Talli Joe’s Restaurant
Earlier this week marked 70 years since India gained independence from British rule. I therefore thought it’s only fitting that I commemorate this landmark milestone by writing up about the nation’s cuisine and one restaurant in particular that’s turning Indian culinary fanfare on its head.
Talli Joe’s rests comfortably amongst the vibrant food scene on Shaftsbury Avenue, offering unearthed flavours from some of India’s otherwise overlooked regions. Aptly slogan-ed ‘Half Plates, Full Drinks’, Talli’s serves up tapas-sized portions accompanied by a regionally inspired cocktail menu.
Dishes range from the sweet and sticky Raghogarhi seabass, served steamed in a banana leaf – to the fiery Chicken 21 stir fry, tossed with South Indian spices and curry leaves. You won’t find any Lamb Jalfrezi or Chicken Vindaloos on this menu! Here, no curry is complete without the decadent Truffle Ghee Kulcha, a stuffed cheese naan bread perfect for scooping and dipping. Portion sizes are designed for sharing, which gives you the opportunity to sample plenty of Talli Joe’s delights.
Talli, in Hindi, is used with reference to being slightly tipsy. In keeping with this theme, Talli’s puts an emphasis on cocktails with their impressive menu taking inspiration from all four corners of India. Baba Budan utilises South India’s steaming coffee trade by mixing up palm sugar with rum and Kaapi (traditional Indian filter coffee). Zip up north to find the inspiration behind Talli’s Keri Collins – a generous splash of vodka mixed with the native mango and topped with lime soda.
The dessert offering perfectly complements the spicy kick from your earlier half plates. Cool down with the Rose Ice cream paired with the Black Gajar Halwa – an interesting twist on this staple Punjabi sweet.
The verdict? I’ll certainly be returning soon! Talli’s has given standard-issue Indian food menus a much-needed makeover, and it’s exciting to see what else they’ll bring to the table (quite literally!).
Tallis is walk-in friendly with limited reservations available online. With a pre-theatre menu and a £10 dhaba lunch option, there’s plenty of reasons to welcome this newcomer with open arms and hungry stomachs.
For the full menu and to make a reservation online, just visit http://www.tallijoe.com/