It’s got to be said, we rarely go out for an Indian. If I remember correctly, the only time we have been for one was at a not so charming Indian restaurant above a pub in Borough High Street, and my gentleman companion ordered an insane amount of food and only ate a third of it.
When we saw that Trishna (based in Marylebone right next door to Roganic) had recently received a Michelin star, we thought the time had come to try some fine dining Indian style.
The restaurant was split into two sections and we were seated in the second room which was bright and airy. White painted brickwork with bright framed posters made for a simple but pleasant dining room.
The menu (which was in a leather case that was double the size of the actual menu) offered a very attractive sounding lunch bites menu – 2 courses at £15.50, 3 courses at £18.50, 4 at £21.50 or 5 courses for £24.50. Reasonably priced matching wines were also available. We ended up ordering 3 courses each with an extra dessert course and we were totally stuffed and couldn’t finish it all.
Some complimentary poppadoms with two chutney’s (sweet mango and spicy tomato) started our feast. The mango chutney was heavenly as were the poppadoms; they were crunchier than any I’ve ever tasted before.
The potato chat (chickpeas, tamarind, sweet yoghurt, shallots and chilli) looked very pretty. Now, I hate chickpeas, but after eating this I couldn’t stop singing their praises. The crunchy mini roast potatoes were also heavenly – this was a great start.
The quail 65 (chatpatta spices and mango coriander chutney) was tiny succulent legs of quail in a light spiced batter. The chutney was really refreshing and had a generous squirt of lime in there too – seriously flavoursome.
What followed was a veritable feast of dishes which all arrived at once. The seafood biryani (basmati rice, sea bass, shellfish, fresh herbs and cucumber raita) had a generous amount of prawns and scallops nestled amongst the rice. It was absolutely delicious.
The tandoori baby chicken (chicken leg chat with herb chutney) was cooked to perfection. It was served with some crispy shredded potato which was a pleasant contrast to the succulent chicken.
The paneer tikka (fenugreek leaf and corn chat) was very unusual. Paneer is a non-melting Indian cheese which we’ve never tried before but it tasted lovely – very creamy which contrasted the spices beautifully.
The Hariyali bream was covered in a green chilli and coriander coating served alongside tomato kachumber. Beneath the spicy coating was a perfectly cooked piece of bream which was delicate and flakey.
If all this food wasn’t enough it was served alongside complimentary hyderabadi dal, spinach corn, a bread basket (which was 4 flatbreads – there wasn’t a basket in sight) and basmati rice. My eyes nearly popped out of my head when I saw all this food. Everything was wonderful – I couldn’t fault a thing,
Even though we were close to feeling painfully full – I ordered the cardamom kheer which was a cold Indian rice pudding for dessert. Steeped in plenty of cardamom and topped with crumbled pistachios it was a pleasant and not too heavy way to end a mammoth lunch.
Service was a little hit and miss – one of our waiters knew everything there was to know about the food and was very friendly but another waiter would place the dishes down and describe the wrong thing – he didn’t seem to know what he was doing. On the whole though, we were very well looked after.
We really did feel like our lunch at Trishna was a bargain. The individual dishes were full of flavour and ever since going, I’ve really craved to go back again. It wasn’t exactly fine dining Indian style like I originally imagined – but it was bloomin’ tasty food.