Moving to a new country is an enormous challenge for anybody. Getting used to the different cultures, expectations and traditions can make a person feel isolated. However, one of the ways in which newcomers to Britain can remind themselves of home is through the huge range of restaurants to be found widely throughout the country. Even villages will often boast an establishment offering a taste from around the world, whilst cities and larger towns will play host to a range of dining experiences.
TransferGo helps people to settle in their new town or city in many ways. As well as making the process of sending money back home simpler and more straightforward, we provide lots of information to make those early days as smooth as possible.
One of the many ways we do this is to give you information on some of the best places to find food which will remind you of home. In this article, we take a look at some of the finest Indian Restaurants in Britain. Indian specialities provide many of Britain’s favourite foods, with chicken tikka masala, and chicken jalfrezi regularly topping polls to find the country’s most popular dishes.
However, many of the restaurants will ‘anglicise’ their recipes to suit British tastes. Our list gives you ideas of restaurants where the flavours are authentic.
1. Hansa’s Restaurant (72-74 North St, Leeds LS2 7PN)
This vegetarian restaurant is a place where booking is strongly advised. Even at lunchtimes, it will often be full. You are immediately made to feel at home by the attentive staff, and it is a warm restaurant where you can feel comfortable dining alone or as part of a group. The food bursts with freshness, and is reasonably priced. The restaurant provides a great range of choices for both vegetarian and vegan customers.
2. Kayal Restaurant (8 Broad St, Nottingham NG1 3AL)
This very reasonably priced restaurant specialises in Southern Indian flavours, with subtle use of spices. Fish dishes are particularly good, but the standard is high throughout the menu. With a relaxed interior and friendly service, this is a definite refuelling point if you ever find yourself in the city of Robin Hood.
3. Dishoom (5 Stable St, Kings Cross, London N1C 4AB)
With premises across London, and also in Edinburgh, this chain provides a vibrant atmosphere and a buzzing crowd. Prepare to queue to take your seat, but the food will be worth the wait. A little on the costly side (but then you are in the centre of the city), there is a great range of foods available from delicious and varied vegetarian options to excellent biriyani. Service is friendly and efficient.
4. Gymkhana (42 Albemarle St, Mayfair, London W1S 4JH)
It’s very much quality over quantity here, and you should expect to pay more than average for the pleasure of sitting in one of London’s most expensive sectors. Nevertheless, the experience is worthwhile. The cultured atmosphere and rustic interior contrasts well with the buzzy street on which the restaurant is housed. Food is terrific, with the biriyani, duck starter and scallops all getting special praise, and service is informed and friendly.
5. Akbar’s (1276 Leeds Road, Bradford BD3 8LF, England)
With locations in several cities in the North of England, this is another restaurant with wide appeal. The example listed above, in Bradford, is situated in what is widely considered to be Britain’s curry capital. With great-value food, friendly service and atmosphere, and a wide range of options on the menu, Akbar’s is well worth a visit. Many customers are regulars (which might explain why it is advisable to book in advance!)
6. Jilabi (2065 Coventry Rd, Birmingham B26 3DY)
Terrific service, excellent food and great atmosphere are all elements of the superb dining experience you can expect at Jilabi’s in England’s second city. On top of the great menu, many customers reported on a range of freebies, from drinks to desserts, that they were offered. No guarantees for this, but it made an impression on some of Jilabi’s diners.
7. Amaya (15 Halkin Arcade, Motcomb Street, Belgravia, London)
Set in the heart of Belgravia, prices at the Michelin-starred Amaya are more affordable than might be thought, particularly with their set menus. With a feature grill and a range of tasting menus on offer, there is a good range for diners of all tastes. Good service, strong atmosphere – but that would be expected in such a well-regarded eatery.
8. Lasan Restaurant (3-4 Dakota Buildings, James Street, St Paul’s Square, Birmingham, B3 1SD)
Attentive service is the order of the day at the Lasan. A fairly standard interior is more than compensated for by the traditional food, of which the soft shell crab, goat biriyani and full range of lamb-based dishes all receive great feedback. There is also a strong range of vegetarian, vegan and Halal dishes available.
9. Spice Lounge (St. Nicholas Cottage, Market Place, Durham DH1 3NJ)
Good sized portions and great value for money are two of the strengths of the Spice Lounge, situated in the beautiful northern city of Durham. Saag dishes have delicate flavouring and the thali range is strongly recommended. The restaurant is modern in style, with good service.
10. Spice UK (13 Berriew Street, Welshpool SY21 7SQ,)
Our final recommendation is for a restaurant in Wales. Welshpool is a smallish town, and a trip to Spice UK is recommended. A relaxed and friendly service is complemented by lovely, spicy food. The mixed starter is good, and any of the range of curries will fill you nicely. Of course, moving out of the big cities has the advantage of ensuring great value for money.
This recommended list of Indian restaurants should give you the opportunity of tasting food that will remind you of home, if the sub-continent is the part of the world from which you originate. For all of us, the list offers a great dining experience.
TransferGo was established to support migrants to Britain, offering, through our blogs, a range of information and services to help them settle in their new country. We aim to give people from all over the world both the opportunity to transfer money to their home country easily and quickly, and to give them the tools to make the most of their lives in Britain.