As a nation, the Brits love curry. Luckily there's an amazing array of quality Indian restaurants in London. We've highlighted the city's best options for when you're in a hurry for a curry.
Belgravia's Amaya is owned by the team behind successful Indian restaurants, Chutney Mary and Veeraswamy. Head Chef Karunesh Khanna is one of a small number of Indian chefs to have won a Michelin star. He has been working as head chef of Amaya since it opened in 2004. The service is superb and the Indian food is non-traditional as Amaya specializes in Indian grilling and kebabs. The food is designed to be shared and comes in tasting portions; 6-8 of these plates is equivalent to a two-course meal.
The Cinnamon Club opened in 2001 in a Grade II-listed former Westminster Library. The wood-paneled main dining room has a book-lined gallery around the room and offers contemporary grandeur with a nod to genteel colonialism.
The style is Indian haute cuisine and the restaurant uses modern recipes with the intention of revolutionizing the way Indian cooking is viewed in the UK. Dishes are made with seasonal ingredients and spices and the menu features some of the most creative Indian meals in town. The restaurant's wine expert advises on wine pairings from an impressive 200-strong list and the Wine and Spice evenings are eternally popular.
This is London's first Bombay cafe, based on the popular eateries in the Indian city in the first half of the 20th century, opened by immigrants from Persia. It's where rich businessmen rubbed shoulders with sweaty taxi-wallahs and courting couples gazed at one another over marble-topped tables.
The checkerboard tiles and oak paneling, along with marble-topped tables and mismatched chairs, make Dishoom a quirky venue. Look at the pictures on the wall as many are family photos from one of the owners including a photo of his grandmother that was sent to his grandfather to introduce her before their marriage.
The food is not your standard curry-fest and the all-day menu includes kebabs and salads as well as healthy roti wraps. The Bombay Breakfast Club gives a twist to the classic British breakfast with a cup of chai and Bacon Naan Rolls.
There are restaurants in Covent Garden, Soho, Shoreditch, and King's Cross.
Masala Zone is a chain of Indian restaurants with locations across London. It's owned by MW Eat, the company behind Amaya, Veeraswamy and Chutney Mary. Masala Zone restaurants have contemporary and colorful Indian interiors and serve very popular and tasty Indian cuisine at affordable prices. Their Thalis (stainless steel platters loaded with small plates of Indian home food-style dishes) are hugely popular.
This isn't a fancy restaurant, but the canteen of the London Indian YMCA is open to the public and serves bargain food. It's where real Indian people eat and it's very well-priced. The Dining Hall is not open all day and evening so check their website for opening times.
This family-run Indian restaurant in Whitechapel opened in 1974. They actually serve traditional Pakistani Punjabi food that is 100% Halal.
Established in 1926, Veeraswamy is the UK's oldest Indian restaurant. It underwent an 80th birthday renovation and has continued to be very popular. There is a set price menu as otherwise, it can be quite pricey to eat here. The food is considered fresh and high quality and has many returning customers.