Dishoom described by its owners as 'the original Bombay cafe' has been designed to offer diners authentic Indian cuisine in small sharing portions. The cafes of Bombay welcomed all; from rich business men on business lunch; to sweaty taxi drivers on a quick break and couples on that all important first date. Dishoom pays homage to this and looks to do the same...
The interiors are easy on the eye; black and white floors, bentwood style chairs, pretty lanterns and walls lined with portraits of the owners and their families - my what big families they have!
We started the meal with a couple of cocktails; the Bollybellini made with rose, lychee and raspberry, which may not have been the chosen tipple of the Persian immigrants but it definitely got our sign of approval. And the Bombay Colada, an improved take in the pina made with pineapple, coconut milk, rum and numerous herbs and spices. Priced at around £6.50 a cocktail = bargain!
Because the food is served in small portions you have the perfect excuse to order more - we sampled Lamb Samosas, Lamb Boti Kabab, Grilled Masala Prawns and Lamb Biryani. We couldn't fault any of the dishes but our highlights were the Lamb Boti, generous chunks of tender lamb marinated in red chilli, garlic and ginger and the Grilled Masala Prawns, six meaty prawns grilled with lime, tomato and coriander to give a tasty zing which complemented the chargrilled flavour nicely.
Lamb Biryani was pretty hot and definitely not one of the faint hearted. Thankfully on the recommendation of the waitress we had ordered the raita (yogurt with fresh coriander and mint) which helped to cool things down a notch.
After a well needed breather we moved on to dessert choosing the Pineapple and Black Pepper Crumble served with ice cream and the Chocolate Fondant to share. The crumble stole the show and on all accounts was the dish of the day! Fresh pineapple with an almost granola like crumble cooked fresh that morning and fused with pepper to add an Indian kick.
For reliable Indian food in Central London with a bill which won't break the bank Dishoom really is a no brainer!