Trishna: Best posh Indian for quite some time (March 2015)

Trishna’s website proclaims that this is “not your average curry night.” Such an assertion speaks of self-deprecation and a recent evening here saw our (high) expectations comfortably surpassed. Trishna (owned by the same team as the currently popular Gymkhana) deservedly merits its Michelin star and we loved the sheer inventiveness and taste-sensations of the food. Admittedly my comrade and I eat a lot of Indian meals, but from our point of view, Trishna far exceeded the likes of the Cinnamon Club, Tamarind or Benares. Indeed, it was perhaps most reminiscent of Gaggan Anand’s eponymous restaurant in Bangkok (visited in September 2013), ranked one of the fifty best places to dine in the world. In both, one is taken on a culinary journey across the Indian subcontinent. None of the traditional is found here and our seven-course tasting menu saw no disappointment across any of the dishes. This achievement is all the more notable given that I opted for the omnivorous option and my comrade for the vegetarian one. Even in posh Indian restaurants, the vegetarian selection is often something of an after-thought yet my often hard-to-please comrade was as effusive as me in her praise. My dishes included soft-shell crab, king prawn, sea bream, quail and guinea fowl, each coated with or accompanied by a pitch-perfect form of spice. Beware, the spice intensity is quite high (read, hot) here, but the wonderful satisfaction of a tingling tongue is hard to beat. Trishna also excelled itself in pairing wines with the food – not always an easy feat with Indian. While there were some predictable appearances such as a Schloss Johanisberg Riesling, the inclusion of a Bandol was a masterstroke and the sommelier also showed some interesting choices from Austria. We stayed for just under three hours and were the penultimate guests to leave the restaurant, but at no stage did we feel rushed or pressured and while the service was not outstanding (perhaps a bit more passion in explaining the dishes when brought to the table would help), it was very good. We will definitely be returning.