Now Open: Copper Kettle in Tempe (With a Side of Family Drama)
If you've been in the Valley for more than a minute and like Indian or Pakistani food, then it's likely you're familiar with the name Copper Kettle. The restaurant has been around at various locations since 1998, most recently at 1964 North Alma School Road in Chandler.
Lauren Saria The new Copper Kettle in Tempe.
But as of three weeks ago, Copper Kettle moved to a new location at 1250 East Apache Boulevard in Tempe. That puts the restaurant's new home just up the street from Curry Corner, the Indo-Pak restaurant of Copper Kettle owner Syed Abbas' sister, Farah Kahlid. As you can imagine, the close proximity is apparently causing some drama within the family.
Kahlid originally came to United States in 1997 to help her brother open Copper Kettle in Mesa. She later would also help open Copper Kettle Express in Tempe. She took over the second restaurant in 2004 and then opened her own place, Curry Corner, after Copper Kettle Express shuttered in 2010. Kahlid's Curry Corner was recently featured on the 14th season of Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive Ins, and Dives.
Since the original location Copper Kettle closed, there have been several iterations of Abbas' restaurant, including Copper Kettle Express in Tempe. But business at the most recent Chandler location was getting slow, says Abbas, which caused him to decide to move into the new Tempe spot. The restaurant is in the same strip mall as Pita Jungle. Abbas says he hopes to draw business from students at ASU's Tempe campus.
Kahlid's son Omar tell us the move has strained family relations and that he and his mother "aren't really speaking" to his uncle. But Abbas says he's has no issues with his sister and that he doesn't think his restaurant will hurt business at Curry Corner.
"I am the one who started this business," Abbas says. "If I [didn't] open here, someone else could have."
As far as the two restaurants' menus, Abbas says they're "pretty different" and that his restaurant, Copper Kettle, offers "more variety." The Copper Kettle menu features categories such as Tandoori Grill, Balti House, and Punjabi Delights. Like Curry Corner, Copper Kettle offers dine-in and takeout food.
On the upside, Tempe is now home to two of the Valley's best Indo-Pak restaurants. It's just too bad we can't spread out the delicious, curried love.