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Restaurants & Bars

[London] La Porte Des Indes, Marylebone

deansa | Feb 2, 201005:22 AM     7

Went to this Franco-Indian restaurant last night at a family member's request.

Food prices reflect the OTT decor. The interior is cavernous and impressive in every kitsch detail, with multi-storey waterfalls and trees, plus drapes hanging from the ceiling. A bit reminiscent of Blue Elephant, but Indian theme – which is no surprise as it's owned by the same group.

Service was a bit mixed. No-one at any point offered to take our coats despite their apparently being a cloakroom. In fact, the waiter patiently stood beside the table watching us struggling with our coats without saying a word, waiting for us to finish so he could provide the menu. Also, I had to ask for tap water three times. After that everything went much better though.

We shared the Shahi Thali (curry thali) and Shakahari Thali (vegetarian thali).

The Tandoori chicken was the standout component, very moist and beautifully spiced. Nilgiri Machi (Monkfish in a green coconut curry) was very interesting and distinctive and was a good Thali dish (though I suspect as a main it would quickly become overpowering.)

The rest of the Thali components were less interesting. Competently cooked, but the spicing was low-key, resulting in very unchallenging dishes. But hey, in a venue like this I guess they have read their target market perfectly.

Naan was virtually oil-free which, unlike the Whitechapel renditions, made it feel quite virtuous.

Finally we shared a kulfi for dessert (again, quite inoffensive in its flavourings.)

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