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Inside Dishoom’s New Art Deco and Jazz-Inspired Kensington Restaurant

A first-look at the brand’s fifth London site which opens on 15 December

Inside Dishoom in Kensington
John Carey

It is billed as “An homage to two of Bombay's loveliest stories: Art Deco and Jazz.” This is the fifth (London) and newest site for Dishoom — the Indian casual dining chain launched on St. Martins Lane, Covent Garden in 2010. The site will open officially on 15 December following a two week theatre production of Bombay Night at the Roxy — “an immersive Indian noir set in Bombay’s glamorous jazz age.”

The latest of the brand’s Bombay-influenced ‘Irani cafes’ — announced on Eater London in August — will open inside the Barkers building, premises best known for housing London’s biggest Whole Foods store, but also for its Art Deco architecture, which matched the group’s new aesthetic ambition.

The vast 7,500 sq ft site, Dishoom’s first in west London, will accommodate 200, with further space for 50 in the Permit Room bar. It is furnished with over 100 pieces of period furniture, artwork and light fittings sourced from Bombay.

John Carey

The owners said the design and story of the restaurant “is rooted in 1940s Bombay, when an unexpected form of Art Deco emerged: the first generation of modern Indian architects, buoyed by the prospect of Independence, redefined traditional Art Deco with a distinctly Indian accent.” It is said that “Bombay remains the world’s best example of Art Deco after Miami.”

John Carey

The Kensington special dish is a mutton pepper fry, “a speciality of south Indian kitchens.” Tender pieces of mutton are marinated in red chilli, ginger and garlic, cooked with black peppercorns and whole spices, then dressed with curry leaves and fresh lime. The dish is served with Malabar-style soft paratha.

Mutton pepper fry with paratha
Mutton pepper fry, Dishoom Kensington’s special
Helen Cathcart

The menu will of course feature a number of Dishoom’s classics, such as keema pau (which incorporates the pau buns and spiced mince; samosas; bhel; calamari; black dal; and the famous bacon naan roll, with spiced tomato sauce.

Clockwise from top: keema pau; samosas; bhel; calamari
Helen Cathcart

The site is also adjacent to the building occupied by two of the capital’s biggest newspaper publishers: DMG Media — The Daily Mail and Metro — and ESI Media, under which the London Evening Standard and Independent sit.

Opening hours are 8am to 11pm weekdays; 9am – 11pm weekends.

Dishoom

7 Boundary St, Shoreditch, Greater London E2 7JE +44 20 7420 9324 Visit Website

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