Our table at The Cinnamon Club - a high-end Indian restaurant in the heart of Westminster - was booked for 19:30 but, even though we were around 15 minutes early, we were allowed to take our seats straight away. We'd already decided to give the tasting menu a whirl so our only choice for the night was which wine to go for. Upon advice from one of the waiters we chose a nice Italian red and settled down in anticipation of a memorable meal.
The main dining room of The Cinnamon Club is a large, open affair with hundreds of books lining the walls; including several works by Dickens and other such eclectic subjects as Norsk Flora. Perusing the covers of these kept us entertained until our amuse bouche of a coriander and yoghurt covered cube of steamed rice appeared. And disappeared just as quickly, having been swiftly devoured.
Next up was a plate of three small appetisers, the highlight of which was some flaky crab on a lotus root crisp, before our first starter proper arrived in the form of a spiced seafood bisque. And it certainly was spiced, packing a real punch, but thankfully not overpowering the background taste of prawn and shrimp. The second starter was another mixed plateful, with the star this time being some okra filled with peanut and jaggery - which our waiter informed us was a type of cane sugar.
|Starter Number 2|
And so to our two mains, which kicked off with a pair of plump prawns partnered with a cracking mango and coriander sauce. This was probably my favourite dish of the whole meal. The second main was a Tandoori grouse breast, served up with some minced grouse leg meat and a dollop of coriander mashed potato. No complaints about this course either, though I'd like to try some unspiced grouse sometime now, as the Tandoori flavour was again pretty strong.