Tamarind Indian

Fancy menu at this upmarket new Indian Discuss this article

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Would you pay QR400 for a dinner of seared foie gras, queen scallops, lamb chops and deep-fried ice cream? This sounds to me reasonable enough by Doha standards. Oh, but did I mention this is at an Indian restaurant, with all the dishes spiced accordingly?

When folks here think about splashing out on a special meal, Indian cuisine is probably not an option that immediately springs to mind. After all, the city is replete with curry shops that serve complete, lip-smacking meals for around QR15. But it’s exactly this perception that Tamarind hopes to change. We think. Because everything from the set-up to food offerings sends a message of utter refinement – with the associated price tag.

The place resembles a lounge more than a restaurant. Low tables with velvet swivel chairs, wall-to-wall carpeting, decorative shelving units and spotlights, all complete a date night look. The moment we sit down, we sink into the plush seating to find the table at an uncomfortable height. We request to change but are informed we are better off staying put. As it turns out, the other alternatives are just as ergonomically challenged.

Unwilling to let this bother us, we dive into the menu. We can’t decide between the potato lollilop with chickpeas and fried soft-shell crab but settle on the latter. First comes a croquette amuse bouche resembling a small piece of artwork on the plate, then the crab which is light and crispy with mild spices in the batter. This is a cracker of a dish, though the serving feels petite for the price.

The list of mains intrigues us further with options such as lamb shank with avocado masala and prawn biryani. We are slightly disappointed when we’re told we can’t order individual dishes from the gourmet four-course set menu so we turn our attention to the navratan korma with nuts and paneer, which turns out to be beautifully balanced in a rich sauce, and the murgh nawabi of chicken in saffron and almonds that is exponentially improved after we send the initial, bland dish back and ask the kitchen to add more kick.

Plus, the accompanying breads are excellent.

Tamarind has a lot going for it. The food teetering between fusion and modern Indian is unusual for Doha. Service is efficient, accommodating and receptive but the pricing structure might prove a deterrent, shutting out many just looking for a reliable neighbourhood restaurant as opposed to a celebratory destination.

The bill (for two)
1 x soft-shell crab QR69
1 x Murgh Nawabi QR68
1 x Navratan Korma QR44
1 x butter naan QR12
1 x cheese naan QR15
1 x mango lassi QR32
2 x water QR48
Total QR288

By Time Out Bahrain staff
Time Out Doha,

Time Out reviews restaurants anonymously and pays for meals. Of course, we cannot guarantee the accuracy or independence of user reviews.

Details

  • Location: Lagoona Mall, West Bay Lagoon, Doha
  • Tel: 4481 5544
  • Travel: Zig Zag Towers
  • Cuisine: Indian
  • Times: Open daily 11am-11pm
  • Price: QR200-350
  • Credit Cards Accepted: Yes

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