‘We will wait as long as it takes,’ restaurateur says on opening new location downtown that will serve dad’s authentic recipes

Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.
Caption
Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

“We are trying to keep it as close to home cooking as possible,” owner said. “We don’t Americanize by any means.”

If things had gone as planned, Harkinder "AJ" Singh would be opening his family's third restaurant, this one in downtown Dayton this summer.

Singh has long had his eye on the Gem City for an Indian restaurant, having scouted locations downtown and near the University of Dayton.

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He signed a lease in February or March for restaurant space in the CareSource building downtown overlooking Day Air Ballpark, the home of the Dayton Dragons. Plans call for the space to have a patio.

Then the coronavirus pandemic hit and threw a wrench in society’s plans.

Caption
Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.
Caption
Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

Singh says he will still open a second location of Gulzar’s Indian Cuisine, a eatery named for his grandfather, but it may not happen until January or February.

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“We are going to make sure everything is over before I open. I want to open up for full dining,” he said. “We will wait as long as it takes. No rush. Health is more important for my employees and my family.”

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Singh said his father, Paramjeet Singh, who is known to many simply as "Mr. Singh," opened Taj Mahal Indian Cuisine about 20 years ago in Cincinnati.

Caption
Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.
Caption
Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

AJ Singh opened Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Richmond, Ind., about five years ago.

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Singh said the Dayton restaurant will employee 10 to 15 people. 

The exact location and design of the Dayton location has not been determined, but Singh said it will serve his father’s authentic north Indian recipes.

“We are trying to keep it as close to home cooking as possible,” Singh said. “We don’t Americanize  by any means.”

Caption
Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.
Caption
Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

The restaurant will feature a lunch buffet and fine dining in the evening with a long line of dishes, including a range of Indian breads, butter chicken, lamb and shrimp curry, saag paneer, aloo vindaloo, assorted varieties of the rice dish biryani and clay oven dishes such as chicken tikka and tandoori shrimp.

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“We are going to do delivery. We are going to do lunch boxes, pretty much the whole deal for downtown,” he said.

Caption
Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.
Caption
Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

Singh said that CareSource has been understanding about the current climate the world faces and its impact on his family’s business.

“Hopefully when everything is over, they will start their construction and we will start ours,” he said.

Caption
Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.
Caption
Harkinder “AJ” Singh, the owner of Gulzar's Indian Cuisine in Indiana, plans to open a restaurant with that same name in downtown Dayton.

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

Credit: Gulzar's Indian Cuisine

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