INDIAN RESTAURANTS

 

AMAYA (Location: Halkin Arcade, Motcomb Street, London SW1X 8JT) £££ 

 

Amaya is a great find, with really unique and tasty dishes located in Belgravia. The restaurant does not serve the usual starters and then main courses, instead the meals are like finger food which is designed to be shared. It is a great concept, with great vegetarian options - again a real change from the normal dishes on offer for a vegetarian. The desserts are bad too. But word of warning, the dishes aren't cheap and you are looking at between £35 - £50 per head.

 

www.amaya.biz

 

CHUTNEY MARY (Location: 535 King's Road, London SW10 0SZ) £££

 

Chutney Mary is located in Fulham. The decor is stunning, spacious and romantic particularly if you grab a seat in the conservatory and set off nicely with candles throughout the restaurant.

The food is not as unique and tasty as its sister restaurant, Amaya as it offers more traditional dishes. There are the usual paneer dishes and vegetables - but none of the dishes stood out for me. Instead I would simply go to Chutney Mary for the ambience and for a good time - although at £45 per head it is slightly steep for just an experience!  

 

www.chutneymary.com

 

IMLI (Location: 167 Wardour Street, London) ££

 

Imli offers indian tapas dishes. The usual vegetarian dishes are on offer, but are in smaller portions. The idea is that each person orders around 3 dishes each. At £4.50 - £4.95 a dish, with rice not included, you are looking to spend around £25 per head. Imli is a great venue when you are eating with mainly meat-eaters, as you're not stuck with one dish to eat the whole night but instead a variety to keep you busy.

 

www.imli.co.uk

  

MASALA ZONE (Locations: ) £ 

 

Masala Zone is from the same team behind Chutney Mary's and Amaya, but unlike the other two restaurants it is reasonably priced. The concept of the is different from your average 'Indian curry house' by offering 'thalis' i.e a selection of different dishes. For £7.95 you can choose one curry (from a choice of three including a paneer in a tangy tomato dish) and either roti or rice. The thali also consists of two vegetable dishes and a lentil curry, together with half a poppadum. For £10.95, you have a choice of two curries, raita (yoghurt and cucumber), rice, roti and half a poppadum.

The vegetables change from day to day, which is a shame as the aubergine saag was by far my favourite dish. The paneer curry and lentil dhal were only average as they both lacked spice and flavouring. But there is a large selection of vegetarian starters (hot and cold), which makes up for there being only a limited selection of curries. I recommend that you try their salted chaas to drink - perfect for a hot summers day. For £7.95 you are get to experience a range of dishes, which is great value for money and the staff are friendly too.

  

http://www.masalazone.com/

 

MINT LEAF (Location: Suffolk Place, Haymarket) £££

 

This is between £35 - £50 per head, so on the dear side, but worth a visit all the same. The food is unique but does not compromise itself in taste. There is a lot to choose from on the menu. Unlike other restaurants where the paneer dish is always the safe option, I would recommend you try the other dishes on the menu as you can't go wrong in Mint Leaf.

 

 www.mintleafrestaurant.com

 

TAMARIND (Location: 20 Queen Street, Mayfair) £££

 

I tried the lunch menu on offer at Tamarind, which offers a glass of bubbly and two or three courses for £19.95 and £22.96 respectively. There is only one choice for vegetarians, the crispy fried arborio cakes as a starter. This is a great starter, with an array of mouth watering flavours. Unfortunately the main meal does not compare in the slightest. The paneer 'kebab' option is dry and more suitable as a starter. You are provided with naan, rice, broccoli and yellow lentils as part of the deal (which you have to share with your fellow diners). As the paneer does not go with either the rice or the naan, you are left all competing with others for the yellow lentils to fill you up. All in all, the restaurant has a nice ambience and is based in a great location in Mayfair just off Curzon Street. It is expensive and therefore recommend that you do not choose from the set menu.

 

www.tamarindrestaurant.com  

 

TRISHNA (Location: 15 - 17 Blandford Street, London, W1U 3DG) ££


 
Trishna is hidden away between marble arch and Baker st, in a secluded area away from the hustle and bstle of the West End. As soon as you walk through the mint green doors of Trishna, into its green and wooden surroundings, you are hit by the uniqueness of this restaurant. The restaurant is set up like a converted house, with an array of inter-connecting rooms. It certainly doesn't feel like an Indian restuarant. 
 
We went for their lunchtime offer, which is £19.50 for a glass of Prosecco, 3 dishes and either naan or rice. Also, you are given a 'complimentary' poppadum.
 
Unfortunately the choices are limited for vegetarians. I ordered the bajias which were tasty especially when dipped into their mint chutney. For the main dishes, the only dish on offer is tikka paneer. The paneer was disappointing as it simply consisted of 2 small cubes of bland paneer. The rest of the vegetarian dishes are found in the the sides selctions. The chickpea dish consisited of a small amount of again bland chickpeas on top of purries. My favourite dish had to be the bindi, which if I had not have ordered I would have been entirely disappointed with my meal.
 
At £19.50, Trishna is good value, but would i go back? Not if I can help it...

 

www.trishnalondon.com