Kricket’s new Soho restaurant is the much-awaited spin-off of the tiny but brilliant Brixton original. Once again, Anglo-Indian small plates are the speciality here. But this time, the vibe is more obviously one of stylish sophistication: think exposed brick and sleek monogrammed barstools, dominated by an L-shaped counter where you can dine looking over into a gleaming open kitchen. Sit here for the best experience – the chefs are fit and friendly, and you get to watch them do clever things like skilfully rolling kathi (skewer-roasted kebabs).
Just as good-looking is the menu itself. Refreshingly short, everything on it felt carefully considered. Best of all was the kid goat raan: served in a simple ceramic bowl, this was a generously portioned stew of tender meat, dotted with sweet pomegranate seeds. A dish of butter garlic crab was also delicious: perfectly creamy and packing a chilli punch, it came beautifully presented in a dinky little bowl with poppadoms perched on top for dipping. My only nitpick would be that it was so rich it could have done with being half the size (and, therefore, price). There were a couple of niggling errors elsewhere too: samphire pakoras came with just a tad too much date and tamarind chutney, and the signature Keralan fried chicken was a little too salty.
But when Kricket’s good, it’s brilliant. The delicately aromatic cardamom kheer rice pudding was hugely comforting; a spiced masala chai so delicious I ordered two. Plus this joint looks so good and feels so intimate that it’d be a great place to wine and dine a hot date – not something you could claim of your average Brick Lane cuzza. Feeling lucky? You could always go solo and try your chances with one of those chefs.