Curry! Perhaps the most favourite food in the UK, and certainly one that most of us love. No matter where you go, there’s always a curry house on every corner. But whilst they’re extremely prolific, standards from one to another vary wildly.
So if you’re looking for an Indian restaurant in London where you can guarantee excellent service and food, you’d do far worse than to try one (or more) of the following:
1. Benares, Mayfair
In the heart of trendy Mayfair, the Michelin starred Benares Restaurant serves only the best Indian cuisine with a ‘contemporary British twist’. Whilst not the cheapest choice, you can expect every dish that arrives at your table to be of delectable quality. Two course set menus start from £29, with delights such as Punjabi Style Sea Bass and Chips, Masala Squid and Lamb Seekh Salad.
The restaurant is open Monday to Saturday from 12:00 to 14:30 and 17:30 to 23:00. From the end of March 2105, it will also open on Sundays from 12:00 to 22:00.
2. Tayyabs, Whitechapel
If you like Punjabi cuisine, then you’ll love Tayyabs. This Whitechapel based restaurant has been around since 1972, it’s renowned for it’s spiced curries and mixed grills.
This is a popular restaurant, so we recommend pre-booking. Otherwise you’ll have to join a queue and likely be disappointed when you don’t get a table. Expect traditional delights such as Chicken Tikka and Masala Fish, as well as daily specialities such as Meat Pilau or Karahi King Prawns. Tayyabs is open 7 days a week for lunch and dinner.
3. Cinnamon Club, Westminster
This superb restaurant offers city centre dining and a wonderful, ever-changing menu. Located in Westminster, the Cinnamon Club is housed in the former Westminster Library – a Grade II listed building. There are always promotional menus starting from around £22 for two courses, and they also offer pre or post theatre meals, if you’re looking to dine before or after a show.
You can expect dishes such as Home Smoked Mackerel Fillet with Masala Mash, or Creen Banana and Red Kidney Bean Kofta to tempt you. The restaurant is the brainchild of top chef, Vivek Singh, and we guarantee that the food on offer won’t disappoint. If you don’t manage to book a table here, then you can also try his other two London Indian restaurants, Cinnamon Kitchen or Cinnamon Soho.
4. Moti Mahal, Covent Garden
Diners at Moti Mahal are greeted by a wonderfully inviting interior, not to mention an award winning, large wine list. And the food? Well, let’s just say it’s an inventive, pan-Indian mixture with dishes to suit every palate. Why not try the Gosht Shakarkandi (tender lamb and sweet potato), or Guinea Fowl Samosa. This is North Indian cuisine at its best, and is perfectly located in trendy Covent Garden.
But once again, be sure to book a table as this really is a restaurant that’s made a name for itself. The restaurant is open Monday to Friday 12:00-15:00 and 17:30-23:00, and Saturday 17:30-23:00.
5. Ganapati, Peckham
If you’re up for making the journey South of the River Thames to Peckham, then we’re pretty sure that the food at Ganapati will be worth it. Influenced by the street food of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Andhra Pradesh and Karnataka, this Southern Indian cuisine is perhaps as authentic as you’ll find in the Western Hemisphere.
Open 7 days a week, Ganapeti’s chefs are committed to providing the freshest, tastiest food possible. Enjoy Vegetarian Street Snacks or Meen Malli Varutha (swordfish steams in masala). Another great thing about the menu is the prices – nothing’s inflated here. You simply get great Indian food for regular prices, cooked by chefs who learned their trade in the country of their origin. A true gem of a dining experience…
6. Potli, Hammersmith
Potli bills itself as an ‘Indian Market Kitchen’. Here you’re guaranteed an authentic array of curries, spices and other traditional Indian delights, in a chilled and relaxed atmosphere. Boasting reasonable prices, good portions and 7 day a week opening, we’re pretty sure you’ll be delighted by the dining experience.
The restaurant owners pride themselves in creating authentic Indian dishes and using local produce – all ending up in a wonderful mixture of taste, smell and other sensual delights. A great place to visit with your family or a group of friends. Once again, it’s advisable to pre-book as this is a popular place with both locals and tourists alike.
7. Imli Street, Soho
Uber-trendy Soho is the location for this super-cool restaurant. Imli Street is another restaurant that’s based on the street food of its home country. The owners have come up with some great, multi-cultural inspired dishes such as the ‘naanwich’ (Indian food within a naan bread, cut up so you can eat it as a sandwich). Other delights on offer include Lamb Kebabs and a Classic Indian Railway Omelette!
Prices are surprisingly low for such a central area. You can eat in or grab food on the go if you’re in a hurry.
For ease of booking for any of the above restaurants, Open Table offers a free online booking system. You can also read real-time reviews of all the restaurants before you book. In addition, if any restaurant is offering any promotions, the site will also alert you of this and you can instantly take advantage of it.