About Cholanad Restaurant and Bar

Cholanad Team is focused on delivering the South Indian culinary experience in a world class style. We are aspiring to become a world leader in ethnic cuisine experience that includes food, ambiance and service.

308 West Franklin Street
Chapel Hill, NC 27516
View Larger Map

Dining Style:
Fine Dining

Cuisines:
South Indian, Seafood, International

Hours of Operation:
Lunch: Mon - Sun 11:30 - 2:30


Dinner: Sun - Thur 5 - 9:30


Fri - Sat 5 - 11pm

Cross Street:
Mallette St

Dress Code:
Casual Dress

Price Range:
$30 and under

Payment Options
AMEX, Discover, MasterCard, Visa

Phone Number:
(800) 246-5262

Website:
http://www.cholanad.com/

Parking Details:
Limited parking located on premises. Chapel Hill downtown valet parking tickets are validated
free of charge for CholaNad customers.

FREE Valet parking for Cholanad Customers opposite to Carolina Ale House
in Franklin Street

Private Party Facilities:
Available Private dining on Advanced booking. We provide custom menus for groups of more than 20 guests.

Private Party Contact:
Kumar: (800) 246-5262

Additional:
Bar/Lounge, Beer, Full Bar, Gluten-free Menu, Late Night, Wheelchair Access

Cholanad Restaurant and Bar Ratings and Reviews

5
4
3
2
1

4.3

Overall Rating

based on recent ratings
food

4.5

service

4.0

ambience

4.2

value

4.1

Noise

Quiet

90% would recommend it to a friend

Good for a Date (5)
Good Vegetarian Options (5)
Authentic (4)
See All
Great for Lunch (4)
Good for Birthdays (3)
Creative Cuisine (3)
Neighborhood Gem (3)
Spicy (3)
Worth the Drive (2)
Good for Anniversaries (1)
Business Meals (1)
Comfort Food (1)
Vegan (1)
Fit for Foodies (1)
Good for Groups (1)
Happy Hour (1)
Healthy (1)
Great for Outdoor Dining (1)
Pre/post Theatre (1)
Quiet Conversation (1)
Romantic (1)
Special Occasion (1)
Sunday Lunch (1)
Cozy (1)
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246 reviews
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 (Raleigh)·Dined on November 24, 2017

I would definitely go back. The food was good and the price was reasonable. The menu is extensive. I had shrimp tikka Marsala and wish there were more shrimp but the flavor was great. Went for my birthday and they gave me a complimentary glass of champagne!!

Tags: Authentic
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food4
ambience3
service4
value5

 
·Dined on November 9, 2017

Not the best Indian food in the area. Basmati was not particularly aromatic. Lamb saag lacked depth of flavor.

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food3
ambience4
service4
value3

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on November 4, 2017

We were first seated in the far back with no other patrons and the waiter must not have been told we were there due to the long wait to see anyone come with water or to take a drink order. We had to get up and go to the main dining area, ask to be seated there, then we were waited on. The waiter seemed overwhelmed.
However, the food was amazing and we enjoyed the meal and wine.

Tags: Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience3
service3
value4

 
·Dined on October 22, 2017

This was my first experience with Indian cuisine...the waiter was very patient in explaining the different dishes. I was amazed and delighted at the choices and how delicious everything was!

Tags: Great for Lunch, Worth the Drive
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on October 21, 2017

The food was authentic and fantastic. We will be back.

Tags: Spicy, Good for Birthdays, Business Meals
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

 
·Dined on October 14, 2017

We were visiting Chapel Hill where Cholanad is located and found them on Open Table. And what a find it was! We scored an outdoor table (there are only a few) on an evening that was perfect for outdoor dining. The southern Indian fare was really good and there was plenty to share. My wife and daughter were especially fond of the Naan and I wiped out the Chettinad Chicken Curry, a spicy curry chicken dish. Easily a new favorite for me. We will be back on our next visit!

Tags: Great for Outdoor Dining, Neighborhood Gem, Good for Birthdays, Vegan, Fit for Foodies, Good for a Date, Pre/post Theatre
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food5
ambience5
service4
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on October 6, 2017

Th meal started in an odd way as the restaurant could find no record of our opentable reservation. We did get seated, however. Then today opentable asks for a review so somehow the restaurant did indicate we had dined there. I'm not sure how that could work.Still, Iove the food, especially the baby eggplant. This is one of their hottest dishes and is excellent. The dhosa was quite bland, just right for dipping in the hot sauce that comes with the eggplant.

Tags: Authentic, Creative Cuisine, Good Vegetarian Options
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on September 30, 2017

We met some friends here, one of whom is Indian. We were all so thrilled with the dishes. They were well spiced, interesting and delicious. Service was very good. I would strongly recommend getting several of the small appetizer plates so you can try more dishes.

Tags: Cozy, Good for a Date
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on September 24, 2017

This was the second time I'd been to Cholanad and the food has been excellent. Everything we ordered had great flavor and tasted unique (not always the case at Indian restaurants). Half priced bottles of wine on Sundays are a great perk. Will definitely keep going back.

Tags: Good for a Date, Good Vegetarian Options
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on September 23, 2017

In all honesty I've been there a few time and typically enjoyed the experience. However, this past trip the service was really poor. It took over 15 minutes just to order our drinks (the place was not busy) and another 30 for them to actually arrive. If this was a specialty cocktail maybe I could understand, but we ordered beers!! When the food arrived they brought all of the meals (5 other people) except mine. I waited another 10 minutes while the rest of the table ate until my meal came. You would think I would have learned my lesson at this point, but I didn't and I ordered a second beer. When it arrived 15 minutes later (quite an improvement from the first round) it was a significantly smaller pour than the first (I ordered the same beer). When I pointed it out to the server she insisted the first round should have been the smaller glasses, but there was lipstick all on the rim so she made the bartender pour it in a different glass. Sounds like an odd explanation, but so be it. Anyway, while its been fine in the past the food isn't good enough to return considering the service we received.

1 person found this review helpful.
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food3
ambience2
service1
value2

 
·Dined on September 10, 2017

One of the best restaurants I have ever been to. We ordered three dishes and all of them were delicious. Best Indian food at Chapel Hill😃.

Tags: Comfort Food, Healthy, Good for a Date, Sunday Lunch, Great for Lunch
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on August 17, 2017

Cholanad is always great. The vegetable biryani is a must have. The malai kofta and their dosas are great. My only complaint is how small the tables are relative to the dishes. It drives us nuts to have the problem of how to accommodate our food on the table. We have taken to requesting a larger table than our party when making the reservation. Other than that, love the food and highly recommend it.

Tags: Business Meals, Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on August 4, 2017

The best Indian food in the Triangle with together with excellent service and quiet ambience (we sat outside but it was quiet inside too) makes for a wonderful evening.

Tags: Worth the Drive, Good Vegetarian Options, Fit for Foodies, Quiet Conversation, Vegan, Great Beer, Authentic
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Memphis)·Dined on July 29, 2017

Food was delicious but service was awful. We had to go the hostess and ask who our waiter/waitress was as we had been seated at our table for 15+ minutes-and no one had come by to even greet us/take drink orders-and the place was not crowded. Food came out at various times-where one person would be completely done with their meal-while another hadn't even been served an entree. When I made the reservation-I had mentioned we were there to celebrate a special birthday-no wishes to the birthday guest or even an acknowledgement.

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food4
ambience4
service2
value4

 
·Dined on July 27, 2017

Great Indian food with gluten free options clearly marked. Great service and lovely decor as well.

Tags: Special Occasion, Vegan, Good for a Date, Cozy, Authentic, Gluten Free Options
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on July 22, 2017

Best Indian food in the area

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on July 2, 2017

Excellent food and service. Southern Indian was something different.

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food5
ambience4
service5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on June 19, 2017

This is my third time, maybe fourth, going to Cholanad. I love the food. It is always delicious Indian food. Normally, it is very crowded, but we got in an early dinner before the crowd. The service was great as well. My only complaint is that the bar was not up to snuff. The drinks we ordered were not done well and they were out of an ethnic beer that we looked forward to having. In the past, the bar has not been an issue, so this may have just been a fluke. Overall, it's a great place and I love the food, so I will be back!

Tags: Gluten Free Options, Good for Birthdays, Vegan, Bar Seating, Good for a Date, Creative Cuisine, Good Vegetarian Options, Spicy, Hot Spot, Authentic
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food4
ambience3
service3
value2

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on June 9, 2017

We have been to Cholanad about seven times. The last time I went, I was disappointed because my appetizer came out luke warm instead of hot. This really irks me--I like hot food hot! We took another couple there this past weekend, and had the same experience. Three appetizers came out just barely warm. I asked to waiter to please make sure the chicken tikka masala came out hot! The other couple ordered it as well. One came out hot and the other just warm. The waiter did nothing to remedy this, like go get a bowl of hotter sauce. The service was horrible overall. I've never had a problem before. This was a new blond guy who doesn't understand customer service at all!

Tags: Creative Cuisine
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food3
ambience4
service1
value4

vip
 (San Francisco)·Dined on May 30, 2017

The food isn't as good as it once was, but still a pretty good place for grabbing some nice South Indian and fusion food

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food3
ambience3
service3
value3

 
 (Charleston)·Dined on May 13, 2017

Great restaurant for Indian food we have returned many times and it is consistently great

Tags: Good Vegetarian Options, Fit for Foodies, Neighborhood Gem
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Charlotte)·Dined on May 13, 2017

Super busy night because of graduation, but our group were all so pleased with this choice. Food and choices were excellent, everything tasted so fresh. Great service. We will definitely return to this restaurant.

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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on May 13, 2017

eat at this restaurant frequently. Always great service and food!!

Tags: Special Occasion, Casual, Business Meals, Good for Groups, Creative Cuisine, Good for a Date, Fit for Foodies
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Wilmington)·Dined on April 23, 2017

This restaurant seemed quite un-organized.
The staff took orders on a phone device and
spent more time looking for the dishes we ordered on it than
engaging us. We were never offered any beverages. (at all)
I don't even think our waitress knew what we looked like because
she never looked up at us. :(
Our appetizer never showed up and Our food came out at
separate times.
The food was tasty, but bad service will kill a whole experience.
I wish I could have a bright side, the manager never even came out to apologize or
if the rest of the dinner went well.

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food3
ambience3
service2
value3

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 22, 2017

The food at Cholonad is outstanding. Great value, fantastic vegetarian and meat options. On this particular evening, I think our server may have been a bit unexperienced. She was very kind and accommodating, but one of the people dining with us didn't get the meal he ordered - he didn't get a meal at all. When the server discovered her error, she quickly apologized and offered to put the order in, but my friend declined as there was enough food without the additional entree. No compensation was offered for the inconvenience & in my opinion something should have been offered.

Tags: Special Occasion, Fun, Good for Groups, Good for a Date, Great for Lunch, Good Vegetarian Options
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food5
ambience3
service2
value4

 
 (Philadelphia)·Dined on April 14, 2017

Excellent food. Dishes had the right flavoring. Good broad choices. Right spice level. Spring Dosa outstanding. Service staff appeared to be overwhelmed. Great place.

Tags: Good Vegetarian Options
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food5
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 14, 2017

While the waiter was nice and helpful in ordering, the service was ridiculously slow. We waited long periods of time just to order and one drink came well after all the others were served. Everything just took way too much time. The food was good, not great. Ambience is OK.

Tags: Casual
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food4
ambience3
service2
value4

 
 (San Francisco)·Dined on April 14, 2017

Love the parotta bread, great serving style. Appam is not there when ever we try to order

Tags: Comfort Food, Worth the Drive, Special Occasion
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food4
ambience4
service5
value4

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 7, 2017

Service was slow and food was very costly but it was tasty and ambiance was good. Nice location

Tags: Good Vegetarian Options, Good for a Date
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food4
ambience4
service3
value3

vip
 (Seattle)·Dined on April 6, 2017

Baby eggplant is savory and tasty. The appetizer mini samosas w chickpeas and three sauces is wonderful. Shrimp tikki masala was not bad.

Tags: Gluten Free Options, Casual, Vibrant Bar Scene
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on April 2, 2017

Great food and service... Drinks took a very long time, however. We were told that the bartender had something else to do. Apology accepted, because the food is great - and so was Cole, our waiter.

Tags: Great for Lunch, Bar Seating, Good Vegetarian Options, Hot Spot, Spicy, Handcrafted Cocktails, Creative Cuisine, Business Meals, Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Healthy, Great for Outdoor Dining, Authentic
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food5
ambience4
service5
value4

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on March 25, 2017

This was my first visit to Cholanad's. Pros: It does have a parking lot. The lamb chops are delicious and the chicken tikka masala is tasty. Cons: we ordered the Saag but unbeknownst to us, it was pureed. Not quite what we were expecting. The restaurant is somewhat small but quaint as they made good use of the space.

Tags: Creative Cuisine, Fit for Foodies
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food4
ambience3
service3
value4

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on March 18, 2017

The food was excellent and I don't give those kudos very often. We had a variety of dishes and enjoyed each. The service and recommendations our waitress gave us were spot on as this was our first visit. Highly recommend you make a trip to this restaurant.

Tags: Outstanding Value, Authentic, Good Vegetarian Options
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on March 5, 2017

I have brought various friends to this restaurant, and all have commented on the excellent food. I have never been disappointed by a meal at Cholanad!

Tags: Fit for Foodies, Good for Groups, Gluten Free Options, Creative Cuisine
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food5
ambience4
service5
value5

 
 (Raleigh)·Dined on March 3, 2017

Cholanad is hands down my favorite restaurant in Chapel Hill. Its innovative Indian cuisine is delicious and affordable. Every meal we've had here has been top notch!

Tags: Disabled Access, Comfort Food, Healthy, Good for Anniversaries, Worth the Drive, Business Meals, Authentic, Fit for Foodies, Good Vegetarian Options, Quiet Conversation, Good for a Date, Great for Lunch, Special Occasion, Good for Birthdays, Outstanding Value, Casual, Creative Cuisine, Neighborhood Gem
Was this review useful to you?Yes·No·
food5
ambience4
service4
value5

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on February 27, 2017

I took friends here for first time and they loved it. The menu has lots of great and unique options. Wonderful flavors!

Tags: Spicy, Pre/post Theatre, Authentic
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food4
ambience4
service4
value4

vip
 (Las Vegas)·Dined on February 18, 2017

We hadn't been to Cholonad for a few years and it was significantly better this time than I remember it being then. It was a busy Saturday evening but the service and food were very good and the cost was comparatively inexpensive. Good Indian food with many vegetarian options.

Tags: Spicy, Good Vegetarian Options
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food4
ambience3
service4
value4

 
 (Charleston)·Dined on February 18, 2017

The chicken tikka masala and the naan were fabulous! The Thali had highs and lows. Some was delicious and others not so much. I'd likely not order that again. The service was a little inconsistent, but they were training a new person. All and all it was a great meal.

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food4
ambience4
service3
value4

 
 (Miami)·Dined on February 17, 2017

Excellent food!!

Tags: Good for Groups, Handcrafted Cocktails, Good for Anniversaries
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food5
ambience5
service5
value5

vip
 (Raleigh)·Dined on February 17, 2017

Someone in our party said that everything tasted the same. Having eaten here many times before I don't agree, but I now realize that it is possible to order poorly.

The dosa are fantastic.

Tags: Tapas, People Watching, Authentic, Casual, Business Meals, Handcrafted Cocktails, Fit for Foodies
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food4
ambience4
service2
value4

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