Monday, May 26, 2008
La Porte des Indes, London
This is a charming and upscale Indian restaurant in the heart of central London. Seconds away from bustling Oxford St, but you would never have guessed it. La Porte des Indes specializes in Indian food with a French twist. The cuisine in the former French colonies of Pondicherry in the south, Chandannagore in Bengal etc, is heavily French-influenced. So this figures prominently in the menu. However, other popular dishes are also available. Entrees from the a la carte menu are a tad on the pricey side. A three course set menu is around 34 pounds. But you pay for the exquisite colonial ambiance, the immaculate service, and the chance to eat on tables with pristine white and starched tablecloths, laden with silver plated cutlery.
Aah, but there is a more affordable option, without having to sacrifice your exposure to any of the above. Sundays is buffet lunch day, when La Porte puts on a lavish 'all you can eat' extravaganza for only 25 pounds per person. You start downstairs where there is a delectable range of mouthwatering appetizers, both vegetarian and non-vegetarian. You then walk up the strategically-positioned spiral staircase, allowing you to spy on the other customers, before you begin to sample the entrees. Don't forget to try the fresh coconut juice, which you drink from the coconut directly. It is unbelievably refreshing!
The place is usually full on Sundays with families celebrating birthdays, friends celebrating an engagement, or simply the single diner who wants to have well prepared Indian food. There is also a live jazz band to entertain you while you enjoy the food. The band was excellent the last time I went. However, my family have been entertained by an Indian Elvis on one occasion, who was reported to have been pretty good too.
There you have it - if you're in London on a Sunday, and would like to try different and delicious Indian food in a lovely setting, make a date with La Porte Des Indes. It is best to make a reservation beforehand. Click here for more details.