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Jan 12, 2012 05:08 PM

Modest-Good Indian Options in London

Hello all ! I'm looking for good casual Indian restaurants in London.

The opposite to places like Bombay Brasserie, Amaya, Quilon, Moti Mahal, etc. , etc., etc.

No Brick Lane please; stay Indian not Blangla nor Pak



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  1. I thought the Southern Indian food at Woodlands was pretty tasty. I went to the one near Marylebone High St. You can Google that for the menu. Dishoom is casual and the prices aren't bad. You can use the search box above for some other ideas.

    1 Reply
    1. re: zuriga1

      Thanks !

      I will be staying in Paddington so both places are feasible.


    2. You don't say which area you'd prefer, but if Angel would work then you can eat very well at Delhi Grill. It fits your description of good and casual and the prices are reasonable too. It's run by a great team of young guys and the menu is short, divided into smoky grills and slow-cooked curries, with a few specials on the board (always worth having).

      Centrally, you might like the street food inspired menu on the ground floor of Roti Chai (close to Selfridges / Bond St). Downstairs is smarter/more expensive, but the street food kitchen is more casual. We ate downstairs and found the street food dishes a little better than the curries overall, so will be going back to try upstairs soon.

      6 Replies
      1. re: PigsOnTour

        Thanks Piggy !! I will be staying in Paddington so both places are feasible.


        1. re: domenexx

          Do report back on where you go :)

          (p.s. In Angel, there are good options for pre- or post-dinner drinks. The Lexington on Pentonville Rd has an excellent bourbon selection if you're into that, and there are great cocktails at 69 Colebrook Row. There's live blues at Round Midnight, v close to Delhi Grill, and traditional pubs like The Charles Lamb).

          1. re: PigsOnTour

            Good complements !! I can always use a cocktail !! Have you been in Dishoom rest?


            1. re: domenexx

              I have, but not for a long time. We went when it first opened and loved the decor but found the food good but not great. I'd be willing to go back though, and it is very well located if you need to eat near Covent Garden, Soho or Leicester Square.

            2. re: PigsOnTour

              Hello Pigs !!

              I went to Delhi Grill for the dinner and your assessment was spot on !! Good and friendly service. No frills just goos simple food. Thanks for the advise.

              I had the biffet of Mughals near Paddington Station and next to my hotel. The buffet was good and basic. Only the essentials. One night we had a business meeting in Umu. A Japannese rest very close to The Guinea Grill in Mayfair. Very expensive !! Will not go there on my dime. We enjoy the dinner but was nothing to write about. The last night and went to Al Waha (Lebabese). The star of the trip !! Definitely will return. Had three appeiozers as dinner, wine, dessert for 20 pounds. Highly recommended!!

              Thanks again !


        2. I'm kind of beating dead horse with this one, but if you're willing to travel then you really have to get to Green St and East Ham. Check some of my recent posts for stuff on Green St and East Ham has one of (if not the) best Keralan restaurant in London, Thattukada. It's also ridiculously cheap.

          Closer to you is Indian Zing which is one of if not the only properly Marathi restaurant in London. An extensive chowhound report was written up a while back following a chowdown.

          4 Replies
          1. re: JFores

            Advice well taken and appreciated ! As long as there is the tube, distance is a controllable variable.


            1. re: domenexx

              It's not a particularly bad trek and the amount of stuff on Green St and High Street North is reaching the "justifiable day trip" point. The respective tube stations are Upton Park and East Ham and both are 40-45 minutes away according to TFL, but that's advising you to take Paddington to Edgeware Rd in order to get the Hammersmith and City Line. It's a very easy walk from Paddington to Edgeware Rd tube so it'd probably be faster to just walk to the station in order to avoid the transfer.

              Green St (Upton Park Tube) now has 10+ chaat stalls including some pretty excellent ones in a place called Venus Mall and at Khana Khazana. Most are just mediocre, but I listed the stand outs in an earlier post. There's also a Hyderabadi restaurant further up the road called Hyderabadi Durbar. Not Indian, but there are two Peshwari Pashtun restaurants right by that place as well as a Mauritian restaurant.

              High Street North has 3 Hyderabadi places (at least: Red Chillies, Hyderabadi Flavour and Hyderabadi Spice), a pretty good non-veg Tamil place (Suvai Chettinad), 2 standout dosa and iddly type veg Tamil places (Vasanta Bhavan and Saravaana Bhavan) and one of if not the best Keralan restaurant in London, Thattukada.

                1. re: domenexx

                  Thanks to all for the information !

          2. Often neglected in these posts is the wonderful - truly wonderful - Raavi Kebab, which is near Euston Station, so not too far from where you're staying. It's certainly the equal to the better known Needo Grill and infinitely nicer than Tayyab, which is way over pumped. Dehli Grill is fine, but this is the real thing. Sticking to religious tradition, no alcohol. Try the Beef Nehari for a kick. Everything, even the common 'butter chicken' type dishes are insanely good.

            8 Replies
            1. re: efeinblatt

              my my.

              raavi kebab house has been discussed on these boards - its ok, if a distinct notch below tayyabs and needo. it really is hard to fault the seekh kebabs at tayyabs, which is also about the only place in london to offer decent shammi kebabs (wednesday special).

              delhi grill is indian punjabi - very different from pakistani punjabi. so for example, delhi grill will make its kebabs in a tandoor while tayyabs/needo/raavi will grill them over charcoal.

              1. re: howler

                Guess there's a difference of opinion here....You're right, Howler, Tayyab does have excellent kebabs, but I don't think the rest of the items on the menu are standouts, and certainly not worth lining up for. I've eaten at Dehi Grill 4 times in the last six weeks, and have tasted pretty much the entire menu - though the specials do change from week to week, and I've surely missed something. It is consistently good, though I can't say I've been blown away by anything, and the kebabs were, frankly, not to my liking - but maybe this is because I'm used to charcoal. Needo's dried beef appears often in my dreams, but I have found their grills to be inconsistent, though it is my go to place because I'm in E. London, and I've never had a real miss there. I haven't been back to Raavi Kebab - not a tourist place AT ALL - for over a year, and I've only had 3 meals there - all without the least regret. Though I've not sampled the entire menu, everything we ate was top notch and perfectly spiced and, it's close to Paddington, which is where domenexx is staying....Maybe you should re-visit or, perhaps, maybe I should.

                On another note, some friends have asked us to join them for S. Indian in Wandsworth. Anyone eaten there? It's quite a trek.

                1. re: efeinblatt

                  I'm not aware of any notable Indian places in Wandsworth neighbourhood but Tooting has a large Indian (Gujurati?) population and is in Wandsworth borough.

                  1. re: gembellina

                    Well, we're meeting at the Tooting Bec tube stop, so at least we're in the right area. Recommendations anyone?

                    1. re: efeinblatt

                      Apollo Banana Leaf for Sri Lankan?

                      1. re: JFores

                        Well, Justin, my friends are from Venezuela, so let's see what they have up their sleeves. Not going until Thursday the 9th. Will let you know.

                    2. re: gembellina

                      Tooting's pretty South Indian and Sri Lankan these days. With the closing of Kastoori I don't even know if they have a Gujarati restaurant left in the area.

                      1. re: JFores

                        That'll teach me to quote wikipedia! Apollo Banana Leaf would be my rec too. Be careful with the mutton masala, i honestly think I did myself some damage with that dish.