Thursday, July 18, 2013

Indian Food on Brick Lane at The Monsoon

Poppadums
London is abundant with Indian restaurants, which a wander down Brick Lane confirms, as a multitude of Indian restaurants compete and vie for business. Their strategy is aggressive, with staff standing outside their respective restaurants trying to woo perspective customers by offering them a variety of different deals from free alcoholic beverages, to a percentage of the total bill, anything to get you through their restaurant doors. We opted to stop and try The Monsoon, an Indian restaurant who promised not only one free alcoholic beverage per person but also 30% off our total food bill.

Plain and Coconut Naan
Their menu was extensive with pages upon pages of options, so we opted between the 6 of us to try a wide of offerings. We started with poppadums that came with three different dipping sauces including a mint yogurt, mango chutney and a spicy chili and onion sauce. The poppadums themselves were extremely light and crispy. The mint yogurt sauce tasted subtly of mint, while the mango chutney sauce was very sweet and the chili and onion sauce was mildly spicy. Unable to decide between two different kinds of the naan bread, we ordered both including a plain naan that tasted slightly sweet but was unfortunately very greasy. Meanwhile the coconut naan was slightly sweeter and denser than the regular naan but had a nice and distinctive coconut taste with bits of shredded coconut throughout.
A myriad of dishes

Of note is that unlike in Canada where it seems all of the curries are made with cream, there are no creams in the majority of their dishes here, also their dishes were smaller, allowing you to try a wider variety of items. Next we tried the pakora dal, a chickpea dish that was very thick and mildly spicy, the aloo gobi made of cauliflower and potatoes was solid, spicy and hearty, while the saag aloo, a potato and spinach dish was a nice reprieve from all the other spicy dishes.

The rogan josh had a very thick sauce but wasn’t overly spicy with tender bits of lamb, while the chicken dopiaza was disappointing, filled with pieces of chicken that had been over cooked so they were dry, which was the opposite of the chicken saag where the chicken was juicy and well seasoned. Lastly the prawn biryani was quite hot from the curry, with large chunks of vegetable, but we wished there were more prawns.

Overall there were some really good food and some decent food, but considering the abundant number of Indian restaurants in London in general, you could probably randomly pick one and get equally food. However, if you do happen to be on Brick Lane and wander by The Monsoon, do give it a try, the food was much lighter and tastier than a lot of Indian restaurants we’ve tried in Edmonton, AB, Canada.

The Monsoon
78 Brick Lane
London, UK  E1 6RL
011 44 020 7375 1567

Monsoon on Urbanspoon

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