Monday, June 10, 2019

[Chaiwala] Bollywood romance with modern Indian dishes

Society and the food industry scene is rapidly changing so is the way food is served.
We are now in an era where we are seeing a rapid change in society with lots of old things being scrapped, new things built

With lots of cuisines, they are either going backwards or going forwards to get the limelight so it is all about going retro or reinventing dishes.

At Chaiwala, the location couldn't be more perfect as it is located where Zafran used to be.

The restaurant is big and not a spot is under decorated.
You get to Chaiwala by going through Hugger Mugger another successful English bar set in the 1970s with cocktails inspired by David Attenborough, Pink Floyd etc.
I love the way everything is so different once you pass the doors, it is like entering another world yet it feels like home in London especially the living room corner with an old working TV set, dining table and photos on the walls.
Before you get to the dining area, you will see an open kitchen where everything is going on,

When you enter the main restaurant you are greeted with this long table with lots of pretty dangling fabrics and beads above it.

As well as the decor, the menu is humorous yet detailed.

Started with THE MAGIC LAMP which was the beginning of an exciting adventure concocted with rum and citrus.

Being clueless on what to eat, we had the  Dabbawala tasting Menu which includes a selection of signatures from Chaiwala.
The guy who served us was extremely knowledgeable and will ask your likes and dislikes as well as your relationship with spices.

Started with the Pani Puri: These are a must try as they are crispy balls filled with potato and chickpeas.
You eat them by pouring Jal jeera in it.
I love Jal Jeera which is tangy and appetizing laced with cumin.
The challenge was trying to stuff the whole thing in my mouth to get all the flavours!!

Aloo Tikka Chaat: This is another one of my favourite, spiced potato cake topped with delicious yoghurt and chutney followed by the bursting sweetness of the pomegranate seeds.

Moving on to the Modern dishes, the Mexi Thali which is a twist of Mexican cuisine.
It was tender pieces of slow cooked beef served on Indian Tortillas.

The following dishes will amaze you as being a fine Indian Restaurant, Chaiwala serves seafood which you will take your taste buds to the next level.

Malabar scallops (HK$190) are kerala-style Hokkaido scallops, with coconut and ginger sauce, fresh mango and curry leaf.

Lobster nerulli (HK$390), charred lobster with South Indian spices, tomato and pearl onions, lobster claw rice and vegetable poriyal.

The lobster dish was simply lavish and different while the vegetable poriyal cooled the palate down with a crunch as it had lots of grated coconut.

As well as seafood, curries are a must for a complete Indian meal experience.

For curries, there was Kerala Fish curry and Old Dehli Butter chicken served with truffle Naan and rice.
The butter chicken was thick and rich complemented by the truffle naan which was topped with generous shavings of truffle just like they do with pasta at PICI!

The Tandoori range here is more than just chicken with lamb chops and fish.
I loved the lamb chops which were soft and came off the bone easily.

Finished with the Wagyu Seekh Kebab which was beefy yet not overpowered by the spices.

Although I was stuffed, dessert was a blow as it was my favourite carrot cake with delicious buttercream frosting topped with crispy carrots and beetroot.
The carrot cake was quite a substantial portion that will satisfy your sweet tooth as the first mouthful will send you craving for more.

The final act was the Chai tea latte which is poured at a height with skill into the cup so that fine layers of bubbles are formed.
It was mildly spiced and a great finish to the journey.

The evening ended with a book and you will definitely be back for the next story!

Chailwala is definitely the place to go for a memorable night out with great food and vibes.
Although they have brunches and lunches, I recommend going there in the evening as the darker ambiance makes it more memorable.

Basement, No. 43-55, Wyndham Street, Central,

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