Enter through a tiny doorway just off busy Regent Street and a lift takes you up to a first-floor dining room with windows looking on to the retail chaos below. Veeraswamy has an air of granny’s posh drawing room about it – if granny’s family were royalty, that is. Tinted glass lamps, sepia-tinted photos of the Raj and plush carpets make the whole thing feel a little 1970s, in a retro-cool sort of way. The restaurant opened in 1926 and its owners’ portfolio now includes Chutney Mary, Amaya and the Masala Zone chain.
Glitzy surroundings aside, the food is, in the main, outstanding. A starter of meltingly soft paneer layered with green herbs and warming spices arrives gently charred from the tandoor. The spicy paste on the perfectly pink amritsari lamb chops is authentically heavy on the ginger and garlic. A tiny portion of gulab jamun provides a perfect end to the meal. The only thing that jars is the cost. A fairly average bottle of red wine is priced at £34 and, moist and moreish though our chicken biriani was, all the ‘aged basmati’ in the world would never justify its £23 price tag.
Situated in a prime Regent Street location, Veeraswamy has been offering the finest classical Indian cuisine since 1926. It is celebrated as the grand dame of Indian restaurants, known for its refined cuisine and opulent Raj-inspired style.
The prestigious National Geographic Magazine has listed Veeraswamy as one of the 'ten best destination and special restaurants in the world'. The food served is rarely found in the restaurants of India let alone Europe,
Veeraswamy is the original Indian gourmet experience, and one that has proven to be, over the many decades, a generational favourite. Since 1926, its raison d’etre has been refined, splendid, classical Indian cuisine, with contemporary panache specialising in recipes served in palaces and patrician homes of India.
Its menu of classical dishes is served alongside personally inspired contemporary creations all prepared by chefs from the region of the dish's origin.
The private dining room is perfect for private dining up to 22, or cocktail parties up to 50. The décor is romantic and playful. Baccarat chandeliers, a flickering candlelit wall, rich Moghul-style carpets and elegant silk curtains create an atmosphere of romance and celebration.
It offers a special Sunday lunch of Indian favourites at only £26 for three courses, with a full choice from the a la carte menu.