I try not to take it personally; really, I do. But for reasons of heritage and sentimentality, a curry is a hugely personal experience for me. It comes down to the cooking I grew up on. I am still a naïve foreign kid at heart and though living in London is a fast-paced, bright light fantasy, there is a deep-seated desperation instilled in me for authentic spice. Maybe we’re all implanted with that addiction at birth. Maybe I’m homesick. Either way, be assured that I don’t take this task lightly.
The approach to a great Indian restaurant is refreshingly simple. Roll up your sleeves and gorge. Then prepare for the greatest nap of your life. In that spirit, I present the best Indian restaurants in west London. I’ve kept it as simple as possible to book online, so you can concentrate on stuffing yourself. Choose wisely and good luck, brothers-in-arms.
By Omer Hamid.
Image courtesy of Flickr user victoriapeckham.
Chelsea / Restaurant / Cuisine: Indian
Chelsea - Stamped with the seal of approval by natives and locals alike, Chutney Mary is indicative of the forgotten mystique of a nation with a love of extravagance. The restaurant's atmosphere is the kind you just want to drink in; beautifully decadent and rich. The food is upscale, not an after-pub experience. Chutney Mary is a place that has to been experienced; luxuriously filling in every sense. To book a table, follow this link
Belgravia / Restaurant / Cuisine: Indian
Belgravia - Now for a seriously upscale restaurant; a heavily jewelled restaurant with a décor grand enough to use terms like 'rosewood' and 'pink sandstone'. Flashy, pretentious, maybe, but it was enough to secure the Tio Pepe ITV Restaurant Award and a reputation of 7-star dining. The menu is grounded in traditional Asian methods sprinkled with contemporary pizzazz and a theatre-style kitchen. To book a table, follow this link
Fulham / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: Indian
Fulham - A restaurant that takes the concept of 'Indian' cuisine with a pinch of salt and a handful of spice. Indian Seasoning deals with food of the entire subcontinent region from the hearty, bold north to the sharp, fiery south and even venturing into some Chinese dishes; the whole nine yards. Simple decor and healthy mix of clientele means they find a meticulous balance. To book a table, follow this link
Hammersmith / Restaurant / Cuisine: Indian
Hammersmith - My personal favourite name for a restaurant. Run by the renowned Manoj Vasaikar, there is clearly a creative identity to the flavour and food of Indian Zing. The food is free range and organic, incorporated through an elemental approach to Indian heritage and the restaurant does well with relatively simple decorum; a fantastic local from a down-to-earth mentality. To book a table, follow this link
Kensington / Restaurant / Cuisine: Indian
Kensington - Certainly one of the freshest dramatisations of Indian cuisine for some years, Bombay Brasserie places age-old flavours in the contemporary imagination to wondrous results. Modelled on the city of Bombay and its melting-pot society, this restaurant is every bit as elegant as the Raj; every bit as rich as the works of art they seek to evoke through food. This venue is polished, modern and ingenious. To book a table, follow this link
Masala Zone Bayswater
Notting Hill / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: Indian
Bayswater - One of the more accessible restaurants in our Top 10. Without the jewels or post-modern palates, Masala Zone is a far friendlier restaurant to enjoy whole-hearted food and (more importantly) company. The clientele is far younger here, as a result the food may be substance over style but the entire experience of Masala Zone is akin to a good friendship: reliable, consistent and comfortable. To book a table, follow this link
Spice of India on the River
Chelsea / Restaurant / Cuisine: Indian
Imperial Wharf - This west London in restaurant claims a spot in our Top 10 because it is a refreshingly original restaurant that replaces the formula of cheesy faux-Indian music and gaudy mirrors with sleek, curved designs and a welcome terrace area that stretches lazily across the Thames banks. The food is artistic and packs a flavourful punch. If most venues are curry houses, this is surely a curry palace. To book a table, follow this link
Nayaab Indian Restaurant
Fulham / Restaurant / Cuisine: Indian
Fulham - This restaurant's traditional menu, with meaty Pakistani influences, boasts a formidable Tandoori menu as well as other speciality dishes that result in the restaurant's popularity explosion through word of mouth. It is the ideal local Indian with a sterling reputation and humble persona. A founding father of London Indian cuisine, Nayaab is a heavily spiced waft of home for some and welcome for others. To book a table, follow this link
Twickenham / Bar / Restaurant / Cuisine: Indian
Twickenham - Here's a restaurant that is the symbol of what I think is dying trade. Where all over London, bars are giving way to the popular and the expensive, this place Lounger divides into dining, bar and lounger; 3 things I've always wanted with only a few steps between. Located hopping distance from the home of England Rugby, the Lounge is the ideal place to enjoy a pre-match curry and a post-match drink. To book a table, follow this link
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