Curry Up Now started as a small fleet of food trucks (three to be exact), and has now found roots on San Mateo's B Street.
By kitchen or curbside, Curry Up Now serves a playful spin on authentic Indian fare.
If you aren't familiar with the likes of Saag or Aloo Tikki, a creamed spinach dish or cheese stuffed potato cutlet respectively, the chalkboard menu can be a bit of trouble to navigate.
Yet, friendly staff at the register (where you order by the way, no sit-down waitstaff here) can quickly run down how and what to order.
A word to the wise: try the daily specials like "The Wierd Burritto" ($8) which, as an exception to the rule, is the one menu item staff won't explain in detail.
A strict don't ask because we won't tell rule applies, but without giving it away this writer can tell you that it's a bit of an everything-but-the-kitchen-sink dish in a suprisingly good way.
According the restaurant, the Chicken Tikka Masala Burritto ($8) and the Deconstructed Samosa are the most popular dishes.
Organic Fulton Valley chicken is used in the masala, spiced just enough to give off heat but not to overpower a sensitive palate.
The kitchen can gladly turn-up the heat dial on any dish to Desi, "a combination of Habenero and Bhoot Jolokhia (ghost peppers)" reads the menu. Just be sure to ask for yogurt on the side.
Speaking of on the side, any menu item comes with an option of a Samosa and Mango Lassi add-on ($4). Take the option, you won't be disappointed.
Though the Samosa may not be extrodinary compared to any other, it is the house sauces that make it a must-try side dish - mint cilantro and a spiced tamarind sauce.
Mango Lassi (traditional, mint, rose variations) is a mango-yogurt drink, which offers a sweet cool down to end a Curry Up Now meal.
Where: 129 S. B Street, San Mateo - Downtown. Conveniently located one-block from a public parking lot and one-block from the San Mateo Caltrain station.
When: Tuesday-Thursday: 11-2:30 & 5-9, Friday: 11-2:30 & 5-10, Sat & Sun: 11:30-10:00, Monday closed.
What to expect: Seat yourself service including a communal table. Compostable flatware sporks and cafeteria-esque food trays.
What to order: For traditionalists - Thali combo, the best of two or three worlds plus fenugreek and tumeric rice, whole wheat pan-fried flat bread, and sprouted lentil salad ($9 or $11). For serious foodies -Deconstructed Samosa ($6) or Thee Unburger ($8).