Chef Manoj Karnavar spent 18 years cooking in top-flight hotels around the world before setting up this self-named restaurant in the centre of Croydon. Karnavar is a chic, smart and sociable addition to the local scene with its cool, cream-toned interiors and ambitious menu – an unusual mix of contemporary Indian and modern European dishes. You could take the Asian route by ordering honey and cinnamon-glazed quail with organic pearl barley and golden beetroot chat followed by seared sea bass with coconut, cassava and pumpkin flower pakora or head west for slow-cooked pork belly with Pommery mustard mash, wild mushroom and apple purée. Desserts also aim high – how about Goan bebinca (a nutmeg layered cake with fresh pineapple, poppy seed crumble and ice cream). Set lunches offer two-courses for just £9.80.