Inside The Marble Arch Restaurant Showcasing Upmarket Indian Fare And Gorgeous Cocktails

There's a reason why a curry is England's national dish. We Brits? We absolutely love Indian fare. But there's more to it than your bog-standard rogan josh and chicken bhuna. London is awash with upmarket restaurants, championing the flavours of the South Asian country, including Chourangi in Marble Arch. This particular dining destination had piqued my interest with its Calcuttan street food-inspired plates. If you don't know much about the region, it's picked up influences from the many cultures that have passed through it, including Chinese, French, Portuguese and more. So, with that in mind, I couldn't wait to try this place out.

Chourangi Marble Arch Restaurant | DesignMyNight

This Indian restaurant in London is made all the more atmospheric at night.

It was a cold, rainy day, and I found solace in this beautiful restaurant just off the bustling high street. The evening offered an intimate ambience, showcasing warm lighting, walls adorned with ornate patterns, abstract artworks and monochromatic photographs - made all the more cosy by the jazzy tunes playing in the background and the low murmur of other diners tucking into their suppers. After a quick chat with the hostess, I headed to my seat - a green leather booth with a stylish rattan chair opposite. Here, I awaited my friend, who was running late. Typical.

Oh well, this just gave me a chance to explore the cocktail menu. I decided to go for the Date Above The Clouds (£14). Without overexaggerating, this was stunning, mixing bourbon, amaretto, egg white, lemon juice and jaggery syrup. It came in an ice-cold glass, conjuring up an almost fig-like flavour. When my friend finally arrived, she went for the Glowing Passion (£14). A combo of vodka, passion fruit, vanilla and passion fruit spice jam, this was a bit like a grown-up porn star martini.

Chourangi Indian Restaurant London | DesignMyNight

For any vegans out there, I highly recommend the croquettes.

To fill our rumbling tums, we ordered a couple of starters. The banana flower croquettes (£11.50) were huge, with a deliciously crunchy coating and a moreish, mildly spiced filling. The texture was actually pretty meaty, despite being vegan - my pal even mistook these for pulled pork. We also went for a bowl of the tangra chilli paneer (£13.50). This type of dish is always a winner with me - I love the fusion of Chinese and Indian flavours. The paneer came beautifully soft, contrasted by the nice crunch from the peppers and onions. But I had one issue with this plate - it was both huge and addictive, so I accidentally filled up on it.

Chourangi Indian Fine Dining London | DesignMyNight

Every single dish was packed full of flavour and made with care. 

But alas, the show must go on; our next dish, the steamed seabass paturi (£24), came served in a banana leaf with coconut and mustard. While the fish was juicy and tender, the mustard was too overpowering for me and I didn't really enjoy this. However, my friend said she was surprised by the unique and complementary marriage of flavours, devouring both of ours. 

Thankfully, the Calcutta chicken biryani (£22.50) more than redeemed this for me. As a gorgeous combo of gloriously juicy chicken, saffron, sundried rose petals, vetiver, potatoes egg and rice, it paired nicely with the BNR mutton curry (£24.50). This was one of the Durga Puja specials, made up of braised lamb, black cardamom, radhuni seeds tamarind and ginger. The meat just melted away in your mouth and the fragrant, thick saw was incredibly rich and powerful.

The DesignMyNight Digest

While I'm no stranger to a good ol' biriyani, a lot of the dishes I had at Chourangi were new to me - and I really enjoyed diving deeper into Calcuttan cuisine. Though the seabass was not to my taste, everything else we had tasted absolutely delicious - especially the croquettes and the mutton curry. The cocktails were also sublime, so if you're looking for a cute spot for a date night, I think we found it right here in Marble Arch.

  💰 The damage: Just over £120 for two.

  📍  The location: 3 Old Quebec Street, London, W1H 7AF

  👌 Perfect for: Slinky date nights and special occasions.

 ⭐ Need to know: Make sure to get the tangra chilli paneer.


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