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After a brief dalliance as an Italian restaurant, this gloriously gothic ex-bank has returned to its most successful incarnation – upmarket Indian destination Zaika. It's a natural fit for current owners the Tamarind Collection, who have managed to win back most of its long-term fans. When we visited, packed tables added some welcome intimacy to the grand vaulted room with its wood panels, ornate stone carvings and luxuriant greenery. Readers have been quick to praise the "fantastic" food, which draws heavily on the traditions of North Indian cuisine: our tandoori lamb chops were among the best we've eaten, while special shout-outs should also go the delicate chilli-crusted scallops, lamb biryani and excellent murgh handi lazeez – a creamy chicken curry flavoured with tomatoes and cashews. The odd gripe aside, service tends to manage things with consummate ease. "In every respect, outstanding!" declares one fan.
The old banking hall which houses Zaika is an imposing building. Despite having been restored less than two years ago, inside it feels as if you’ve stepped back into the days of the Raj. The dining room is lush with plants, traditional Indian art is complemented by wood panelling and ornate plasterwork, seating is on comfy leather chairs or banquettes. There’s a well stocked bar serving some amazing cocktails and, even when it is busy, high ceilings and careful table layout stop the place feeling crowded. I’d been to Zaika before, but this time I was invited to try the Vegetarian Tasting Menu – a special for National...
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Every so often, I visit a restaurant that has the perfect combination of good looks, great food and friendly service. Zaika of Kensington ticks all these boxes, fusing contemporary Indian cuisine with the Awadhi traditions of Northern India. Awadhi cooking is characterized by elaborate dishes with a refined mix of flavours and spices. Zaika is housed in a spectacular 19th century former bank, which retains many original features yet has comfortable modern seating. It first opened in 1999 and joined the Tamarind Collection in 2012. The group is well known for its sister restaurant, Tamarind in Mayfair, which was the...
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Zaika has been serving since 1999, and is one of only a select few Indian restaurants to be awarded two prestigious AA rosettes. Joining with the famous Tamarind Collection in November, 2012.The building is an incredible spectacle, and the opulent interior is a marvel to be surrounded by. Dining in Zaika is more than just an experience of the cuisine, it’s an insight into a beautiful and rich Indian culture.
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