mmmm! I can;t wait to go back there!!
Reserve your table at Dishoom Book a table
Covent Garden, London
56 Hanbury St, London E1 5JL
debbiecs: “We discovered Meraz about three years ago and it serves the best Indian food I've had outside of India! We've taken many different friends there, who have also recommended it to other friends (we should be on commission!). Samis Lamb, Chicken...” more...
44 reviews of Dishoom in English
The staff were friendly and attentive. Maybe too quick to get your order though; I hadn't even got my menu open and the waiter was asking what we wanted.
The décor and atmosphere were really nice. I liked all the little Indian touches you'd not usually see in an Indian restaurant. Such as the sign by the door explaining the rules, very funny. I also liked the lighting, up turned brandy glasses with the stem cut off hanging from chains.
Some of the kitchen equipment wasn't working so there were items we couldn't order. We both opted for the Keema Frankie, a spiced minced lamb wrap at £6.90. It was a good size, very mild but flavoursome. A good choice. I then had the Gunpowder Potatoes. Shallow fried fluffy potatoes gently seasoned with herbs and spices and chopped spring onions at £5.50. The portion was enough for two to share and was very moreish.
My son had the the Pau Bhaji. A dish of mashed vegetables with a buttered pau bun at £3.90. It was fresh, light and delicious and again enough for two to share. He followed this with a Bombay Floater. Chocolate ice-cream floating in a tall glass of thums up (cola). Thums up is an Indian cola made by the coca cola company and is quite different from normal coke. Great stuff at £3.70. I chose the Green Darjeeling Tea at £2.20 a pot. This was really lovely and a great end to the meal. The pot was huge but only filled with enough water for three full cups. It was very refreshing though. To round it off we had a Malai Kulfi £2.90, small but good with a caramel taste and a Pineapple and black pepper crumble which was said to be very good at £5.20. Total for the meal: £41.85
I did like this place and would certainly go back again soon. I would have given more points, but I didn't because you couldn't choose how hot or mild you wanted each dish and the tables were so close to each other you felt like you were wedged between the tables with no room to move. It also irritated me that people were using chairs for their lap tops. Once we'd paid the bill the staff tended to ignore you and didn't reply when we said 'Goodbye'.
What I did like was the food, it was not the usual Indian fayre dished up in most restaurants and that made a big difference to me. The menu felt like a sheet from a newspaper which liked too. There were other dishes that caught my eye too, that's why I'd like to go back.
The menu is designed for sharing, with smaller plates and larger portions and it all comes up pretty much at the same time. But they are very accommodating -- you can order some smaller dishes and eat them, then order more, big or small. We were encouraged to do just this. (and we did)
So we had fried skate cheeks and crispy calamari, both very differently spiced, and a keema pau (listed as a small dish but almost enough for a light meal!), lamb chops, (4), black dhal, a home-style house 'Ruby' (a chicken curry) and lamb biriani, all lovely. The black dhal was rich, creamy and soothing, the lamb chops were outstanding, tender and with a good spice hit, the chicken curry was a delight and the lamb biriani was delicate and aromatic (if just a little short on lamb).
Other good things -- a trio of chutneys, all fresh tasting and nothing like the dreaded 'chutney tray' with its over-sweet mango and tired kachoombar. And the bread! The roti was almost ethereally light and elastic. We had four between three of us. Plain nan was every bit as good as the one in your favourite Indian.
We drank icy, refreshing lassi. The cocktails look most enticing, will definitely try them next time -- and there will be a next time.
We paid about £28 a head, including service, and we were stuffed. (Over-ordered, as usual, but we ate up every bit of it.)
Comment 1 comment on this review
bexb-d, 25 September 2012:
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And it was well worth the wait. Promoted as a 'Bombay Cafe' - but far more stylish a setting than the image that conjures up, we were ushered into our little 'cavern' downstairs and given a Bombay Pimms - pimms, saffron gin, ginger beer and coriander. I love Pimms and was slightly dubious as to how this would taste,, but I can assure it more than worked - it was fabulous...and kicked our evening off to a great start.
The head chef then came out to explain what we would be eating - a selection of dishes from their 'small plates' offer. Think Indian tapas and you will have hit the nail on the head.
We had keema pau, skate cheeks koliwada and bhel - a zesty and fresh puffed rice salad with pomegranate. The keema pau was the star of the show, rich and full of flavour - only lightly spiced. But the skate cheeks were also gorgeous - tender and moist with a slightly spicy batter.
Unfortunately we didn't get much time at Dishoom as we had to rush off to the next location of our 'crawl',, but what we had definitely made me thirsty (and hungry) for more - so I wil be retrning!
I've been to Dishoom a fair few times. Usually what happens is I look at the menu, give the very patient and friendly waiting staff a hard time over how I can get this stuff much cheaper in East London, with bigger portion sizes, and have a bit of banter about how they aren't allowed to change the menu or ask for things to be changed.
Each time the food arrives and I shut up and eat it because it tastes so lovely.
The pau bhaji is just like my mum used to make, only they are much tighter on the bread than my mum was. They give you enough bhaji for 4 bread but you only get 2. The same goes for a few more of their dishes.
The bacon naan rolls are quite possibly the best bacon based product I have ever eaten.
The chai is lovely.
And they have this Bombay mojito thing that is really nice and refreshing.
So, I'd give this place 5 stars except for the following:
1. The menu items can't really be customised
2. Portion sizes are really tight for the price you pay
3. The bar is downstairs and really dark. It would be much nicer if it was upstairs and the dining area was downstairs (and a bit brighter).
But it's a great place - you should try it. And try their new branch in Shoreditch too because it'll be better :)
The quality of the food we had was very nice and looking at the menu it reminds me of an indian tapas bar.
we started with a bombay pimms, and served Keema Pau,Bhel,Skate Cheeks after speaking to the chef (very knowledgeable and the look of a bollywood moviestar ;), we then also had Calamari and a vada (a spicy potato patty in a bun).
The drinks walla also came over to speak to us and gave us a history on the drinks and out bombay pimms.
The staff are very friendly and informative on their menu and history and i have no doubts in recommending this resturant and i will definetly be going back to sample some more dishes as the lamp chops sound very nice
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Think of it like Indian Tapas...lots of small dishes for you to share around - my perfect kind of meal!
We came hear as part of a Qype event so have't sampled all the food, but we did have:
It's so hard to describe how amazing the food was. It was fresh, homemade, completely unexpected. I was thinking the usual Indian food, stodgy, large and very filling - but Doshoom is light and has little extra twists to make the food exceptional.
For example the calamari was cooked to perfection, the batter crispy but it was sweet! I've never had calamari sweet, but it added an extra dimension to the experience. mmmm. The same with their version on Pimms - made with Ginger Beer rather than lemonade (not to my taste, but I can appreciate why it's nice)
You can't reserve tables for less than 10 people as far as I'm aware, but I would really recommend try it out!
Needless to say I think I'll be coming back here to try more of what this lovely Bombay Cafe has to offer.
Dishoom is the perfect place for a quick bite to eat and perfectly located for pre-theatre dinner, etc. We were all quite intrigued by the breakfast menu which starts at 8am - excellent idea!
I am a big fan of tapas-style menus as I can never make up my mind and love the idea of tasting many different flavours. The portions are quite generous and the hardest decision will be when to stop ordering. We were lucky to be introduced to the head chef and learnt a bit more about the menu which is a collection of favourite dishes from different regions in India - apparently there is no other place where you'd find a similar variety.
We sampled a Bombay take on Pimms - a particular hit with fans of ginger beer!
Es ist also etwas moderner hier, genauso wird auch das Essen und trinken im Dishroom ein wenig moderner interpretiert. Klassische indische Details wie Koreander oder Safran werden mit beliebten englischen Köstlichkeiten wie Pimms gemischt. Das Personal ist überzeugt von dem, was es verkauft und das merkt man. Voller begeisterung erklärte uns z.B. der Barkeeper, was alles in seinem Bombay Pimms drin ist und obwohl es danach klang, als müsse der Cocktail eigentlich nach Curry schmecken, schmeckte er sehr frisch, leicht und lecker. Auch das Essen war würzig aber nicht zu scharf. Genau richtig.
Ein schönes Restaurant für alle, die es gerne etwas ausgefallener und stylisher haben.
The first of the three stations of our Covent Garden Crawl by Qype was very stylish.
It's an Indian restaurant which mixes traditional food with modern and british elements. A good example would be the Bombay Pimms, which is an ordinary Pimms, pimmed with safran, coriander and other very indian ingredients. It was really tasty which was surpring to me - I thought it must taste like a curry or something. But it was fresh, delicious and just like a well spiced Pimms.
The food was yummy, as well. It was not to greasy and had just the right amount of spices.
To conclude:The Dishroom is a very nice, modern and stylish Indian restaurant which I absolutely recommend to all of you!
We started with Bombay Pimms (a great start to any summer evening) and soon after several small plates to share arrived. I personally prefer this way of eating over a large plate with one dish - so these small bites of many plates made me one happy lady.
The Bhel salad - great mix of flavours and a must for pomegranate fans
The Keema Pau (lamb) - so flavoursome and plain morish
Now I've had the opportunity to try out the food, Dishoom is well and truly on my mental map of restaurants in central London (which is the beginning of any of my repeat visits).
Comment 2 comments on this review
Batavier, 17 August 2012:
The Indian restaurants in England are just infinitely better than those here in Germany! Bland food and rude staff are the common ingredients here.
maeverutten, 21 August 2012:
That’s a pity. I have to say London has indeed a great number of fab Indian restaurants. But then again I was in Munich for 2 weeks recently and enjoyed many of its friendly establishments ;-)
Our server was a young chap by the name of Lokesh. We explained that we were ravenous having missed lunch, and Lokesh kindly took us through how much we might have needed to order. He also explained that food arrives as it is cooked, this is a cafe not a restaurant (even though, as cafes go, this is more like a restaurant than any other cafe I've been to).
Food arrived, and was delicious! Skate cheeks - lovely chunks of fish coated in spiced gram flour and flash fried and served with fenugreek and coriander with red chilli dip, tamarind, spicy tomato sauce and mint, coriander and green chilli sauce. Yum. Sheel kebab were meltingly soft, as they should be, with a satisfying bite of ginger and green chilli. Clumsily we both ended up ordering the same main dish, a lamb biryani. This arrived 'dum' style, sealed with a pastry lid. The lamb was cooked soft and the rice was nicely moist still. A good balance of spicing which was offset with a raita which we asked for as an accompaniment.
Dessert was a Gola Ice, shaved ice and tamarind for that sweet/sour/savoury edge (kala khatta), kind of like a Coke might taste, Indian style. It was lovely but probably one for a very hot day rather than the soggy one we had experienced, can't criticise Dishoom for that.
Cocktails (pomegranate juice, gin, martini and a hint of line juice - yum) and Nimboo Pani (lemon juice, mint, sparkling water, sugar and a hint of spice) accompanied the meal.
Delicious, good service which was attentive and 'felt' rather than rehearsed. A delightful place which I'll visit again. I gather a new branch is opening soon (in Shoreditch).
Foodwise, all very good. The waiter suggested we order 3 dishes each, but I had more than enough food with the chicken salad and roti, ending up sharing my daal around the table. The cocktails are great value too.
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