Manthan

Indian·
££££
·
Silver Award
·
London, W1S 2PQ ·Website ·Call020 7408 2258

SquareMeal Review of Manthan

Silver Award

It feels almost lazy to describe an Indian restaurant as colourful, but it’s also hard to think of anything else when reflecting on an experience at Manthan. The peacock-coloured banquette seating runs the length of this petite restaurant on Maddox Street, the second collaboration between Michelin starred chef Rohit Ghai and entrepreneur Abhi Sangwan, and bright, bold dishes fill the menu.

There’s a generosity of spirit that weaves through everything too, from the plush surrounds and sweet service through to the portions, which are reassuringly hearty. Don’t miss ordering a plate of crisp Ghati masala prawns - perfectly cooked and surrounded in addictive, almost buttery-tasting batter, these have an intriguing complexity of flavour. Other winners included a fried buttermilk chicken topped with deeply savoury curry leaves and covered in a pink peppercorn sauce tableside. With every plate we tried nuanced and delicious, we imagine this is just one of those menus that delivers, whatever you choose. An aloo paratha – for instance – wasn’t your regular bread but came with melting home-churned butter on top of it along with a sweet and sour radish pickle.

Mains of rich curries and smoky grills presented a particularly good egg Anda dish with an umami-rich fenugreek and stone fungus gravy and a plant-based ‘chop’ that was surprisingly convincing at imitating chicken (although, truthfully, we missed the bite of real meat). Rice, raita and roti breads completed mains for a spread that saw every last mouthful mopped up.

Desserts were less of a strong suit. In Ghai’s experienced hands they were hardly destined to be bad, but they weren’t particularly memorable, and we’d swap them for one of the top-class cocktails any day.

While the gold taps in the bathroom might leave you in doubt that you’re dining in one of London’s most exclusive postcodes, the kind and charming staff (dressed in sharp dog-tooth suits, no less) create the air of everyone being truly welcome.

Good to know

Average Price
££££ - £50 - £79
Cuisines
Indian
Ambience
Fine dining, Glamorous, Luxury, Quiet conversation
Food Occasions
Dinner, Lunch
Special Features
Vegetarian options
People
Dates, Special occasions
Food Hygiene Rating

About Manthan

If you’re a fan of fine dining Indian fare in London, chances are you’ve already eating Rohit Ghai’s food. With over ten years’ worth of experience under his belt, the chef has headed up big-name kitchens like Gymkhana, Bombay Bustle, Hoppers and Trishna as well as Jamavar, where the restaurant was awarded a Michelin star under a year after he joined.

Manthan – the chef's own venture – takes learnings from his previous successes and brings them to the table with a new twist. Traditional flavours have been given a contemporary edge with Ghai drawing on his appreciation of home-style cooking as well as cutting-edge techniques. Many of the dishes, in fact, have been reimagined from happy memories of his childhood in Madhya Pradesh.

The food format is one we’ve come to know intimately in the last few years - it’s sharing plates. Nearly half of the kitchen’s creations are vegetarian, while dishes with chicken, lamb or guinea fowl can all be made Halal. To start there are snacky bits like mong daal fritters, while heartier dishes include a rich egg curry with buttery paratha bread. Elsewhere a there’s a chicken chop with mustard, kachumber salad and mint chutney, a robust goat kebab in marrow sauce and Ghai’s signature dish, masala prawns with peanuts, sesame and coconut.

To compliment the food offering the team has created a confident drinks list, spearheaded by co-founder Abhi Sangwan. Sangwan’s experience at Trishna and Bombay Bustle means he knows a thing or two about popular serves, and his concise cocktail menu comes with wide appeal. Drinks are made with exotic fruits and botanicals as well as Asian spirits. Designated drivers and abstainers are well served too with a dedicated non-alcoholic menu.

Tables are arranged around a striking central bar, with the combination of dark wood and luxurious marble giving the place a sleek look and feel.


FAQs

Who is the head chef at Manthan?

Rohit Ghai is the head chef at Manthan in Mayfair. The chef's experience includes time heading up some of the best Indian restaurants in London - including Jamavar where he won the restaurant a Michelin star shortly after joining.

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Location for Manthan

49 Maddox Street, London, W1S 2PQ

020 7408 2258

Website

Reviews of Manthan

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2 Reviews 
Food/Drink
Service
Atmosphere
Value

Parsnips

Order the butter chicken
27 October 2021  

Lovely decor, very attentive staff and delicious food. The atmosphere was quiet but we went early in the week - definitely order the butter chicken!

Food & Drink
Service
Atmosphere
Value

Anon

Unwelcome despite confirmed booking
09 October 2021  

Went to Manthan having booked on opentable.

We turned up and booking was visible on the screen but he said that they couldn’t accommodate us despite it being empty at 1800 and with the promise that we would be finished by 19.15 as we were going to the theatre as part of a birthday celebration.
Made to feel unwelcome and unwanted so had to leave.
Very poor
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