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A modern Indian restaurant in the City, led by celebrity chef Vivek Singh.
The smart-casual sister restaurant to Westminster’s exclusive Cinnamon Club has a lofty dining room that channels industrial vibes (a nod to the fact that the space was once a warehouse of the East India Trading Company), and being in the City, is generally full of suits.
The menu cleverly pairs Indian spices and flavours with seasonal British ingredients. For example, classic chaat – which traditionally features chickpeas and potatoes – was given a new spin, taking the form of artichoke and spinach crisps drizzled with yoghurt, chutney and pomegranate seeds. It was both nicely crunchy and delicately sweet. The best dish of the night, meanwhile, was the sea bass, cooked in the tandoor and scattered with puffed masala rice. Tender and well spiced, it left a pleasant heat on the tongue.
Classics feature too: a generous portion of chicken biryani arrived in a hot pot, and was brilliant with cucumber yogurt. The herbs on top brought freshness, and the chicken fell apart in the mouth. But the uttapam (thick pancakes), were bland; the tandoori subz saag (a pond-green spinach sauce with root veg chunks floating in it) only slightly better.
On the Tuesday night of our visit, we were packed in close; most tables were full and we had to raise our voices over the noise. Service was impersonal and slightly obtrusive, perhaps because of the sheer number of diners. The vision of this restaurant is good, but the execution needs work.
9 Devonshire Square
|Transport:||Tube: Liverpool St|
|Price:||Dinner for two with drinks and service: around £85.|
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