Chakra restaurant review, Kensington      

February 16, 2017

So it was off to swanky Kensington for my latest restaurant review. I was invited to try out Chakra restaurant, which offers Indian dishes with a hint of fusion.

Chakra is a cosy and intimate restaurant, kind of like Trishna in Bloomsbury. It has a small dining area, though I have been told that they will be creating some additional space downstairs.

Inside Chakra restaurant Kensington

As far as locations go, Chakra, being a stones-throw from Kensington High Street, is pretty convenient and well-heeled to boot. It’s also a relative newbie in the area, having been around for six months.

 

So here’s what we had:

Starters at Chakra restaurant   

Salmon tikka, lamb chops and samosa chaat starters

Samosa chaat. There was no way I couldn’t order this. Perhaps it was my days at uni in Leicester, or perhaps I have an inner Punjabi/Gujarati, but either way, I love my tamarind sauce and my tangy-hot Indian snacks. And the Chakra take on this classic vegetarian delight, featuring delicious potato-filled samosas and delicately spiced chickpeas, didn’t disappoint.

The lamb chops were also on point. Sometimes I find that Indian restaurants overcook their lamb and it can end up too chewy. Case in point was my dining experience at another popular Indian – Tayyabs – where there was more tough and chewy fat than succulent lamb. However, Chakra’s lamb was tender, with minimal fat.

Topping off a successful trio of starter choices, the salmon tikka was another hit. A particular bonus for me is that it didn’t taste too, well, Salmon-y. Weird though that sounds, I often find salmon fillets to be a little too strong. I think the good masala marinade managed to keep the fillets in check.

Mains at Chakra restaurant

Indian biryani and curry sauce

Given that we’d had a good fill of starters, we just about had room for two mains of black cod and chicken biryani.

The black cod was totally not what I’d expected. Misreading the menu, I was expecting the cod to be in a yoghurt-y buttery sauce, like a korma of sorts.

Black cod on a slate plate

However, it totally wasn’t. It has been cooked in a yoghurt marinade, but it is totally a piece of fish alone. So if you’re expecting a curry, this won’t be the dish for you.

But if you want a meaty, mild piece of fish, then you can’t go far wrong than the black cod. It wouldn’t look out of place on a European menu.

The biryani however fulfilled my spicy requirements. As a bonus, it wasn’t too greasy either. A winner was the pomegranate topped raita (yoghurt) on the side.

Dessert at Chakra restaurant

Being a good sport, I made room for dessert, but kept it simple with a black currant sorbet and a kulfi. The sorbet evoked mixed berry gelato memories from Rome (I was obsessed with that flavour), and the kulfi, a delicious solid Indian ice cream, was the perfect end to the meal.

Oh also, if you visit, order the nimbu pawn I drink, a lemony, salty pallete cleanser which is great for washing down the flavoursome food.

Chakra restaurant in a nutshell

Halal – yes

Price – starters range from £7.50 to £19.50. Mains between £10-£15

Great if… you want a slightly more upmarket Indian dining experience, or have a more delicate palate.

Not so great if… you want traditional curry house fayre. This ain’t that.

HalimaBobs

About the Author

HalimaBobs

I’m a British-Bengali Muslim mum-of-two. My pictures aren’t filtered and neither are my words. I’m not a makeup artist, chef or lifestyle guru. I’m just me, sharing honest beauty reviews for brown skin, halal restaurant finds, travel inspo, mum life hacks, easy Bengali recipes and more. If that’s your bag, keep reading!

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