So Near So Farzi


London’s latest high-end restaurant import — the Farzi Café brand brings experimental Indian cuisine with a signature twist. Serena Templeton finds out what the perception challenging fuss is all about

Deconstructed Shepherd’s Pie: Tawa Aloo, Seared Wagyu. Masala Scotch Eggs. Pav Bhaji Fondu. Hardly the type of fare you would find at your average Indian fine dining restaurant.

But then Farzi Café is about as unaverage as they come. Billed as a “sensory adventure of the traditional fused with the futuristic”, Farzi Café created a sensation when it opened in Gurgaon near New Delhi in 2014.

For the first time traditional Indian and global classics were transformed by cutting edge molecular techniques, with a healthy serving of flair, panache and style on the side. Truly a culinary offering for Millennials.

Fast forward four years, and in the wake of nine hugely successful sites across India and one in Dubai, Farzi Café has now launched its first London restaurant at Number 8 Haymarket.

Destined to forever alter the capital’s dining dynamic - and preconceived ideas about Indian food - Farzi Café London is overseen by the award-winning chef Saurabh Udinia.

One of India’s most acclaimed young tal ents, he has brought experimental Indian cuisine to the city for the first time, with the help of molecular gastronomy, state-of-the art equipment and food theatre unlike any seen before.

Farzi Café London signature dishes include such wondrous concoctions as Dal Chawal Arancini (Sicilian arancini balls made with dal & chawal served with aachar, papad & chutney), Raj Kachori (mini shells with sweet & sour pumpkin topped with chutney foam, crisp okra salad) and Tandoori Wild Mushrooms, Truffle & Walnut Dust.

The presentation of all these dishes - and indeed everything on the menu - is of course an impressive element of Farzi Café, but it’s not until you have tasted these unique creations that the whole experience is complete.

As well as being at the forefront of experiential cuisine, Farzi Café London has joined forces with Dare Hospitality to offer a post-modern, laboratory-style bar serving a range of unique concoctions playfully inspired by India’s ancient Hindu past. Each cocktail on The Vedika Menu (Sanskrit for “restoring knowledge”) has been created using the very latest equipment including centrifugal machines and a sonic homogeniser.

The result is a collection of drinks - among them the Harmonised Mithuna, a heady mix of dark rum, pecan orgeat, toasted sesame oil, ashwagandha, jasmine, holy   basil tincture, clarified lime and sugarcane crystals - the like of which the capital has never seen before.

Alongside the cocktails, a democratic selection of small producer wines, with select fine vintages available by glass using the Coravin system, will be served at the perfect temperature from the in-house EuroCave. Rounding off this incredible offering are beers from the celebrated Indian craft brewery, White Rhino.


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