You may have heard about Gymkhana – a ripple of excitement has buzzed amongst the foodies for a while now reminding us of our love of all things India. Inspired by Colonial Indian gymkhana clubs (where the toast of high society created a new, exciting British Raj glamour), the setting is exactly as it should be. Settle into a leather booth downstairs or book in to the slightly lighter atmosphere upstairs, where glass partitions, creaking wooden floors and wicker chairs take you back to a colonial age.
Prepare to be impressed. This is Indian food and sophisticated beverages at its very best with a Michelin star now to boot. Start off with a drink at the upstairs bar (the cocktail list is refreshingly avant-garde – don’t expect traditional cocktails here, they simply won’t make them). We loved the Tequila Peacock fusing watermelon with sweet basil, creating a surprisingly easy-to-drink thirst-quencher.
Start off with light and simple Punjabi Samosas and then feast your eyes on the mains; work your way through Ceylon Jheenga curry (a delicious combination of grilled king prawns with lemongrass and other spices), melt-in-the-mouth Lamb Shank Rojan Josh and deliciously fragrant Achari Chicken Tikka, but be sure to leave room for the Dal and vegetable side dishes on offer.
The service here is truly exceptional. Many of the staff hail from India and their knowledge and hospitality knows no bounds. And after starters, mains and a sneaky chocolate samosa, we were surprised to learn that we weren’t rolling around on the floor in agony. Portion sizes are cleverly controlled so you eat just enough but avoid the traditional gluttony that an Indian meal can sometimes bring on. We went home, all waxing lyrical that it was one of the finest Indian meals we ever had the pleasure of eating. We will be back.