The Handbook
The Handbook

This Indian restaurant, set in the heart of Mayfair has just entered its 14th year. With endless praise on their website, the Michelin starred restaurant has been hailed as one of the most sophisticated Indian restaurants in London. So how did it measure up

Alfred Prasad, their head chef is renowned for his ever-changing Southern and North-West Indian menu. However, despite there being ample choice available the result was still nothing different. To start with we ordered the Jhinga Ajwaini Tiger prawns and the Lasooni Pasliyan Grilled lamb cutlets marinated in olive oil with spiced aubergine. While nothing was dissatisfactory at all about the food, it lacked that ‘star’ quality that one expects from a Michelin star restaurant.

For the main, we were recommended a wide variety and sampled a few of their other specialities. Again the meat was good, the lamb tender and the chicken and beef highly recommendable. However, where I think Tamarind sadly slips up is in their sauces. Doused in cream and spices, your taste buds are overwhelmed to such an extent it’s difficult to pinpoint exactly what you are supposed to be sampling. Although in India the use of heavy sauces is commonplace, I feel the richness detracts rather than adds to the experience in some dishes and sometimes the subtlety of the spices are lost.

Yet, although the food may not be outstanding there is an extensive wine list and the attentive staff means the service is great without being intrusive. Despite the fact that it is in the basement, the restaurant is also surprisingly cosy and elegant.

Tamarind is a tad overpriced for what it offers but with the menu constantly changing if you’re a devotee of Indian Cuisine then it is worth a visit to try the extensive menu. Tamarind offers a range of set menus for lunch, dinner and pre-theatre dining. Food lovers will be keen to know that it was the first Indian restaurant in Europe to receive Michelin recognition and has held its star for more than seven years.

Average price: £45-54

Tamarind Mayfair


20 Queen Street

London W1J 5PR