Review: Trishna, Marylebone

Broccoli glory

Broccoli glory

You know, it’s possible I’m running out of things to say. The last few reviews have been hard to write. It’s very easy to dive straight into what a nice dining room it was, what we had for starter, main, dessert, and then a summary. But that’s not satisfying (to write or to read!). Anything worth reading has to have a story, even a review. There needs to be a hook, a theme, a narrative, whatever. Anything really, just not a straight description of what the place looked like and what you ate. Unless you can make it bloody hilarious. I’m not that funny.

Maybe I should just talk about anything that bugged me recently? Like, getting a bite to eat on the South Bank before a show. Crazy. 6:15 in the evening. Honest Burger: 30 minute wait. Ping Pong: 20 minute wait. Brasserie bloody Blanc: 25 minute wait. Pizza f*cking Express for f*cks sake! Queuing for tables! It’s sad enough that there’s nowhere remotely inspiring to eat in what is blatantly a major entertainment district, it’s just hilarious that even the relentless chain restos there are all full to bursting at 6:15 of a Thursday evening.

We had some sad square slices of ham and mushroom pizza in the Royal Festival Hall cafe. They were pants.

Corn and coconut tikki

Corn and coconut tikki

Not Trishna, though. Trishna is still bloody brilliant. The dining room is a lovely den of a place in a Marylebone side street, with cosy booths and tables. They look after you very well and there’s a fun selection of classy tea-based cocktails to start you off. My Manhattan was fragranced with muscatel tea and quince syrup. Mmmm.

We start with veggies – a broccoli for me and sweetcorn for Maureen. No, but wait, these were awesome. My broccoli was impregnated with fully spicy/yogurty gunk and then roasted to a char-edged perfection of brassica-y goodness. The bright red hot/sour chutney paired with it beautifully, so did the golden flaked almonds. Maureen’s sweetcorn and coconut tikki was a delicious patty, crisp on the outside. We agreed that it probably could have benefitted from some kinda sauce or dip to balance the dry texture, but the taste was bright and spot-on.

Maureen plumped for a mutton biryani, which came full of superb biryani flavour but did rather need the pink peppercorn raita to balance the dryness again. I will confess we’ve had a couple of better biryanis recently. My lamb curry has a classic rich gravy, full of earthy spices without ever getting fierce. The accompaniments were great: mustardy potatoes and a warming lake of golden daal.

Ultimately this was “just” a very nice curry. But everything was cooked with finesse and love. No shortcuts here. My gulab lassi was absolutely made with genuine rose petals, as much as Maureen’s mango lassi was blended with real honey mangoes. And both of them tasted as fragrant as anything without being overly sweet. That’s where the Michelin star comes in. At lunch our two courses were £25 each before drinks, and we waddled out stuffed and happy. So that’s got to be good.

Maybe they could open another restaurant over in Waterloo?

Curry spread

Curry spread

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