Last Updated on August 12, 2021
Indian Dining in West London at Copper Chimney Westfield
I tend to be wary of large restaurant groups. There seems to be a rule of thumb linking a decline in quality to the size of the group. But maybe that’s just a UK phenomenon and I shouldn’t be so cynical? We are starting to see some excellent examples of top Indian restaurant groups opening outposts in London (see our review of Indian super chef Sanjeev Kapoor’s The Yellow Chilli in Wembley) and the latest example of this is Copper Chimney in Westfield, Shepherds Bush, which opened in May.
The group has won a slew of awards in India – Best National Indian Restaurant Brand, Chef of the Year, Best Regional Indian and Best National Dine-In Brand with recipes taken from modern Pakistan and India. Copper Chimney’s parent company, founded by JK Kapur in 1972 in Mumbai, runs 18 restaurants in India, you’ll find them taking care of the catering in India’s airports. They also have a sizeable international operation in Kuwait, UAE with 8,500 staff in all. This is their first UK opening so a lot is hanging on it.
Copper Chimney is very accessible, just around the corner from Shepherds Bush tube and it sits in the main strip of Westfield restaurants. The interior is attractively laid out with rough plaster walls, a hanging canopy of copper bells, lots of greenery, green and caramel. banquettes and wooden parquet as well as tiled flooring.
We started with a couple of cocktails – a refreshing passion fruit Margarita had a good balance between the tequila and fruit and a classic Mango Lassi was thick, rich and sweet.
We chose a couple of dishes from the starter plates menu. Chandni Chowk Chaat is Old Delhi street food bringing together Chatpata chickpeas, spiced potatoes and fresh yoghurt layered with a sweet & spicy chutney. I loved the contrast between the creamy yoghurt and the crunch with a delicious long spice finish adding the final touch.
Green Peas and Aloo Samosas had a shortcrust pastry rather than the filo that we often have in the UK. It makes it more like a pasty and had a green peas and potato filling which I like. It came with a wonderfully spicy tamarind chutney.
Assorted crisp papads came with a trio of chutneys – a fiery mango pickle, vegetal mint and coriander and a poky plum one. As we moved towards the main dishes the chilled bite of a pint of draft Cobra Indian beer was irresistible.
I’m always keen to try Tandoor dishes and Copper Chimney’s were excellent. Spice chutney fish sea bass from Karachi, marinated in a green mint and lemon chutney, had a fabulous melt-in-the-mouth smokiness.
Chargrilled Chicken Tikka kabab, marinated in yoghurt with a sprinkling of special Amritsari spices was caramelised and juicy with the charcoal flavour coming through beautifully.
I was impressed by the care put into the side dishes at Copper Chimney. Jeera potatoes were tender, fluffy and perfumed.
A classic butter Nan came hot from the tandoor doused in butter. More unusual was a multigrain Chura Paratha – a smoky layered flatbread similar to a healthy roti and sprinkled with a peppery sweet masala.
From the curry menu we tried the Butter Chicken Boneless Tandoor. It comes in a tomato-butter gravy flavoured with fenugreek. It’s almost like a cream of tomato soup with the shredded pieces of chicken adding a protein-packed punch.
I loved the Dal Maharaja – Slow-cooked black lentils, tomatoes and spices finished with a dollop of ghee. It was rich, earthy and deeply satisfying.
A fluffy, light vegetable Biryani featured saffron rice mixed up with cauliflower, potatoes, peas and carrots, covered with crisp fried onion.
One of the restaurant’s classic dishes is the grilled Burrah chop; intensely spiced, cinnamon-scented, tender lamb chops were marinated for over 8 hours, then seared and chargrilled. A perfect piece of cooking.
For dessert we tried the Gajar Pistachio Crumble from Amritsar. It’s an amazing slow-cooked carrot crumble perfumed with cardamom and sweetened condensed milk then layered with chopped pistachio and praline.
There was no better way to finish off this feast, served by the sweet and informed staff, than with a cup of Masala tea. If you’re a fan of high quality, reasonably priced Indian food then Copper Chimney is a must-visit – even if you aren’t shopping at Westfield. And I was incorrect – sometimes large groups can keep their quality very high!
ADDRESS: Copper Chimney, Unit 1028 – Southern Terrace, Westfield London, Ariel Way, Shepherds Bush, London – W12 7GA
Tel: 020 8059 4439