food was excellent, the service was outstanding - no complaints!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • Excellent Indian food
    KTS16VIP
    Dined on 1/23/2014
    I've eaten in many Indian restaurants, both in Southern California, and in London, and Clay Oven is unique, with creative flavors beyond usual curries and sauces. The owner is gracious and informative, the service impeccable, and, while not inexpensive, worthy of a fine dining experience.
    Special Features:
    neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
  • The Best
    Mark
    Dined on 12/31/2013
    This is the best Indian food and service of any Indian restaurant in OC. The intimate setting, attention to detail and interesting, personalized and delicious food preparation is like no other. No wonder it has been around for 28 years!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Everything was delicious!
    DiandNick
    Dined on 12/19/2013
    Everything was delicious! We went for the first time there for my birthday. The owner and son were delightful. We took all their recommendations. The appetizers were a sampler of 3 different things. I had to have the Nan with rosemary and the cucumber dip, my entree was Lamb with traditional seasoning and my boyfriend had Lamb in some kind of sauce. Both were excellent. Then dessert we had a mango creme brulee, Yummy!!!!
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem, special occasion
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelQuiet
    I would recommend this to a friend.
  • Indian Influenced Dining
    BillVIP
    Dined on 12/15/2013
    The Clay Oven menu has expanded beyond traditional Indian food and now could be described as Indian influenced. The specials at a recent diner included a selection of wild meats, double cut pork chop, and Cornish game hen. Of course the traditional Indian dishes were also on the menu. The food was excellent. The service was professional and efficient. The ambiance is lacking because of its location in a strip mall but the food more than compensates. Highly recommended for an outstanding and original dining experience.
    Special Features:
    fit for foodies, neighborhood gem
    • Food
    • Ambiance
    • Service
    • Noise LevelModerate
    I would recommend this to a friend.