Wow. Just wow. I have no words to describe how good this place was. I mean, I can, but I’m not sure my words will do it justice. The biggest compliment I can give is that it was the best Indian food that I have ever eaten out. Now that might sound like what every person under the sun says about their local Indian, but as you may or may not know I’m actually Indian myself. And usually I don’t ever think anyone matches up to home cooked food (because lets be honest, home cooked is the one). But this is a very strong contender. Gladiator ready!…Contender ready! This isn’t a fight to the death, but if it was, I couldn’t tell you who’d win.
Gunpowder, based in Spitalfields, is a sort of Indian style tapas, more ordering small plates for the table instead of individual meals. Which is always a win-win when you’re out and someone orders something you wish you had – now you can pick at everything! Each dish comes at different times and it works because you can savour every bite, without worrying that the other plates are getting cold. What really makes this stand out from the usual crowd is their vegetarian options. If you aren’t a meat eater, fear not, as this has something to tantalise the taste buds of everyone.
We got 5 plates for the table; Gunpowder aloo chat (v) – I couldn’t fault this one little bit. Every bite reminded me of being a kid again. If that isn’t a huge compliment to the chef, I don’t know what is! The spicy venison and vermicelli doughnut had a crispy vermicelli shell and tender meaty middle. Lovely texture to mix it all up. We also got a couple of maa’s kashmiri lamb chops – thee most succulent, and flavoursome pieces of Mary’s favourite animal I’ve had in a long time. The karwari soft shell crab – not at all what I expected. Deep fried, with the crab meat so flaky. And last, the wild rabbit pulao – meat that falls off the bone just by looking at it. This dish surprised me. I’ve not had rabbit before and I’m so glad this was my first time. The seasoned rice made it feel like a traditional curry, but the meat was different to the authentic options you usually get. Annnd, just for a little icing on top, the meat to rice ratio was spot on. Buried underneath were generous portions, enough to fill the hungriest of tummies and then some!
Now saving the best for last, the pièce de résistance, the crème de la crème. This was for me, hands down, was the best dessert, I’m going to go as far as to say, I’ve ever had. If you love chocolate, then trust me on this, you have to get it! The molten spice chocolate cake was light, but rich in flavour. Soft and fluffy, but enough substance to really hit the spot. I cannot, and will not, get over it any time soon. And the masala chai custard only added another layer of depth to this already unbelievable pudding. Think, when Harry met Sally diner scene, sounds of pleasure.
One thing I should mention though, it’s a very intimate restaurant, seating a grand total of 28. So get down early as they don’t take reservations. And if there’s one thing you try next time you’re down in the big smoke, let this be it.