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Fearless Critic restaurant review
Casual restaurant

Sun–Fri 10:30am–3:00pm
Sun–Fri 5:30pm–10:00pm
Sat 10:30am–3:00pm
Sat 5:30pm–10:30pm

Features Date-friendly, veg-friendly
Credit cards Visa, MC, AmEx
Reservations Accepted


Southwest Houston
11720 W. Airport Blvd.
Houston, TX
(832) 886-4291
Great W’kana Café
Let go and let this innovative, capable kitchen have its way with you

While we wish great success for the restaurants we most love, we almost don’t want to tell you about Great W’kana. As it is now, the kitchen gets overwhelmed with just two full booths; it’s best to ask for dishes to come as they are prepared, not necessarily all at once. In this way, you can nibble on excellent house-made pickled vegetables to start (off the menu), take the time to sniff the saffron in the rice, identify each subtle spice as it unfolds in a dish with many layers—“W’kana” means “harmony,” after all. The modernizations to the cuisine are careful and deliberate, with unique attention to detail standing in for the usual creative-kitchen conceit of “more is more” (despite what the “zany!” upholstery and tropical-colored walls might otherwise say). Goat biryani is wonderful, but so is the more unusual mushroom-apricot biryani. Also confidently order anything from the tandoor oven—even white-meat chicken, which comes intensely flavorful and moist. Flatbread kathi rolls filled with either meats or vegetables in warming spices are a great portable lunch.

Often, the innovations and elegant platings are successful, like a sprout salad garnish that’s refreshing and texturally delightful; but some things are disorienting, such as avocado naan that calls to mind bad guacamole on ersatz tortillas. Still, to experience a rare form of Indian (and with your own wine, for a small corkage fee), come here—just please not on our nights.

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