Nirvana Kitchen at The Montcalm Hotel, London Marble Arch
Montcalm have a small group of hotels and serviced apartments in London. There are two hotels in Marble Arch, suites in the city and a couple more hotels there. And, I’ve dined at the city hotel pubs and restaurants on several occasions. Quintessentially British, the Jugged Hare and Chiswell Street Dining Rooms serve the kind of food that would hopefully convince any visitor that the English can cook.
I still haven’t quite worked out WHY there’s a Pan-Asian restaurant at the Montcalm. I’ve been trying to work out whether the other restaurant in the hotel is open for lunch and dinner and it’s not clear at all from the website. That said, we really enjoyed our dinner at Nirvana Kitchen and were impressed by the quality of food and the helpful service.
We started the evening with two small dishes. There’s a good selection on the menu from ceviche to salads. We picked the crispy salted squid with cucumber, lemongrass and ginger sauce – the kind of dish that can really show up a weak kitchen.
It was delicious, with the perfect balance of sweetness and heat and with a great crispy batter on the perfectly cooked squid.
The black cod, by comparison, was a unique and very successful dish, with a crispy harissa coating and a delicately sweet Thai som tam (green papaya) dip.
And, just because, we enjoyed a portion of Roti Canai, a buttery rich bread from malaysia
We picked one dish from the charcoal grill and one from ‘pots’
Our Chilean Seabass was beautifully presented, wrapped in a banana leaf with a small pickled cucumber garnish.
The fish had a sweet sour and sticky tamarind glaze. Very delicious. I didn’t want to share.
Our final dish of the evening and the piece de resistance was lobster curry, served in a coconut, with fresh coconut water and oriental yellow curry sauce.
Apart from looking stunning, the curry was rich and hot! All too often hotel kitchens compromise on the heat in dishes that really don’t deserve taming. And the result is mediocre. Nothing like that here.
Neither of us was planning on ordering dessert, but the lure of a chocolate fondant was just too great
Overall, we thoroughly enjoyed our dinner at Nirvana Kitchen and I’d be happy to return. There wasn’t a single dish that I felt was lacking and we thought the service was attentive without being in the least obtrusive.
Many thanks to Nirvana Kitchen for the opportunity to review
61 Upper Berkeley Street,
Marylebone, London, W1H 7PP