Nestled in the heart of the exclusive Mayfair district of London on Curzon Street, Matsya is a brand new Indian restaurant that officially opens its doors to the public on April 1st. I was invited to review the restaurant with my friend and fellow blogger Charli and as big fans of Indian cuisine we were extremely excited to get an early glimpse at their menu and get to try some new dishes.
Matsya, the fish, is one of the ten incarnations of the Hindu god Vishnu, and represents the beginning of life and a fresh start. In a world filled with traditional cooking and where classic dishes have made a large name for themselves, Matsya bring you Indian cooking but with a fresh approach, breathing new life into traditional favourites. The beauty of adapting to the new world is everything that Matsya embodies in their dishes.
According to legend, King Manu was washing his hands in a river when a little fish swam into his hands and begged him to save it. King Manu placed it in a jar, but the fish outgrew it very quickly and eventually had to be moved to the ocean. The fish thanked him and warned him that a great flood will occur in a week and will destroy all life. So, Manu built a boat, the fish towed it to a mountaintop and when the flood came, he survived along with some seeds of life to re-establish life on earth.
Prior to our visit we hadn’t actually looked at the menu so we were expecting a classic Indian and with our favourite Indian dishes in mind we arrived to find that this was the fanciest Indian restaurant that either of us had ever been to, but with a welcoming and comfy atmosphere. We were asked where we would like to sit, which for us is a big thing because I hate being shoved in a corner when there is loads of room and sometimes you just want to have a bit more privacy whilst eating out. We chose a cosy looking booth at the front of the restaurant underneath a stunning chandelier which caught the light in just the right way.
We were given a glass of Prosecco on arrival and met the staff, including the chef who went above and beyond by coming up from the kitchen to personally go through the menu with me as I have an allergy to nuts and they wanted to be sure I would have no trouble with the dishes I chose. For the starter we went for a simple plate of poppadums each, which came with a trio of chutneys including Mango Chutney, Mint Yoghurt and a spicy sauce. My go to Indian meal is a Chicken Tikka Masala so for my main I opted for the Chicken Tikka Roulade with Makhani Sauce, a sweet and sour sauce with butter and cream, flavoured with dried fenugreek powder, with rice. The sauce had a slight spicy kick to it but I was loving the flavour combination and the chicken was extremely moist and tasted incredible.
Charli went for the Kashmiri Lamb Harissa, lamb cooked to mash with saffron and fried onions served with Kashmiri Naan and rice. Our main dishes were brought in under steamed domes so they came out piping hot and the smell was amazing when they lifted the lids. On the side of our mains we had a Tandoori Roti and the Split Personality Dal Bowl, two bowls of different coloured lentils. The food was incredible and we were both completely stuffed so when we were asked what we would like for dessert we said to each that we’d have a look at the menu but then politely decline due to having no more room.
Did you know that it’s been scientifically proven that the chemical signals produced by the stomach to say we are full can no longer override the brain’s pleasure centres, so of course once we were given the dessert menus we both couldn’t help but try one each. I went for the Orange and Jaggery Butter Crepes, a really rich citrus flavoured dessert so if you are a fan of overly sweet and fruity flavours this is the dessert for you because it was absolutely gorgeous. Charli went for the Espresso Rasgullas, Peanut ‘Chikki’ and Salted Caramel Ice Cream, espresso flavoured ball-shaped dumplings of china and semolina dough cooked in a light syrup and a traditional Indian sweet made from peanuts and jaggery with ice cream.
If you are looking for a new restaurant to try out I would definitely recommend Matsya and if you can’t decide what to go for from the vast options on the menu they have different tasting menu options. The Shivalik Taster is a 5 course tasting menu, which cost £45.99, and lets you chose an item from the soups, salads, grills and tawas, a main and a dessert. The Himanchal Taster is a 6 course tasting menu for £51.99 which consists of the same options but instead of a grill or a tawa you can choose a dish from both options.