For feasting beyond your wildest dreams, always opt for a slap-up meal in London's best Indian restaurants. Below you'll find cute Indian cafés as well as Michelin star restaurants who cook more than just a vindaloo. They whip up flavour sensations from all across India.
RECOMMENDED: The 100 best restaurants in London
Much of the menu at this chic bar and grill is cooked on the tawa (a thick iron plate), sigri (coal grill) or in the more familiar tandoor (hot clay oven) right in front of diners, which adds a great sense of theatre to the sparkling surrounds. The biryanis are light and aromatic, and if you’ve ever wanted to try proper Awadhi dishes, which originated in Lucknow at the height of the Mughal Empire, this is the place to go.Read more
The Panjabi sisters who own this pioneering restaurant certainly have plenty of form for this kind of thing – they also run Veeraswamy, Amaya, the Masala Zone group and Masala Grill. But they made their name with Chutney Mary some 25 years ago, when they first put refined Indian dining firmly on the map. Mary recently moved to a plush set-up in St James’s, with the huge, lavishly decorated dining room proving a fancy foil for some seriously good regional Indian cooking. Sure, it’s expensive. But this is about as good as Indian food gets in the UK.Read more
The second of three branches (the first in Covent Garden, the third in King’s Cross), this Dishoom is one of the best places to eat in Shoreditch. The interior is modelled on the Iranian cafés of Bombay, with booths and mosaic floors creating intimate nooks with a charming makeshift feel – but also with a touch of cool. Dishes on the feisty modern Indian menu are vividly described and peppered with brilliant asides and interesting facts – whether referring to superior versions of chicken tikka and lamb biryani, or lesser-known classics such as a keema Frankie. Spicy breakfasts and brunches throw a cracking curveball, too.Read more
Gymkhana models its look on Indian Colonial clubs in the days of the Raj. But if the look and feel are retro, chef Karam Sethi’s cooking is anything but. Based on regional cuisines from across the subcontinent, the cooking is modern in approach, and the spice can be serious without overwhelming the layers of big and subtle flavours that bring this menu to life. There is even a nice touch of theatricality: Indian punches come in sealed medicine bottles, with an ice-filled silvery goblet on the side.Read more
Venue says: Come and celebrate the most romantic Valentine's of 2016 with us at £60pp with Rose Passion cocktails and canapés on arrival, plus sides.
It sounds like somewhere you’d go if you were already very drunk. ‘Lesshhh go to… da… baar…. ’ And, actually, the front bar of this City Indian isn’t a bad little spot: on our visit, the drinks – mixed by the charming GM, a one-time bartender who happened to be helping out – were excellent. The plush stools were comfy. If it had been a tad busier, it would have been quite fun. The restaurant, however, is more of a mixed bag. The high-ceilinged, minimalist space – all dark tiles and sleek wood – is entirely devoid of character. It’s the dining room equivalent of someone who’s had too much botox. Yet staff could not have been more attentive, with owner and exec chef Abdul Yasseen (previously head chef at Cinnamon Kitchen) taking time out to chat to his few diners and generally press the flesh. We wish he’d spent more time in the kitchen, though: the cooking might have been a bit more consistent. Our main courses were glorious: moist on-the-bone baked rabbit, with fiery corn-kernel sauce, and an exceptional goat biryani, prepared in the hyderabadi style (slow-cooked in layers in a clay pot) combining tender meat, fluffy rice and just the right level of heat. Yet starters and puds under-delivered on their lofty descriptions. Our ‘nanza’ (an Indian pizza) promised a topping of ‘paneer bhurji’ (spiced, crumbled paneer), ‘smoked chilli’ and ‘oven dried tomato’, but turned out to be a pedestrian paneer flatbread dominated by slices of semi-raw red onion. A chocolate ‘brick’ in a de