Gunpowder Soho

Indian·
££££
·
Bronze Award
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SquareMeal Review of Gunpowder Soho

Bronze Award

London has seen at least a couple of different evolutions when it comes to Indian food. First, there was the traditional, white-tableclothed fine dining, then the new-wave of upstarts, which eschewed naans, samosas and butter chickens in favour of India’s less-discovered regions. Gunpowder has been among the best of the latter, and now the group numbers three restaurants, in Spitalfields, Tower Bridge and Soho.

The moody interiors certainly fit with the name and the vibe - uplights cast a gentle glow across the room, reflected in a mirrored wall on one side of the relatively narrow dining space. White marble tabletops contrast with black marble around the service area, and the chequerboard tiling underfoot also contributes to Gunpowder’s modern, monochrome feel.

As previously mentioned, Gunpowder’s menu purposely does-away with some of the expectations of traditional Indian food. There is no tandoor in the kitchen, which thus rules out staples like naan breads and tandoori meats. Instead, a compact menu includes a series of inventive small and large sharers. The dishes that made Gunpowder a roaring success in years gone by are largely still available, and are just as brilliant as ever. The venison donut is a beautiful thing indeed - a fist-sized ball of golden crispy vermicelli and spiced venison, with a liberal amount of tangy sauce to pour over. The egg masala too - despite Gunpowder not really doing curries - might be one of the most delicious curries we’ve ever eaten.

Another side of Gunpowder’s more modern approach is the cocktail menu, and it’s an excellent one, full of nicely balanced sips like the rum, star anise and campari Fernandes Rum Punch.

Not everything on the menu is quite so successful - Gunpowder’s take on a barbecue rib came in a sticky tamarind sauce that was too cloying, and the ribs weren’t quite tender enough to come off the bone. Neat slices of grilled summer pumpkin came swaddled in a Chettinad sauce that felt a bit lacking in oomph. Still, most of the many dishes we ordered were hits, proving that Gunpowder - once the unconventional upstart, is now very much here to stay.

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £50 - £79
Cuisines
Indian
Ambience
Cosy, Lively, Traditional
Food Occasions
Dinner, Lunch
Special Features
Vegetarian options
People
Birthdays, Celebrations, Dates, Romantic
Food Hygiene Rating

About

Gunpowder is a contemporary Indian restaurant located in the heart of Soho, just a short walk from Cambridge Circus and Tottenham Court Road. The restaurant serves up distinctly modern Indian plates that often riff on traditional Indian cuisine, and has two other sites in London, at Spitalfields and Tower Bridge respectively.

The interiors are stylish and minimalist, with a muted colour palette that compliments the bold cooking. The seating consists mostly of wooden chairs and banquettes, which lend a rustic charm to the space, while the lighting is atmospheric and intimate.

The menu at Gunpowder is inspired by the diverse and flavorful cuisine of India, but is purposefully different from traditional Indian food in the UK. The Soho branch, for example, does not have a tandoor and therefore, does not serve Indian breads or tandoori dishes. There is little in the way of sundries other than steamed basmati rice and raita - instead, there’s a compact menu of large and small sharing plates. Gunpowder’s best known dishes include the spicy venison and vermicelli doughnuts, the egg masala, and deep-fried soft shell crab. There are also plenty of vegetarian and vegan options available, such as roasted cauliflower and paneer tikka. The dessert menu is short and sweet, and includes a rum bread and butter pudding, and dark chocolate, cinnamon and passion fruit shrikhand - an Indian dessert made with strained yoghurt.

Gunpowder also boasts an extensive drinks menu, with a focus on craft cocktails and a carefully curated selection of wine and beer. The cocktail menu is especially creative, featuring mixes like the turmeric sour, made with turmeric-infused gin, lime, and egg white, and the Gunpowder punch, a potent mix of rum, ginger beer, and passionfruit.

Location

20 Greek Street, Soho, London, W1D 4DU
Website

Opening Times

Lunch
Mon 12:00-15:00
Tue 12:00-15:00
Wed 12:00-15:00
Thu 12:00-15:00
Fri Closed
Sat Closed
Sun Closed
Dinner
Mon 17:00-22:00
Tue 17:00-22:00
Wed 17:00-22:00
Thu 17:00-22:00
Fri Closed
Sat Closed
Sun Closed
All day
Mon Closed
Tue Closed
Wed Closed
Thu Closed
Fri 11:00-22:00
Sat 11:00-22:00
Sun 11:00-21:00

Reviews

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1 Review 
Food/Drink
Service
Atmosphere
Value

Kully S

23 November 2022  
Food & Drink 5
Service 5
Atmosphere 5
Value 5

Great ambience, tailored and original menu and perfect Soho location.

 

Not to forget, friendly and efficient staff.

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