In all the years that I have lived in the neighbourhood, I have never been to Bombay Brasserie, but that is not to say that I haven't wanted to. Finally managed to have dinner there recently and my only disappointment was that I didn't try it sooner and with Chef Oberoi present to host the meal, I know I couldn't possibly in better hands!
The dining room is vast with the opulence of a 5-star hotel ball room; decadent with oversized chandeliers suspended from the ceiling that twinkle in the dimly lit dining area. Both rooms are full of diners, mostly larger groups as well as quite a few groups of Texan business men; their familiar slow-drawl accent faintly twanging in the background and making the room look like a scene from ‘Dallas’ (minus the gallon hats, of course). In another corner of the room, a famous Hollywood actor tucks into a discreet meal as he hides behind his handle-bar moustache whilst fellow diner ogle him.
The food at Bombay Brasserie is quite unique and the combinations, definitely brave. Boldly spiced seared scallops with more than a subtle kick inferno of chilli spice and turmeric, which despite its ferocious heat, worked surprisingly well although my mouth did take some time to reciver from the inferno. Tandoori Halibut on a bed of spicy prawns, crispy coated Tandoori chicken with curry leaves and dainty little potato cakes with a yogurt and sweet tamarind sauce, were all superb. The spicing was a little more subtle with these dishes than the fiery scallop dish but every bit as enjoyable.
Main courses included a perfectly cooked chicken biryani, golden with saffron and turmeric spice, studded with tender chunks of flavoursome chicken and a chicken tikka dishes with a tomato sauce and pickled baby red onions was beyond superb, a really great flavour sensation with the pickling on the baby onions which really complimented the spice layering of the dish.
Desserts are always my least favourite part of the meal in an Indian restaurant. Modern Indian desserts don't cut it for me and this was no exception. A trio of minature desserts including a creme brulee (of sorts) with some kind of spiced cake slices layered into it, reminded me of a bread and butter pudding and was somewhat enjoyable but the orange scented sticky pancake was not my cup of 'chai' at all and the chocolate shell filled with some type of creamy, sweet curd with cardamoms did very little for my tastebuds either. I am, at heart, a savoury girl really and after so many starters and mains, I was perfectly happy with the meal and would whole-heartedly recommend Bombay Brasserie to anyone looking for a glamourous ambience for an Indian meal. I will be going back there again to try the famous weekend buffet lunch (which I'm told you have to book weeks in advance), which is priced very reasonably at £22.00 per person. Certainly a more budget-friendly way to enjoy Bombay Brasserie as the prices can be as eye watering as some of the chillies, but with quality such as this, it's not unreasonables to expect prices to match.