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CLOSED. For years, 4920 Central Avenue in Columbia Heights has been the Twin Cities' go-to spot for south Indian food, first as Udupi, then as Nala Pak, and now as the new Amu's Madras Café. The dining room looks as dull as ever, but that keeps the focus on the stellar south Indian vegetarian cuisine prepared by Udupi's former chef. North Indian cuisine dominates the Twin Cities market, and the menu at Amu's offers several hard-to-find dishes, including dosai: giant, crisp, paper-thin crepes rolled up and often filled with a scoop of mashed vegetables. The spice blends at Amu's are good enough to distract even die-hard carnivores from missing meat. For example, the gobi Manchurian, or fried cauliflower fritters coated with a Chinese-style spicy tomato-garlic sauce, could satisfy any junk-food craving. The Hyderabad-style Bhagar 'e' Baigan curry features baby eggplant simmered to melting tenderness in a nutty gravy that tastes both new and familiar. Paneer served in a classically rich, creamy-tart butter masala achieves dish-licking status. During lunch, Amu's $8.49 buffet is a remarkable bargain, offering several hot entrée options supplemented with a potato-filled dosa, a basket of naan, and an entire table's worth of desserts.