Pretty much all of the top Indian food I’ve eaten in my life was somewhere in London. There is Brick Lane, which houses dozens and dozens of Indian restaurants, as well as the hundreds of others that litter the city. Rather than hit up one of my favorite ones (Rasa Samudra — with numerous locations), we opted for a fancy, former Michelin starred restaurant Zaika. While appearing to be very high end and providing good service, the food is modern and not your standard fare.
To start we tried a crispy softshell crab with squid ink noodles, squid ink, cream and salmon roe as well as vegetarian kabobs which feature cheddar and cream marinated broccoli; paneer tikka with apricot stuffing; portabella mushroom with a chilli-coriander marinade Both were superb, with my favorites being the crab itself and the spicy mushroom.
For our entrees I went with the Lamb shank and masala ratatouille with mint and lamb sauce. It comes with plenty of extra sauce and was fork tender, as it should be. I normally wouldn’t think of ratatouille at an Indian restaurant, but the flavor was not like that of any I’ve had before.
The Vegetarian had one of the three offered veggie mains which was a stuffed pimento and potato with a tomato coriander sauce. This may have been the dish of the night.
If that wasn’t enough, we also added the lentil duo which was creamy black lentils and tempered yellow lentils. The yellow were pretty standard, but the black were out of this world.
Overall, if you are looking to step outside the standard Indian food box, and try some really interesting, albeit expensive, Indian food, look no further. They certainly deserve their Michelin star back.