Actor opening Indian-Mexican restaurant downtown

DOWNEY - Veteran actor and stuntman Deep Roy still remembers the first time he tried celebrity chef Baba Ji's cooking."Baba and I met long, long ago. When I tasted his food -- I loved it," said Roy who's starred in dozens of Hollywood films, most notably as the Oompa Loompas in the 2005 hit "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory." "I'm so happy that myself and Baba have found a nice, nice place in Downey for one of the best Indian-Mexican places Downey will ever see." Hoping to capitalize on the growing nightlife springing up in Downtown Downey, Roy's Indian-Mexican fusion restaurant Cowboys and Turbans will open its next location this Saturday at the Downey Gateway food court. Cowboys and Turbans, located at 8240 Firestone Blvd., replaces Fresh Cutt Carving Grill, which closed unexpectedly in October. "It's going to be great, I'm looking forward to this," said Roy, who is partnering with Ji, manager of the dine-in restaurant. "I'm a sleepy partner, but not that sleepy. I'll be there as often as I can." While slightly nervous about the location at first, Roy said Ji convinced him Downey was the right place for the partners' second restaurant. "I used to be scared, but Baba showed me the location -- we're on a restuarant row -- and the people are nice, Downey is an up and coming area," Roy said. "We want to bring a classy place where people can sit and eat drink wine or have a beer then eat some good food." Along with some traditional Indian cuisine, Cowboys and Turbans will serve cultural combinations including masala fires, lamb tacos, mango chicken tikka pizza, and tofu malasa burritos. "Indian food has a lot of onion, garlic and cilantro -- it goes along with Mexican food really well," said Roy, who says the name ties Indian imagery in with American and Mexican themes. "Turbans are worn by Indians, Hindus and sheikhs...cowboys makes you think of Texas, New Mexico -- but we're all Americans that live in a wonderful country." Roy continued: "It's a great name, a great concept, and good quality food." According to Ji, the restaurant will officially open this Saturday at 5 p.m. Roy says he'll be present to meet guests and introduce the food to this new audience. "We want to make the Downey people feel welcomed," Roy said. "I will be there to greet the people -- this is not fast food, it's healthy food in a happy atmosphere."

********** Published: Nov. 21, 2013 - Volume 12 - Issue 32