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Dockmaster's House (Bar, Restaurant)

Picture of Dockmaster's House in Canary Wharf, London

Dockmasters House, West India Dock Gate, Canary Wharf, London, E14 8JJ
Cuisine: Indian
Tel: 0207 345 0345 | Email to Dockmaster's House | Transport: Westferry | Write review

Dockmaster's House Review

The wind, oh the wind. I was feeling a little swept away by the time I reached Dockmaster’s House, so was relieved to have a warm welcome as I ‘docked’. Although not aptly named, Dockmaster’s claim to fame is its unique ‘Indian fine dining’, and with the inspiration of Indian-born chef, Navin Bhatia, the menu, and indeed the whole restaurant (which was formerly a curry house), has been totally reformed in recent years.

Dockmaster’s is anything but Bollywood-styled vibrant colours mirrored by gold framing. No, this is sleek, simple, and very contemporary with subtle, stylish colours discreetly seducing you into comfort.

It was cosy inside and since my guest was late, the staff graciously whipped me away into the bar-cum-waiting room where a courteous waiter brought me a cocktail menu. The manager also came out to greet me, and I immediately sensed her clean cut manner tinged with porcelain perfectionism. I was in good hands.

Now, I love gin, and very soon hankered after a refreshing, clear cocktail. I was dismayed, however, to be presented with a drink that resembled murky water with a cherry at the bottom of the glass. I could see the cherry through the haze, and was looking forward to finishing the drink to get at it, but my perception of gin has now been somewhat tainted (hopefully, only temporarily).

Despite this minor hinderance, the drinks menu was astonishingly eclectic and for those who might fancy themselves as a sommelier, there is a range of 200 wines to choose from. Plus, if spirits are more your poison, there are some amazing whiskies and scotches dating back between 10 and 30 years: impressive.

My guest finally arrived and we were ushered into the main dining room. It felt somewhat as though we were walking through a thoroughfare, since the main restaurant is situated at the back of the building through a separate dining room designed for larger groups. Once inside the main restaurant, however, I easily understood why.

Our table was set in a glass room, overlooking the lights of Canary Wharf. The ceiling and walls invoked a sense of crystal freshness while simultaneously brewing a snug ambience. The lighting was discreet and potentially romantic; so don’t be afraid to bring a significant other. The bottle of house wine (a recommended red - the Tiddy Widdy Well Shiraz) will cosy your affair up, not to mention flatter the Indian spices.

Speaking of spices, the Dockmaster’s team source them from my home country of South Africa, as well as from India, whereas the meats are all locally bought and carefully selected. This was evident in the honey and clove quail with moong bean salad I chose as a starter. I have never tried quail before and, thanks to Dockmaster’s, I will gladly choose it again sometime.

My choice of bird didn’t stop with the starters as I opted for the tandoori grilled fenugreek chicken as a main which was tender and delicious. The food was finely presented with frills of fresh herbs and dashes of sauce decoratively pronounced on our plates; contrary to the accustomed Indian ‘stew’. Thirst wasn’t an issue, either, as my wine glass was always full; the impeccable service ran on oiled wheels.

When dessert came, envy crossed my face as I glared at my companion’s mint ice cream. I felt cheated that I hadn’t ordered it. Nevertheless. I nonchalantly stole regular mouthfuls as my palate cried out for more. My only criticism of the dessert was that this sumptuous, almost sensually enthralling portion was less than generous! With the mint ice cream distracting me, I couldn’t really pay attention to my own nut biscuit and crème brulee.

Dessert aside, there was also a smattering of pre and post nibbles, including mini spicy dumplings and mini sweet tarts; chef’s way of showing us his continued refininement of the menu.

My friend and I were delighted not to be exposed to the gyrating, bell jingling, hip bumping music of Bollywood, which can prove slightly distracting sometime. On the contrary, the music was relaxing and cheerful, and I was not drawn to it, but rather mellowed by it.

Dockmaster’s House are proud of their USP and I think it is an excellent idea. It must be said that Indian fine dining was a first for me. With a chic and enticing late night club downstairs, as well as a garden area featuring soft, luscious green grass, and three separate areas for private functions, Dockmaster’s is so much more than just a restaurant. Dockmaster’s has completely reformed itself from that curry house of yore. Congratulations Dockmasters. You qualify with top masters.
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Customer Reviews for Dockmaster's House

Average (based on 1 votes): 1 Atmosphere: Value: Quality:

The following customer reviews are not endorsed by Fluid London and are simply those of users who wish to publish their independent experiences of Dockmaster's House.

“Used the booking service on this site and had a fantastic evening here with my boyfriend. The food was divine and the venue was stunning. Would highly recommend Dockmaster's House.”
Atmosphere: Value: Quality:
Londoner, London (9 years 2 months 19 days ago)

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Dockmaster's House Opening Hours

Monday: Closed Friday: 6:00pm - 10:00am
6:00pm - 2:00am
Tuesday: 6:00pm - 12:00am Saturday: 6:00pm - 12:00am
Wednesday: 6:00pm - 12:00am Sunday: Closed
Thursday: 6:00pm - 2:00am    

Additional Information

Dockmaster's House Food & Drinks

Dockmaster's House Food Menu

For Dockmaster’s House Navin planned a menu featuring ancient, traditional Indian recipes using modern British ingrediants to create a lighter, more contemporary menu. His vision is to bring back to Inidan cuisine what has been lost over the years.. distinctive flavours, aromas and style!

Updated 03/03/2009

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Venue ID: 17300

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Loved

"Hi guys, I come here with my friends and have very good time. I like your place very much and is very good times. I come back when I can soon. Thank you very much." Which venue is this?

Hated

"Dreadful pub, run by people who have zero idea about hospitality or running a pub. Upon arrival we sat in the back garden that only had one other table occupied , when we tried to order off the lunch menu..." Which venue is this?

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