It may be off the beaten track, but The Painted Heron is worth hunting down for its inventive, offbeat take on contemporary Indian cuisine. Where else in the capital would you find a surprisingly delicious side dish of sweet English strawberries in mild curry sauce – or an Asian riff on Lancashire hotpot? From tempura lotus roots or pigeon breasts cooked sous-vide with tamarind to spice-roasted black cod with crab pilau, it’s all a world away from the three-pot clichés of your average local curry joint. Desserts such as chocolate fondant could do with a little more TLC, although things perk up again with the zesty international wine list and top-notch cocktails. The handsomely furnished dining room and attentive staff are further pluses.
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