There's a drink on House of Naan's menu called "India Meets New Haven," with Batavia arrack, Scotch, black tea and nutmeg, but that cocktail's name more accurately sums up the entire beverage program.
Co-owners Harry Singh and Kay Singh, who opened the upscale Howe Street restaurant in October, said they aimed to move beyond the conventional Indian model by introducing a concept with small, tapas-style plates alongside classic fare. They also hoped to find their place among New Haven's booming cocktail-bar scene, drawing customers with intriguing libations.
House of Naan's drinks ($10 to $13) spotlight unique syrups, infused with spices and exotic flavors. There's a twist on a mojito, with dark rum, lime and mint-fenugreek-turmeric syrup; a garam masala-spiced house Old Fashioned with Wild Turkey, and cocktails inspired by yogurt-based lassi drinks, using Bols yogurt liqueur.
The Howe Street Tea blends Bulldog gin, Darjeeling tea syrup, orange bitters, lemon and chickpea water (which serves as a vegan substitute for frothy egg whites.) Other drinks feature elements like saffron-infused Lillet Blanc, nutmeg-infused Cocchi Torino and tamarind syrup.
"It's something funky and it's something new that no one's seen," Kay Singh said.
Happy hour runs daily from 3 to 6 p.m. and again from 10 p.m. to close, with specials on select shots, beers on tap, wine pours and $5 small plates. While there's no discount on spirits, there is a bonus — a free order of naan with cocktails. More information about House of Naan's food menu here.
HOUSE OF NAAN, 65 Howe St., New Haven, is open Sunday through Thursday, 11:30 a.m. to midnight; and Friday and Saturday, 11:30 a.m. to 1 a.m. 203-562- 6226, houseofnaan.com.