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It’s not easy to capture the exuberance of India in a mews behind Selfridges, but owner Rohit Chugh has a good go in his two-tiered Roti Chai. Head for the ground-floor Street Kitchen for good-value snacks and hubbub: you can expect industrial canteen interiors, close-packed tables, high decibels and trendy takes on the classics, from bhel-pooris and ‘railway’ curry to buns filled with spiced Elwy Valley lamb. It’s “fun and innovative”, but there’s also some real authenticity on show. Evenings see the moodily lit downstairs Dining Room come into its own and the kitchen ups the ante, delivering spirited chilli garlic prawns, more of that Welsh lamb cooked in the tandoor, Parsee-style chicken dhansak or South Indian fish kari. Service is game, but the frenetic pace of it all can cause problems. Note: prices above refer to the Dining Room.
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Roti Chai was on my radar ages ago from when they competed in the inaugural Ribstock competition. Their spiced rib was spectacular and I’ve been meaning to try out the restaurant ever since. The venue has two parts – a casual street food café on the ground level and a more formal restaurant setting on the lower floor. Each space has a different menu (sadly you can’t order from the café if you are in the restaurant or vice versa) so its worth taking a look at both to make sure you book into your preference.
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