One of the first restaurants that I blogged about in 2017 and till date continues to be on my list of top fine dining Indian restaurants in London is Jamavar. I chose to spend my birthday here and have very fond memories of the evening. You can recap my birthday experience here. Which is why when I found out that the team behind Jamavar were opening a new restaurant, I was straightaway onto their bookings webpage.
We visited on a Wednesday with my husband, brother and our common friend Priyam who is also a fellow travel blogger. You can check out her travel website here.
Our super efficient waiter explained the menu. Most of the food is for sharing, so we decided to order a bunch of starters from the Small Plates section to begin with. I had heard lots of good stuff about the Masala Akuri Truffle Naan (£7), so it was first on my list to order. I love scrambled eggs and this spicy version was positively droolworthy, served on a mattress of fluffy Naan bread. The truffle shavings on top added an extra layer of depth, interest and sophistication.
The Bombay Staple Rarah Keema Pao (£8) was equally delectable. Insanely buttery Pao (sort of like a brioche) was paired with a spicy, kickass goat meat mince. I am so glad to see goat making such a presence in London restaurant tables, as it is one of the tastiest meats.
We also sampled the inventive Trio of Duck Dosa (£11) ; three mini pancakes stuffed with spicy Duck Chettinad filling which was happily devoured between the four of us.
However, top marks went to Achari Lamb Chop (£15) – Hampshire Lamb, Pickling Spices, Pickled Onion) from the Tandoor section. The meat was gorgeously spiced, groaning with flavours and just melted in the mouth.
Moving on to the mains, we ordered more of that Hampshire Lamb again. First up was in the form of Dum Nalli Biryani (£18). Although a fine rendition, we felt it hadn’t fully absorbed the rich combination of spices and flavours that one expects from a Dum Biryani.
The second version was the Nalli Nihari (£16) which was a unanimous choice. Again, we felt it lacked the depth and intensity that comes from the slow cooking in this classic lamb dish. The slow cooking is supposed to make the meat fall of the bones whilst this one was not quite there.
Our meal ended on a sweet note with two of their desserts. The Kulfi Mix (£6) were three little medallions, steadily collapsing into a creamy puddle so we attacked it straightaway.
The fushiony Malai Jalebi (£8) – a playful twist of a deconstructed Indian Jalebi, served Western style as a cheesecake – was outstanding. We loved everything about it – the presentation, textures and taste.
On that note, our wonderful meal came to an end. Service throughout the evening was relaxed and informal so no complaints there.
Upon reflection we agreed that the starters at Bombay Bustle are more scintillating than the mains. In a city ‘bustling’ with Indian restaurants, it is these inventive and creative Small Plates, offering a riot of flavours that will get the foodie punters through the door.
Location : 29 Maddox Street, Mayfair, W1S 2PA
More information can be found here.