When you had a 3 course meal planned, and that wasn’t normal… then it became 5!
The lovely guys over at Lotus in Leicester Square invited me to try out their traditional Indian cuisine with a modern twist.
We started with an assortment of Popadoms and chutneys; Rice, Potato, Finger Millet Popadoms with Mango, Apricot, Mint, Red Chilly and Green Tomato Chutney all at £2.95 that’s not bad! The variations of textures and flavours worked perfectly to get our appetites going…
We had a pre-starter, starter, kebab course, main and pudding… and to top it off each dish came with a wine pairing! EACH DISH! Needless to say I just sipped each wine, there was no way I was walking out up right if I had drank it all.
The wine pairing was really interesting, firstly most people don’t think of putting wine with Indian food, but actually it worked really well.
Below for starters we had a Beetroot and Sweet Potato Chop and a Butternut Squash and chilli Samosey. The Samosey had a kick to it but the chop balanced it out nicely and had a lovely soft but firm texture.
Then to follow the second lot of starters included the Corn Chaat Golgappa (the ball looking object) and Rattes, Chickpea, Sev and Yogurt Chaat. The Corn Chaat is basically a ball filled with corn that comes with Jaljeera and Tamarind Chutney. You fill it with the chutney and pop it in your mouth quickly before it melts giving you a combination of textures. I’m a fan of crunchy textures with wet/saucy juxtapositions!
We also tried a cocktail to keep it interesting as I especially like something fruity with my dinner, particularly anything spicey. I had the ‘Tollygunge Studio’ which has Pink Moscato, rose petal, raspberries and green cardamom, and it was lovely! Not too sweet but sweet enough and as you can see it was presented beautifully.
Below is the ‘Kebab’ course which isn’t anything like what you’ll see on Kingsland Road…
We had the Paneer Tikka and Potato, Mango, Almonds and Lime Leaf Kebab. The Paneer came cooked to perfection, not sloppy and not dry. I’m a big Paneer fan and it’s nice to try it served in a totally different way rather than submerged in a sauce as it usually comes. The potato kebab had amazing texture and the presentation of both outdid any Indian starters I’ve had before. The Potato kebab definitely had a kick to it so if you like your spice you will love it, the Paneer was milder so they balanced each other out nicely.
The mains…well we had every Vegetarian main going read them all here in detail. The variation of saucy dishes with dry and hot with mild bought the meal together. It’s a great sharing menu meaning there will be dishes you prefer and your dining partner will which makes it fun! The Jackfruit rice was a stand out dish from the mains menu and accompanied the rest of the dishes very well. I also loved the tender Sugar snap pea dish and black lentils which is actually a side.
As you can tell from the below images I looked pretty happy all night! I love trying traditional Indian food (not westernised versions) and it’s even better when the chef is clever enough to modernise it and make his own versions.
On top of the amazing food the staff were not only incredibly nice and helpful, but their knowledge of the wine and menu stood out a mile. The decor was relaxing and luxurious and even when the electricity went down due to road works outside they managed to make the whole experience enjoyable.
And lastly how can we forget pudding? It was like something out of Charlie and The Chocolate Factory. It didn’t seem real… A steamed Yoghurt with an orange sponge which literally oozed orange sauce. The yoghurt was really delicate and the flavours were subtle and fresh and ended the meal nicely.
Check out Lotus for yourself – http://www.lotus.london/