For anyone who loves food and is also a keen instagrammer (these days they come hand in hand), you’re bound to have heard of Dishoom. If not, put it on your radar like, right now.
Talking of Instagram, that’s exactly where I found Dishoom a while back and I sat, salivating whilst looking at all posts from the location. Even though I’d been to London several times since stumbling upon it’s charm I still hadn’t managed to fit it in. It’s a place I’ve recommended to many people and then felt instant regret when seeing their pictures having missed out on the experience myself. The green eyed monster would rear its ugly head and I have to force myself to give them a ‘like’.
In short, Dishoom is a Bombay inspired cafè built with the old Irani digs of Bombay in mind… so their website told me anyway. Sadly I’ve never been to Mumbai but there’s hope of a 2018 visit and after sitting down for a chai in Dishoom I’m moving it up my agenda. If I’m not met with paneer, chole bhatura or roomali rolls then I won’t be happy.
It’s no wonder Dishoom has been mentioned in the Good Food Guide and ranked in the top 100 UK restaurants just by looking at a picture of their goods. Now I’ve actually been I can say that they’ve made their way on to these lists with hard work and damn good food. It’s traditional but also with a British twist. It’s not your prawn vindaloo, mango chutney and chips kinda place but it’s ok because you won’t miss it. There’s so much more to Indian cuisine than a lamb passanda. Although I could definitely polish off a peshwari naan right now.
Anyway, we visited the branch in Shoreditch and straight away you feel like you’ve been transported not only to India but to a place way back when. There’s an undercover outside seating area with lots of greenery; it makes for a very atmospheric place to eat breakfast. The interior is perfect and I loved all the little details from the tiles to the tables to the ‘rules’ that have been Instagrammed and then some. You’ve probably seen them before but here’s a reminder anyway.
There are many times you could eat at Dishoom throughout the day and you’d be delivered beautiful eats but for us, there was only one time to visit and that was first thing in the morning. Naturally I booked a table but not because I’m someone who loves to plan everything down to the walk of course, but I couldn’t stomach the thought of being turned away from a sausage.
I ordered a traditional chai as soon as we sat down simply because it’s one of my favourites and I can definitely vouch for Morgan when I say he probably wishes he’d done the same. No, M ordered a cocktail. A very early morning cocktail. It was so strong I almost fell off my seat from the fumes alone which, as my friends would say, isn’t that far off me having a sip of wine anyway.
The chai on the other hand was absolutely perfect. It was wonderfully spiced and warming and I welcomed it with open mouth even though it was fairly tropical outside. To accompany my chai chaser I ordered the biggest breakfast option on the menu which, judging by the reaction of the waitress, should have been too big for a female. Little did she know, eh?
While both of us waited in anticipation for the arrival of our nose bag, a familiar face wandered over to say hello. What are the chances both The Plate Licked Clean and I would be in London at the same time, in the same restaurant, in the same area of London?
The breakfast, very quickly, arrived and I instantly turned into a love heart eye emoji. I couldn’t help myself. I don’t know a time when I have ever been so excited for breakfast to arrive and I am a very keen bruncher. The plate was full to the edge, just the way I like it. The sausages were massive and there were two. Two massive, peppery sausages from Shropshire in fact. So not very Indian but I really couldn’t care when they taste as good as they do. Next to the massive sausages were eggs scrambled with curry spices, crispy bacon, masala baked beans, buttery pau bread rolls, extra large and sensationally cooked field mushrooms and a grilled tomato. The addition of ketchup with a kick was also bang on.
As aforementioned, the sausages were top drawer, the bacon was extra crispy which should be the way bacon is served, the masala spices in the beans off-set the sugariness marvellously and the inclusion of the curry spices with he scrambled eggs made a firm favourite that little bit more special.
This, without a shadow of brunchy doubt is the best breakfast I’ve ever, ever, ever had the honour of eating. If you live in or near London or have a fast approaching trip, please move Dishoom to the top of your list and you won’t live to regret it.
I’ll accept your gratitude and thankfulness in all forms of sweet treat, cheese or carbohydrate. In fact, just bring me back a bacon naan for me.