Review: Imli Street, Soho

Cuisine: Indian Street Food
Price: £££
Swank Levels: 4/5
Overall: 5/5

My several starters from the Chaat Bar

After a recent successful makeover Imli Street has been transformed into a lively and fashionable Indian Street Food restaurant. There are now edgy exposed brickwork walls and the furniture made up of trendy school style wooden tables and stools and atmospheric hanging lights. The lighting and layout give this restaurant a quirky industrial chic but also comfortable feel.

There is also a bar at the front of the restaurant which always has a group of people around it, instantly giving the restaurant an energy and lively feel as diners enter.

Would I Want Seconds?

Imli Street serves up my favourite food: chaat. In fact they have an entire Chaat Bar in celebration of India’s most popular street food starters and snacks.

These include Samosa Chaat made up of Punjabi vegetable samosa, yoghurt & chutneys, Chowpatti Bhel with puffed rice, assorted crisps, peanuts, mango & chutneys as well as Pav Bhaji which is spiced potato and vegetable curry with toasted brioche baps. These dishes, as well as the Dahi Papdi (wheat crisps, chickpeas, yoghurt, chutneys and sev) and Aloo Tikki Ragra (potato cakes with spiced chickpeas) are authentic Indian street food dishes and I am so pleased that there is finally a restaurant in central London that serves these.

I foresee many an evening spent snacking on this collection, as not only are the ingredients authentic, but the taste of each dish also harks back to its sub-continental original.

My dessert - Julab Gamun and Kheer

As well as the street food dishes, another novelty offered by Imli Street is the Stand Menu. These are made up of 3 of their most popular dishes plus steamed rice and yellow dal, all for £19.95. There are two Stands to choose from, either an Imli Stand or a Street Stand, both of which offer enough food for 2 people to share.

As well as the innovative dishes, Imli street also have the a Breakfast Menu offer European, Asian and American breakfast options. There is also an All Day Menu featuring dishes from three ingenious inspirations; Beyond Borders which offer electic Indian dishes with foreign influences from Sri Lanka and China. They is also a Costal Shack section and Railway Cuisine too.

In this way Imli Street has a thorough menu which spans wider than the borders of the Indian Subcontinent and is presented in an exciting and innovative way.

Could I Afford Seconds?

The prices at Imli Street match those of other restaurants in Soho. The main course generally cost around £8 - £12, while the smaller sharing dishes and those from the Chaat Bar are £4.50 each or £8 for two, which is well worth the cost.
In addition the Stand Menus are excellent value for money, offering three courses for £19.95.

The drinks are also worth a mention as they have an amazing range on offer, including ‘Muddled Iced Teas’ featuring jasmine, lemongrass and passion fruit. They also have a range of quirky Indian inspired cocktails including Anar Kali, made up of Champagne, Pama Liquor and fresh pomegranate; Snake Charmer which includes Spiced Rum, Koko Kanu, and passion fruit.

Overall: 5/5

Imli Street specialises in small plates of South Asian regional favourites. This is my favourite type of food and the mint-coriander, green mango, sweet yogurt and tamarind chutney served here definitely hits the spot. Imli street is the sister restaurant to Michelin star Indian restaurant Tamarind and this is evident from the quality of food served up.

So whether it’s for drinks, quick snacks, a full meal or even breakfast, Imli Steet is worth a visit.


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