Food & Drink

A Passage to India

Another potluck, and you’re at a loss again.

Tammy the Tightwad has already volunteered the paper goods; Hildy the Homemaker is providing the main course; and Lindsay the Lush has the mixers covered. What’s left?

Impress the whole lot with a quick visit to Ambala, a new shop in Chicago’s Little India. Tempt them first with the allure of its exclusivity: With seventeen shops in England, the Chicago outpost is the first in the U.S. Then lure them in with the exotic: sweets like chewy anjeer halwa (figs, almonds, pistachios, cardamom), fudgelike kesar pak (saffron and coconut), moist gajar halwa (carrots, butter ghee, oris water, pistachios), and sticky habshi halwa (milk, wheat flour, sugar, butter ghee, cashews, almonds, pistachios, cardamom). That’ll trump a tired Jewel bakery cake.

And put you in a category all your own.

Ambala, 2741 West Devon Avenue, at California Avenue (773-764-9090).