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Party Size
For 2
Date
Today
Time
7:00 PM
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Booked 8 times today

Ajanta Restaurant

4.3
901 reviews
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$30 and under
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Indian
Top Tags:
  • Spicy (22)
  • Good Vegetarian Options (20)
  • Neighborhood Gem (19)
Ajanta features regional dishes from all over India, offered through a menu that changes every month. We feature organic chicken and vegetables. When possible, we use local and sustainable products. All seafood is sustainable, obtained from Monterey Fish Market. All meats are hormone- and antibiotic-free.

Ajanta has been voted best Indian restaurant in the entire San Francisco Bay Area by Zagat Guide from 2009-2014. We were also voted best Indian restaurant in the Bay Area A-List contest from 2009-2011 and 2013. In addition, we have received top reviews in several publications, including the East Bay Express, Diablo Magazine, and the Contra Costa Times. We are also included in Michelin Guide.

Our elegant dining hall features art inspired from the famous Ajanta caves in India.
Dining Style
Casual Elegant
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Cuisines
Indian, Vegetarian / Vegan, Contemporary Indian
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Hours of operation
Lunch: Daily: 11:30AM - 2:30PM
Dinner: Daily: 5:30PM - 9:00 PM
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Phone number
(510) 526-4373
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Payment options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa
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Dress code
Casual Dress
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Executive chef
Lachu Moorjani
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Neighborhood
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Cross street
The Alameda
Additional
Beer, BYO Wine, Corkage Fee, Non-Smoking, Takeout, Wine
What 901 People Are Saying
Overall ratings and reviews
Reviews can only be made by diners who have eaten at this restaurant
4.3  based on recent ratings
4.4
food
4.2
service
4.0
ambience
4.2
value
Noise · Moderate
94% of people would recommend it to a friend
  • 5
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  • 2
  • 1
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vipNope (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined 5 days ago

Reunion with friends

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AnnW (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined 7 days ago

Lamb and vegetable dishes were flavorful and not fatty or greasy.
Our server was attentive and helpful in his recommendations.
The food came quickly.

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ibgroovin (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on February 14, 2018

We had the Veggie tasting menu. We enjoyed the dishes. They were able to accommodate a dietary restriction and sub an item. Nice!

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vipBarbi (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on February 14, 2018

My husband and I went to Ajanta to celebrate Valentine's Day. I always order the Chicken Tikka Masala. I love it. I always order it Mild Spice. My husband also ordered the Chicken Tikka Masala Medium Spice. When the waiter brought us our food I said, "I ordered the Mild and my husband ordered the Medium." The waiter nodded and put down our plates. I tasted my dinner and my mouth felt like it was on fire! So, I ate some rice, drank some water and tried another bite. There was a mix-up! My husband was eating HIS meal and told me it was delicious. At last, the waiter came over and asked, "Is everything okay?" I told him about the mix-up and he said, "I'll bring you the correct dinner." I told him, "I already ate all my rice and it's too late for another dinner." So, he told us, "I will deduct the cost of that dinner..." This has never happened before. The food and the service are always very good...and I hope to return...

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on February 6, 2018

Enjoyed a delicious meal at Ajanta with friends! As always service was superb and meal delightful!

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
3.0  Dined on January 28, 2018

Service was average. Servers had to be asked several times for water. And to clear the table to make room for food plates. One server handed a dish to my wife because there was no room at the table and expected her to figure out how to make room at the table.

Lamb was excellent. Veg dishes were average.

However restaurant was very accommodating in seating us.

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Chirper (San Francisco)
3.0  Dined on January 24, 2018

I used to love Ajanta and so I'm sorry to see some of the ways the atmosphere now seems transformed. The room is lit too brightly for my taste, the tables seem crowded and noisy, and my friend and I waited at least 15 minutes before anyone took our order (they were quite busy). Once our waiter appeared, he was very friendly and service was excellent. The food is still delicious, and I may return for that reason -- but despite the beauty of the murals, the feel of the restaurant has changed and the ambience no longer is appealing. So sad!

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
3.0  Dined on January 19, 2018

Food was mediocre

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vipOpenTable Diner (Los Angeles)
3.0  Dined on January 12, 2018

Just not the same... something has changed here recently, the quality of the food is not the same as it has been in the past.

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vipAngie (New England)
2.0  Dined on January 8, 2018

It’s a real puzzle to me that this restaurant is still in business, but people put up with mediocre Indian food I guess. And calling this food mediocre is charitable. I had been there once before about a year ago and had a completely bland meal but thought it might just have been a bad night, which of course, any restaurant can have. Nope. The food this time was beyond bland moving into the territory of barely edible. If you truly like Indian food, look elsewhere.

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on January 4, 2018

Ajanta is still very good after being sold two years ago. The new owner was very cordial and explained the transition period. The food was delicious and many of the same staff members are present for continuity. My only complaint is that the lights were on very brightly. I mentioned this to the owner who said he could turn it down, but never did. It used to have a calm and subdued atmosphere...those bright lights made it feel like a diner.

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on December 31, 2017

We have been going to Ajanta for over thirty years. The food is consistently wonderful. It is our favorite restaurant for birthdays.

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Jane (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on December 31, 2017

I enjoy Ajanta for special occasion lunches, but their special New Year's Eve prix fixe dinner was spectacular.

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on December 31, 2017

Always a fine meal. New owner maintaining high expectations

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happyone (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on December 28, 2017

I have eaten here a few times over the years. The food was excellent but very crowded and noisy

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
3.0  Dined on December 28, 2017

Arrived right at our reservation and had to wait, along with others who had reservations, for over 30 minutes before we were seated.
Food and service were good, though, once we did get to a table.

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philosophyproftt (San Francisco)
3.0  Dined on December 24, 2017

This was our second visit. We ordered a kofta, a ball of veggies in a cream sauce, and an eggplant dish. Both were quite spicy although we asked for medium. We would go down a notch in future. The kofta was less creamy and delicious than malai kofta we've had elsewhere. The eggplant was yummy though a little too spicy for our taste. We also had an order of pappadum which was the best we've ever had, and an appetizer that came with the dinner, called something tikki that was very tasty. The ice cream was nothing special. The price for one dinner and one a la carte and 2 beers, with tip and tax, was $68, which is moderate. We're not in a rush to return but it's the best Indian food we've found in the area. The atmosphere is very pleasant.

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Tunk (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on December 19, 2017

Ajanta is my favorite restaurant. I love the food here. The flavors are fresh and layered in interesting ways. I don’t think there’s a better Indian place in the East Bay or the City.

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on December 18, 2017

Great food. Great service

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BethB (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on December 14, 2017

Looking forward to returning for another special occasion.

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
4.0  Dined on December 7, 2017

The food is always excellent at Ajanta. But this time the service was lacking, in two regards. First, the server or the kitchen lost our order, so as we watched others being served, no food came to our table until we flagged down a server to say that we had been waiting and watching others who came after us being served food. Second, my companion's entrée was extremely spicy although he had asked for medium spicy; at the end of the meal our original server appeared to ask him if his "spicy" entrée had been okay. So first our order was lost, and then it was incorrectly recorded. We were not offered any compensation for the incorrect order. I was disappointed for the first time at this usually excellent restaurant.

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OpenTable Diner (Boise)
3.0  Dined on December 2, 2017

The food and service were very good. However we couldn’t hear very well because the noise was so loud

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vipBarbi (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on November 30, 2017

The four of us had a lovely dinner and were very comfortable at Ajanta. The setting is very nice; the service was helpful and friendly. The food was very tasty.

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
3.0  Dined on November 19, 2017

We came in on Sunday at 6pm, and so did quite a few other customers. It took a long time to be seated and to order, and a nice waiter explained that Sundays at this time was always a terrible crush making service and kitchen super busy. The food was very good, but not exceptional. Oh well. I will give it another try some day and not give up.

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Suszun (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on November 19, 2017

We had a great meal with very tasty food! Our family enjoyed the evening at Ajanta!

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on November 5, 2017

Adjanta is a long time favorite! The food is excellent, the service is terrific and the atmosphere is warm, cozy and quietish

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OpenTable Diner (San Francisco)
2.0  Dined on November 4, 2017

1. Very poor ambience due to severely lacking ventilation (seafood preparation smell). It seemed like either the HVAC is intentionally underutilized or inadequately provisioned.
2. Poor cleanliness of cutlery.
3. Hastily executed dishes (even compared to a year ago when I last visited it, with favorable opinion at that point). Overcooked daal/lentils and veggies, undercooked mushrooms, incompletely roasted spices, missing ingredients.
4. Extremely unresponsive and forgetful young male waiter who listened to our requests for missing cutlery but just forgetfully just strolled around in a busy restaurant.
5. Public bickering amongst staff.
6. Unchecked (without auto-close spring) door that kept letting in cold air towards some of the outer tables.

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OpenTable Diner (Charleston)
5.0  Dined on October 26, 2017

I realize this restaurant is highly rated. What this review does is to convey to the superb staff that they really makes the meal complete. We took our six year old granddaughter with us. The staff and owners made her the star of the show. I can't wait to return

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OpenTable Diner (Seattle)
5.0  Dined on October 20, 2017

I lived in India and love Indian food! This place is great!!

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BillS (San Francisco)
5.0  Dined on October 18, 2017

This was in celebration of Diwali. The menu was made up of smaller portions of a number of excellent dishes we hadn't tried before. The tandoori lamb chops were exceptional.

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