A vibrant personality in the Indian street food scene, the chef known as Urban Rajah has travelled to the high-class venue Lanes of London to share his spice adventure with Park Lane's discerning diners. The incredibly moustachioed chef currently holds a spot on the Food Hero section of the menu, a regularly rotating guest dish. Is this the taste sensation Mayfair has been waiting for, or will the clientele pass on this chance to experience the flavours of the Indian sub-continent?
Any restaurant held in the late Edwardian mansion block on Park Lane naturally holds a certain old world elegance that feels effortlessly cool. Conveniently located on the corner of Park Lane, the restaurant feels exclusive – even from the outside – the kind of place that definitely gets Instagrammed, a lot. Upon entering the décor is all dark grain woods, British racing green and immaculate silverware. The moment you glance at the menu, however, you can tell the service is going to be refreshingly modern.
The Food & Drink
Like every establishment should, the menu featured a selection of negronis. I opted for the aged negroni, while my girlfriend chose a truly delicious South African white from Stellenbosch (which at only £4 was a steal!). The Antica formula and aged cherry gave the negroni less of a bitter edge, making it incredibly easy to drink. There was also a good selection of inventive cocktails - particularly the Brick Lane Bruv - which included a dash of the on-tap Meantime beer and Paul John Brilliance Whiskey.
The Urban Rajah dish takes prime place on the Lanes of London menu; the iconic purple and orange silhouette of Urban Rajah and his famous moustache making it an eye-catching choice. The four street food dishes offer a variety of unique tastes and favours. Tender minced lamb kebabs, tempura cheese (yes you heard that right), potato cutlets and a beaker full of crispy whitebait. The platter also sat nicely alongside a rich variety of world dishes that stretched from wiener schnitzel to ale battered fish and even crispy soft shell crab.
For a Friday it was surprisingly quiet, a few groups chatted away in the corners while the restaurant was primarily dominated by couples lingering over a few well-deserved drinks and finger food; perfect conditions for the Urban Rajah dish to thrive. The service, as you might expect, was flawless. The waitresses were keen to check everyone was enjoying themselves, frequently returning to fill our water glasses and happily recommending items from the menu.
The Urban Rajah dish fits in neatly with the feel of Lanes of London, which offers a variety of dishes from India that could be ordered to complement the fare. At £12 for the platter, the meal offers a chance to dip your toes into the rich world of Indian street food while relaxing in the elegant surrounds of a truly iconic part of London.