November 29, 2009

Cafe Spice Namaste

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My mobile phone company recently gave me a two-for-one dinner voucher. Most of the qualifying venues were high-end fast food chains, but looking through the list I spotted a little gem – Cafe Spice Namaste. I had heard a few things about this Indian restaurant near Tower Bridge, so was keen to give it a try. We went along on a Wednesday night and there were quite a few people there, suggesting a booking would definitely be necessary on more popular nights. The polite head waiter spent some time checking the voucher as we were apparently the first people to use such a voucher there. Once that was sorted out we ordered.

The menu was a little different to the standard Indian. For a start it was much shorter, just a few dishes, rather than the numerous curry combinations found elsewhere. We had poppadoms for starters followed by lamb shank and spiced partridge with naan and a potato/cauliflower/pea side dish. The food was very good. The poppadoms and chutneys were noticeably nicer than other places. My lamb shank was beautifully cooked and the slightly spiced sauce very more’ish – when I finished my plate was clean. The off-the-bone partridge was equally good. The portions were a good size and after that lot (plus some beer) we were too full for dessert. Although seeing the Belgian chocolate icecream at the next table tempted us, we did not waver and got the bill.

The service was very fast and efficient. It was more expensive than other Indian places, but also far better. Although, it was by no means expensive by general London standards, a little over £60 before the voucher discount (and including service). For comparison, the next best Indian restaurant I’ve been is Babur. Without a discount Cafe Spice Namaste is a little more expensive than Babur, but with better food (thanks to the poppadoms) and easily better service. This is definitely a place I’ll be visiting again.

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