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Born in the COVID takeout era, tiny Spice Box opens on Broadway

(Image: Alex Garland/CHS)

A new Indian restaurant is now open for takeout on the Broadway slope between Pine and Pike, bringing electric blue color and flavorful spices to Capitol Hill.

Spice Box has a full menu of traditional Indian cuisine as well as modern Indian-fusion options, including chicken tikka wraps, aloo tikki burgers and lamb korma.

“We are still in the process of building our menu and bringing new things in — we want to see what people like or don’t,” co-owner and chef Jatin Grewal said. “So we are in a constant change of the menu over the next couple months.”

He opened the restaurant mid-October alongside fellow chefs Jagminder Singh and Navjit Singh. The business partners hope to bring new flavors and a new feeling to the space formerly home to Moti Mahal Indian Cuisine and a past location of the Taco Del Mar chain.

“We all used to drive for Uber and Lyft and, since we used to work in Capitol Hill, we used to drive by this place all the time,” Grewal said. “We always loved this location but we had this idea in our mind that we can do so much with [it].”

Grewal says they leapt at the chance to take over the space in August after learning via mutual friends that it was up for sale, and they began remodels and repainting shortly thereafter in September.

Co-owner Navjit Singh has experience running an Indian restaurant in West Seattle, Royal India Grill, before it closed around five years back and has been looking to get back into the restaurant industry ever since. Singh’s father, with three decades of experience as a chef, helped design the menu at Spice Box and will be spearheading much of the cooking.

In addition to traditional Indian cuisine and Indian style wraps and burgers, Spice Box has an expansive vegetarian section with dishes like eggplant bhartha, chana masala and mattar paneer or tofu.

The new spot joins a number of Indian restaurants on the Hill surviving business during the pandemic primarily through takeout, including longtime spot Annapurna Cafe and recently remodeled Mirch Masala a few blocks North on Broadway, as well as Indian street food spot Spice Waala and Zaika Indian-fusion restaurant.

Grewal says the pandemic hasn’t slowed opening the tiny Spice Box or its business over the first few weeks, but they are sticking to takeout for now given the restaurant’s smaller 8 to 12 person capacity. Orders can be placed over the phone or via Grubhub, DoorDash, Uber Eats or Postmates.

“We’re hoping that our food will be always good and popular among the Capitol Hill neighborhood,” Grewal said.

Spice Box is open daily from 11 AM to 11 PM at 1520 Broadway. You can learn more at

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3 months ago

Excited to try this new place! Good luck to the new owners.:)

Nick W
Nick W
3 months ago

I have to admit I had thought this was just a rebranding of Moti Mahal, which was a food safety nightmare (just look at their Yelp, let alone their ratings).

Glad to hear it’s completely new ownership – excited to give it a try!

3 months ago
Reply to  Nick W

Same, I wasn’t sure if it was a rebrand or new ownership. Glad to know it’s the latter; Moti Mahal was pretty abysmal.

3 months ago

I’ve always thought the best use of that space was for a strictly takeout/delivery business. There’s really no room in there for seating, even absent social distancing measures.