You are probably thinking “yet another Indian restaurant” but Talli Joe is something very different to your usual curry joint with a casual, fun dining concept on Shaftesbury Avenue.
I picked it as a venue to catch up with one of my childhood friend N, and it turned out to be a fantastic location for a girly giggle and some cocktails.
The concept is half plates and cocktails, and the food is meant for sharing, which is fabulous as you get to try lots of different things. The small plates and half plates concept seems to be gathering momentum on the Indian food scene, with similar concepts from Gunpowder and Kricket, who have a second site opening soon.
For cocktails, N went for the Amma’s special, which was gin, cucumber, coriander, lime and sugar, and I went for the Bengal Mojito, which was white rum, Bengali lime, mint and jaggery syrup.
The mojito was really nice but omg N’s Amma’s special was so delicious, refreshing and easy to drink that even me, the mojito queen, had serious drink envy over her choice. The rest of the cocktails sounded amazing so will definitely be back to try them out.
We started off with Masala Papad (£2.00), while we caught up on life, and these were served rolled up and were very fresh, crunchy and tasty.
We picked a couple of dishes and starting with the Dhokla Salad (£4.50), this was an unusual twist to Dhokla as I know it, and a very welcome twist indeed. It went really well with the salad, and the dhokla was light and fluffy.
My absolute favourite, and the dish I just can’t stop raving on about, was the Kale Chaat (£4.50). It was seriously out of this world and a must order for everyone! The flavours that came through, combined with the crispy exterior were just decadent.
I fancied some lamb so we ordered the Kolahpuri Chaap (£4.50), which was marinated really well and had a melt in the mouth sensation.
This was the cutest presentation, the Bohri Chicken (£7.00), which was accompanied with a thepla. It went well really well and the chicken was full flavoured, well seasoned and cooked through perfectly.
Our final savoury dish was the Kochi Beef Fry (£9.50), which was really tasty and was served with a paratha.
What I really liked was that each dish had its distinguishing flavours, different combination of flavours and each was memorable in a good way.
For dessert we both went for the Black Gajar Halwa (£3.75), which was stunning!
The prices are really reasonable and the service is excellent. It would be a perfect pre-theatre (or clubbing) meal, due to its perfect location, and a really good venue to catch up with friends over some fun cocktails and delicious food.
For 2, we ordered just the right amount of dishes, and had a wonderful time.
The restaurant itself has a fun, modern vibe, and the food represents something very different to your usual curry houses.
The menu is not over complicated and there is a good balance between vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes, without there being too much of a choice. I felt that the quantity of the selection was just right.
It is a definite recommendation from me and I couldn’t fault the food or service in any way. Definitely order the Kale Chaat!
For more information, go to http://www.tallijoe.com