Dining out at Indian Night, Chelmsford

PUBLISHED: 17:10 21 October 2013 | UPDATED: 17:10 21 October 2013




Chelmsford’s Indian Night is the recently-opened sister restaurant to the award-winning Braintree restaurants Merchant Spice and Balti Night. As you pull into the car park you’re greeted by an impressive, elephant water feature near the entrance. Inside the restaurant has seats for 150, but its clever design with dining on different levels and contemporary black and red interior gives it an intimate and exclusive aura.

The menu is probably the most extensive I’ve seen in a restaurant offering Indian cuisine and each of the hot curries had chillies drawn next to it to denote the heat factor. The dishes are also carefully described, tempting you to step outside of your curry comfort zone. While we checked out the menu, we enjoyed poppadums with eight different kinds of pickles and raitas, four spicy and four mild – all very moreish. With our minds finally made up it was to be sheek kebab to begin, then lamb peshwari marinated with tandoori spices and cooked with green peppers onion and coconut plus king prawn rangila paneer sag made with the chef’s own herb and spice combination in a creamy spinach and cheese sauce, accompanied by onion bhaji and a pilau rice to share. The food was both expertly cooked and presented and full of wonderfully transparent essences, so you could really taste the individual ingredients, rather than it just being a heavy, cloying curry sauce. The restaurant hosts regular musical tribute nights and this month there are appearances from Elvis, Michael Buble, Rod Stewart and Robbie Williams – what a line up. Indian Night is also open on Christmas Day and Boxing Day if you fancy a break with tradition this year. For us, there was no room for any of the ice cream desserts on offer, however, we did enjoy fresh filter coffee, with mint chocolates and complimentary brandy and Irish cream liqueurs – a fine way to round off a very pleasant evening.

Useful to know

The total bill came to £54 for two people enjoying two courses, drinks and coffees. This is an independent review, featuring a restaurant selected and experienced by our food and wine editor. The restaurant was not told it was being reviewed

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