Following an earlier thread on good North Indian restaurants in London, I dropped by Gaylord on Mortimer Street last night. As reported by Howler, it is indeed owned by the same group that runs restaurants by the same name in India and under different names in the US.
This place is a time capsule. Nothing seems to have changed since about 1980. In a strange way this has its charms! The overstuffed decorations we used to know and love in Indian restaurants back in the day. The vaguely incompetent staff running around, while ignoring you. (Indeed, one of the charms of the old-school Indian restaurants was that the staff though Indian knew very little about food. Gaylord preserves this bit of authenticity.)
The food? Also circa 1980. I tried 3 vegetables: okra, spinach with ginger, and eggplant. The spinach was the best of the lot, not overly oily, but with minimal flavor. The other two were the pools of oil you would expect from Indian place of this vintage. The naans were competent, in a fluffy sort of way.
(To test their old-school mettle, I asked for a finger bowl at the end of the meal. To their credit, they did not bat an eyelid, though instead brought me a hot towel. There is truly no substitute for the finger bowl after an Indian meal eaten by hand, but a hot towel is better than being forced into the grotty loo.)
Strangely, I enjoyed the experience. But I would save it for a night when you're in a nostalgic mood about the many misdeeds of the 1980s.