Our sadness at the closure of Mumbai Mansions was replaced by joy that the team were planning to open the Mumbai Diner’s Club at Haymarket. Having followed the team as they have moved form Mithas in Leith to Mumbai Mansions in Haymarket, we are happy to hear that their combination of fine dining and great Indian food has not left the Edinburgh scene.
The new venue on Atholl Place, previously home to China Town, has kept them central (and perhaps worrying accessible for us on our way home). The new restaurant has a restrained feel, with the feel of a fine dining restaurant and is a world away from the stereotype of a ‘late night curry house’.
All the flavours: the tasting menu
C & I found the menu too tempting for a week day night, with so many things we wanted to try. (Caroline: there’s a great range of interesting dishes, from delicate monkfish through to robust lamb. Each dish is intentional: no base sauce and four options of protein here.) We settled on sharing the vegetarian tasting menu as it would let us taste more of their starters and main courses (washed down with a bottle of the flinty Gruner Veltliner).
We started with the wild rocket leaf salad, which cleaned up our palettes with a refreshing & crunchy salad, seasoned with an intriguing hint of salt and dressed lightly with a tangy orange/citrus. The Paneer Tikka were cubes of paneer cooked on a skewer and marinated with English mustard and fenugreek. The paneer had an amazing texture – soft and delish – complimented by the gentle heat from the marinade. Caroline particularly enjoyed the tomato/plum jam and I must confess that this was my plate of the day.
Aloo Ki Tikki was a potato croquette combined with ground spices – true comfort food. From the description I had worried about overpowering spices (I am a very light seasoner), but the chef had a gentle hand and the tikki had a subtle flavour and was a perfect foil for the sublime fresh spicy chutney.
The Tandoori Mushrooms gave a heavenly aroma as they were placed on the table. I would not expect a scent of mushrooms & honey to be that appealing. The mushrooms were marinated in spices & ginger, and stuffed with paneer. My only complaint was the need to share this with C.
The Corn & Pea Kebab was spice, soft & pretty. As with the Aloo Ki tikki, this was a calming return to comfort food. The two little skewered cylinders were gentle and reassuring and were a wonderful ending to the starters.
I must confess a life long dislike of sorbets & ice creams, and so will rely on Caroline’s positive comments on the Mandarin & Chilli Sorbet as a delightful palate cleanser. (Caroline: it was delicate and floral with a delicate chilli warmth. Lovely.) I was happy to achieve the same with a long sip of wine.
Moving on to mains
The tasting menus main course were the Seasonal Vegetables and the Dal Tadka. The Seasonal Vegetables were subtle & soothing. They had a gentle curry flavour, but not at the expense of the taste of the individual vegetables. The Dal Tadka, spiced yellow lentils tempered with spices, onion and tomatoes was served with naan and pilau rice. This was great end to the savoury courses, with lentils being raised by the rich spiced sauce. The Tadka reminded me that the Mumbai Diner’s Club was serving great Indian cuisine. With the quality of the starters, a million miles away from a bowl of samosas or bhajis, it was something I had forgotten.
As we were visiting while the restaurant was still in the ‘soft launch’, the options for dessert were a little limited. Caroline enjoyed the home made ice creams. She was complimentary of the vanilla & chocolate, and particularly impressed by the honeycomb. (The launch menu has some interesting options for pudding and we look forward to sampling on our next visit.)
The Mumbai Diner’s Club is a very good restaurant and a place to bring those you want to impress. It is understated but then, you don’t need to shout loudly when you can deliver food of this quality.
3 Atholl Place
Edinburgh, EH3 8HP
Telephone: 0131 229 8291
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Christopher and Caroline were invited to dine by Mumbai Diner’s Club.