Lovely place to meet for lunch, great food, mix of traditional and modern. Wonderful vibe and great service. Awesome selections of tea.
Time Out rating:
Time Out says
Posted: Tue Feb 4 2014
A swish Bombay brasserie in the style of the old post-colonial 'Irani cafés' of Bombay, Dishoom is filled with retro design features: whirring ceiling fans, low-level lighting and walls adorned with vintage Indian magazine advertising. The look is certainly distinctive, but the effect can be so slick when compared to the real thing that the venue can feel rather soulless and corporate. This doesn’t stop the design-conscious and Indophile thronging here through the day, from breakfast (for sausage nan rolls with chilli jam) to dinner (for the stir-fries and tandoori grills). The main attraction though is the menu, loosely styled on Irani café food with birianis, bhel (crunchy puffed rice with tangy tamarind chutney) and even pau bhaji (toasted white bread rolls with a spicy vegetable stew as a filling). Our black dal was exemplary, and the lamb biriani suitably moist. We particuarly like the endlessly refilled house chai (Indian-style tea), but the other drinks are interesting too – excellent lassi concoctions, good wines by the glass, even the soft drinks Limca and Thums Up in glass bottles imported from Mumbai. Queues are common in the evening (bookings are taken for breakfast and lunch, but only for groups at dinner), though the basement bar helps make the wait more than bearable.
Dishoom 12 Upper St Martin's Lane
- Venue phone:
020 7420 9320
- Venue website:
- Opening hours:
Meals served 8am-11pm Mon-Thur; 8am-midnight Fri; 9am-midnight Sat; 9am-11pm Sun
Tube: Leicester Square or Covent Garden tube
Main courses £1.70-£11.50
- 12 Upper St Martin's Lane
- 020 7420 9320
- 12 Upper St Martin's Lane
Average User Rating
4.1 / 5
- 5 star:47
- 4 star:15
- 3 star:0
- 2 star:6
- 1 star:8
I was extremely impressed by our meal. It was a celebration for my father's birthday and we had not been to Dishoom before so I wasn't sure what to expect.However it was perfect from start to finish.
The waiter was very helpful with suggestions for what to order. He suggested the perfect combination of foods and just the right amount.
He was attentive without being intrusive.
The food was delicious. And we loved our ginger beer drinks too.
The lavatories were clean and well maintained.
The restaurant had a nice decor and busy lively atmosphere.
Thoroughly pleased and hoping to return when we get the chance!
The service is excellent warm and welcoming. The food was good, I had the okra fries which were delicious the spicy lamb dish and house black dhal. Overall a good experience especially as the prices too were reasonable for a central London location which had a good ambiance. The place was buzzing on a week day evening. The decor is a step up from the usually Indian Restaurant - in chic black and white with ceiling fans it was smart and contemporary. Definitely a place to take guests to. My only reservation was that the spicy was rather mild perhaps an extra spicy dish could be included on the menu for us chillie lovers!
I've been several times now and always really enjoyed it. The food is delicious and quite varied so you can discover something new each time, though I always have the house black dhal as well because it is outstanding! The service is incredibly fast and very friendly. Upstairs is bright airy and lively, though the downstairs booths are good for groups as a bit quieter for conversation.
I loved the idea of a Bombay Café, but this did not live up to the hype. Despite having made a reservation, we waited a long time for our table. The location is great, not far from Leicester Square and Covent Garden, but the food just isn't good enough and this in a city that isn't short of great Indian food. Dishoom is clearly a marketing "concept" with gimmicky food. If you love Indian food, you will be disappointed.
I am a regular diner at Dishoom and can honestly say that it has never let me down. The Black daal is fabulous, but the spicy lamb chops are possibly one of the best things you will ever eat, unless you are vegetarian, of course, in which case there is still plenty to gorge on. I love the place.
Bacon & egg naan will turn any morning around. Sometimes, I even get two. They'll sometimes give you chai on the house while you wait. The service is always super friendly and excellent.
The nicest Indian food I have tasted. The place is an excellent place for a date or a group and the food is ALL amazing. All fresh and tasty. The staff are all lovely too
It's rare for the user ratings on Time Out to exceed the official review, and it's a more reliable indicator than any other that this place is great: excellent food, good service, the kind of place that disappoints trend seekers but delights those of us just looking to have a fine meal.
Booked Dishoom for our team Christmas lunch, was a brilliant choice and made a brilliant change from the usual Turkey dinners and party hats (although these were still included). The food was plentiful and very tasty with lots of different choices to be had so the whole team were satisfied. The staff were also brilliant. Would highly recommend.
We had a really lovely evening at Dishoom Covent Garden - pre-theatre. The food was delicious, the service was very good, and there was a great atmosphere. My husband, his parents and I all thoroughly enjoyed it so thank you. We will definitely be back soon and I recommend Dishoom to anyone who is looking for great quality food in a fun and quirky environment - and it's not too expensive, very reasonable☺
I strongly recommend Dishoom on the basis of their Bacon Naan Rolls alone! Incredibly authentic food, amazing atmosphere and very friendly, attentive staff. Go, you will not be disappointed!
I had lunch here on 6th December with a group of friends as a X-mas get together. The lunch was great, atmosphere fantastic in the booth downstairs, and the volume of food was spot on. The bottled beer was a little expensive, but it didn’t stop us drinking a large number of them and didn’t detract from a great experience. We’ll go again and I will be raving about Dishoom to work colleagues and friends, encouraging them to eat there in the future.
The food is splendid, the service fast and extremely cheerful (but they don't rush you) and the ambience is wonderful. There is a buzz about the place which will lift you after a long day and/or get you ready for the evening ahead. Great for groups too.
I would definately recommend this restaurant! The service was great, the waiter was very knowledgeable and helpful with our choices and explaining the menu. Everything we ordered was delicious!! The atmosphere inside the Covent Garden Branch was great, everyone was very friendly and food was served quick. Would go again!
Genuinely, the most authentic tasting Indian food I have ever had in England! The service was excellent. Although the wait outside was almost an hour, we were served hot chai which was delicious. I cannot emphasize how good the food was! I ordered the chicken berry brittania, which was to die for. It was an excellent portion to share with my friends. We also ordered the chicken tikka roll, which was just so tasty. And the drinks! The waitress was so competent, and helped me select the perfect drink. The whole experience was amazing despite the long wait. It is well worth it! Everyone should go, you will not regret it!!
Amazing food, service and atmosphere. Visited the Covent Garden location, made a 5:15pm reservation prior to a 7:30pm show (they don't take reservations after 5:30pm). LOVED the food, especially the black dahl, the grilled tikka chicken and the slaw. I am desperate to have them open a location in Manhattan ... can't wait to return during my next visit to London. This is a MUST VISIT restaurant. Very reasonable as well.
Best Indian food I have had in a long time - very authentic and extremely tasty. Great décor, great service and an all round fantastic lunch. Will definitely be back, very soon.
We had a lovely time at Dishoom Covent Garden last week. I had been a couple of times before but it has become so popular and without table booking a wait is inevitable. We waited rather longer than the predicted 25 minutes, however once we pointed this out we were soon seated with profuse apologies. The staff were unfailing gracious , the food sensational as always. I have dined at Chowpatty beach and can testify to the authenticity of the Pau Bhaji, in addition the slaw and the black lentils were delicious , a good twist on indian staples. As I vegetarian I am always happy to eat lentils but get tired of the usual Tarka Dhal or Dhal Makhani that are normally offered on Indian and Nepalese menus. The one drawback is as mentioned on other reviews, the acoustics, it is difficult to hold a conversation, we just tucked in with grunts of approval instead. The staff on the go at all times still mnaged to be cheerful , efficient and concerened that we ate well and chose appropriately. It would be five stars if were not for the din.
portions are small. chai was nice, mango lassi was so great, but lamb grill was SOOOOO chewy. I loved the dhal, it did not need extra seasoning.
Been there both for breakfast and for dinner. Their bacon naan is a pretty incredible and surprising experience, and their dinner menu is not too shabby either. I adore the silky texture of their dhal
Dishoon is fantastic. We went for a mid-week breakfast and enjoyed it so much that we came back for lunch as well. We booked breakfast but there really was no need, there was plenty of space. I had egg naan, which was a perfect balance of egg and bread and had delicious chilli chutney and coriander and had a chai tea as well, that was sweet, milky and aromatic. For lunch I had a tasty biryani. Overall what impressed me was the quality of the food. I have lived in London over 10 years and the Leicester Square areas has always been full tourist focussed tat that never enticed me back for repeat business. Dishoon is part of the London foodie revolution that has transformed eating over the past few years into an interesting, tasty, good quality, stylish and reasonably priced experience. It is refreshing to have an Indian as part of that - Indian food has been part of the British culture for some time, but like Chinese, has more often than not failed to evolve to higher quality. Dishoon does that, and is a day round viable option - places like Chowki at Piccadilly Circus I would have only ever gone to for an evening meal. Dishoon, takes Indian food to the breakfast and lunch market as well. The staff were friendly and welcoming and I will certainly be heading back.
Went for breakfast naan; unable to decide between bacon or egg, they very kindly put both in the same naan. I've never had such a good quality bread - soft, just chewy enough, and the bacon was tasty, substantial, and worked a treat with the gently flavoured coriander and chilli filling. Would recommend it - especially for the bargain £3.50 odd.
I always have a great experience at Dishoom in Covent Garden. Service is always fantastic and the food is amazing. Authentic Indian food, if you want a korma or a tikka masala this isn't the place for you. If you want delicious prawns, minced lamb and biryani's then head here. The lassi with fennel is delicious. The only down-side is you can't book for less than 6 people after 6pm, so expect at least a 30 minute wait. Worth it though.
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As someone who's lived in Mumbai all their life, grown up with those typical street food and Irani cafe flavours, I would always find something missing when I'd go out for Indian food in London. And then I found Dishoom. My, my. What's not to love about this place? (Probably the pice, because, well, it will eat into your student budget) but after having craved for Vada Pau and Bhel for more than 10 months, I would have probably paid more. Getting our typical Indian flavours right is no mean feat - I sometimes struggle with it too. But Dishoom did not let me down one bit. I went with a bunch of people and we all ordered a bunch of different things - Bhel, Vada Pau, Pau Bhaji, Kathi Roll, Fried Okra, Far Far, Chilli Cheese Toast, Paneer Tikka Roll and obviously a hell of a lot of drinks - Thums Up (Indian cola), Limca (Indian fizzy lemonade brand), Rose and Cardamom lassi, Bhaang Lassi, Bombay Pimms (an amazing take on Pimms). Once again, I'm going to say - I wasn't let down. Indian food choices for me are made worse because I'm a vegetarian. Although it's very easy to find vegetarian choices of practically everything in Bombay, it becomes a little hard here. Nope. No complaints at Dishoom. Enough veggie choices and this trip was, therefore, a success. I'd been told that I should go to Dishoom when I'm feeling homesick the most. Because otherwise it's just going to make me feel worse. Boy, was that right. (I mean, I was pretty miserable and going to Dishoom did wonders to my mood!) The highlight of the trip were the toilets here. The loos have a lot of typical Indian products arranged in a shelf in the cubicles. They're SO very typically Indian that many might not even be aware of their existence but I was so amused! And then the mirrors in the toilet (especially the ones towards the ceiling) had bindis (adhesive round stickers of sort that are worn on the forehead between the eyes by the women) stuck on the corners. This is SUCH a typical Indian practice - you'll find a mirror with bindis stuck in a corner in almost every Indian home since it's so easy to access the bindis while you're getting dressed. If you want a typical Bombay experience, pay attention to the decor (it is gorgeously Bombay) and take some time to look at the posters stuck all over. Although the alcoholic drinks are great, do order the non-alcoholic ones. You aren't going to get them outside of India anywhere else. And finally, order WHATEVER you feel like from the menu. It's all awesome. And at the end of the trip, do sneak away the menu (the way I did) and bring a piece of Bombay back home with you.
It was a great evening, response for reservations through email where fast & swift. The food was great & fast & service where also on point. It stood out & I recognised that each staff member made eye contact & said hello, & where friendly & welcoming. This is very much forgotten at some places, but is key to service. It's good to know the Dishoom team recognise & understand this. I will definitely be coming back & have already recommended your place to a few friends as a chosen venue to dine in Covent Garden.
We ate here for lunch in late June. Food was delicious and creative. Food did not taste heavy and oily as is often the case with Indian cuisine. Dishes like steamed grouper in banana leaf were a big surprise and superb. Chicken curry was deeply flavorful yet not over spiced. Service was excellent. A great and memorable meal. We will be back every time we go to London and only wish Dishoom would open an outpost in New York!
Loved loved loved the breakfast at Dishoom! I have been searching for a great breakfast find and this really will be hard to beat. I highly recommend.
Why breakfast at Dishoom is definitely worth getting out of bed early for http://www.myhiddengems.co.uk/2012/01/dishoom-bombay-cafe-london/
I had been for lunch, but this was the first time for myself in the evening and with a group of friends. The food was fantasitc, the waiters were helpful, friendly, gave great recommendations. The two hour slot was plenty of time. We will definitely return.
I’d been before so knew what to expect, but it was the first time for my groups of friends. They loved the décor and especially the food, really enjoying the twists on traditional breakfast fayre. The breakfast lassis were very much enjoyed too. We’ll certainly be back!
Dishoom is just fantastic on every level. Fabulous food, great staff, wonderful ambiance. I love it!!
I have visited numerous times now and have had great meals and great service each time. I have come back and booked a couple of large dinners as well. They are very accommodating for big groups while keeping that cozy yet modern atmosphere. They can accommodate walk ins and reservations for larger groups so it works perfectly, not to mention their central location. The food and drinks are very well done! Overall - consistent, quality service!
Booked for a large party of over 20, had great service prior to the groups arrival, they are very accommodating and friendly. The group had a fantastic evening food and service was great, great atmosphere. We will be coming again!
One of my favourite restaurants, amazing food, lovely service, great atmosphere, highly recommended!
Fantastic food, great atmosphere!! We had a lovely evening 6pm on Saturday for my sons Birthday. The Black Daal is to die for. Would definately recommend and at a reasonable price.
I went to Dishoom Covent Garden for the first time today with my partner and our 18 month old daughter and would thoroughly recommend it. The Bacon Nan was absolutely delicious and my partner liked his food equally as much. In addition, the staff were extremely friendly and helpful in making sure that my daughter was well catered for. I can't wait to go back to try more!
The Shoreditch outlet was great! Very friendly and helpful as the numbers shifted a bit which didn't faze them and the food was excellent. It's mainstream maybe but it doesn't really pretend otherwise and made up for it with a buzzing atmosphere on a Friday night. Will go back to Shoreditch one, and people in the restaurant and on the door were very nice and friendly (especially the woman with a tattoo?) I'd recommend for a large group especially.
We really enjoyed ourselves. One of our BEST Christmas do’s ever! The food was lovely and tasty, my team and I really enjoyed it, the service was brilliant, really friendly staff you have. We all loved our Santa hats and bindi’s aswell, really gave the Christmas effect! So thanks again. Have recommended your place to others also will definitely visit Dishoom’s again
Yum, yum, yum. What a lovely place. I particularly enjoyed their mango and paneer salad, the spiced latte, the lamb kebabs...everything really. Only thing I would say is that the service in the Shoreditch location is excellent and a little weaker in the Covent Garden one, so I do hope they are not going to make less of an effort once they become more established in east London. The Christmas meal was great too.
Food was not authentic Indian at all. Not a variety menu. Offered very little Indian dishes. Was more on the sweeter end in comparison to an authentic Indian Food. On the other hand, the dips ( mint, tamarind, garlic ) tasted really good. Cannot say that this is authentic Bombay Cuisine. Didn't care much for their Veg Biryani/Vada Pav. We will definitely not go back to the restaurant.
Dreadful service, bland meals that were brought out so far apart that half the table was finished before the other half got their meals, one person in our party didn't eat at all after having to send back her meal twice (once because it had hair in it, the second time because it was hideously overcooked), drinks that took forever to arrive. That this is rated one of the best brunches in London shows how badly brunch is still done here.
We just started a dinner club to try new places on a semi regular basis. This was our first stop. The food was great, because it was subtle and flavourful - not too hot for all to enjoy. The service was also excellent & the restaurant was very accommodating of our large numbers and separate tabs etc. I would highly recommend a visit!