London

La Porte des Indes review

Out Of Office Magazine 07 Nov 2014

Dawn Murden reviews La Porte des Indes in London’s Mayfair, near Marble Arch tube station.

 

When we arrived on the doorstep of La Porte des Indes we were not prepared for what lay beyond the cloakroom down the marble staircase. We were really taken by surprise because from the outside the restaurant does not look like much, but inside it is a palace. Inside this metropolis you almost forget you’re in a crowded city and feel transported by the palm trees, indoor 40ft water fall fountain and the traditional Indian dress of the waitresses and waiters.

Actually the location is a former Edwardian ballroom, acquired by the restaurant in 1996. And not only does it boast a spacious restaurant but there is a jungle bar and a number of private rooms available for hire, all decorated with antique Indian artefacts.

On the menu there is not a tikka massala in sight. ‘La Porte des Indes’ literally translated means ‘gateway to India’ and the dishes are Gallic-influenced, representative of Pondicherry, a former French colony in India, dating back to the 19th century. The executive chef Mehernosh Mody and his wife spent several months there researching the traditional cuisine of the French-Creole people. This hard work gives La Porte’ a unique and varied menu. And it’s worth mentioning if you want to learn how to cook these dishes they do operate cooking classes.

The brand has proved successful, with locations in Brussels and Dubai, as well as London. And in the halls, on the way to the bathrooms, in the London restaurant are photos telling a story of a popular eatery often visited by A-list celebrities, from Hollywood film stars to politicians.

After a speciality G&T, we opted for the sample-style Menu Maison which meant we got to try a little bit of everything. For starters the highlights were the Parsee Fish: fillets of sole encased in mint and coriander chutney lightly steamed in banana leaves, and the Murgh Malai Kebab: chicken tikkas marinated with cream cheese, mace and fresh green peppercorns, and for mains it had to the Barra Lamb Chops and the Poulet Rouge – all washed down with a delightful Côtes du Rhône, Domaine Les Aphillantes, France. To finish we had a tasty trio of desserts, and the highlight of this was a rich chocolate fondant.

What? A special Indian restaurant in London with an atmosphere and menu you will not soon forget.

Why choose La Porte des Indes? It’s a unique experience that you will remember. Why not impress your clients by hosting a special event here in one of the private rooms?