Imli Street

167-169 Wardour Street, Soho, London

Indian street food, tapas-style

Address:167-169 Wardour Street
Map:Map & nearby
Nearest Station:Tottenham Court Road
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Opening Hours:Mon-Fri: 8 am-11 pm
Sat: 9am-12pm
Sun: 9am-10pm
Facilities & Info:
  • Party bookings accepted
  • Children welcome
  • Credit cards accepted
Imli Street picture

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About: Part of the Tamarind Collection and sister to the Michelin starred Tamarind of Mayfair, Zaika of Kensington and Tamarind of London; Imli Street serves a unique menu inspired by Indian Street cuisines.

Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, Imli Street has completely revolutionised its interior and menu which has been developed by Tamarind Collection’s multi-award winning Director of Cuisine, Alfred Prasad.

The all-day menu features a range of small dishes inspired by four distinctive elements from across the diverse regions of India to give guests a real street food inspired dining experience.

These include:
Costal Shacks – celebrating India’s vast coastline and her beach-fronts,
Food Carts – a tribute to the roadside and street stalls that have created urban legends
Railway Cuisine – in India food is a big part of the journey and most railway stations are famous for their iconic dishes
Beyond Borders – sub-continental influenced repertoire of Indian food as we know it

In addition a combination of international breakfast and selection of breakfast dishes with an Indian twist is served daily with a takeaway option.

The ground floor is a light, fashionable and comfortable space, which includes a destination bar overlooking the hustle and bustle of Soho with a buzzing dining room and discreet back area for private parties. The downstairs area with exposed brickwork and cool, contemporary furnishings provides laidback sitting and a casual ambiance.

The 130-seat urban street style venue opens 7 days a week.

Imli Street features in these AIL lists...

Great places to eat with your kids
The tapas-sized portions at Indian restaurant Imli are ideal for little ones, plus the restaurant is usually so busy no one will bat an eyelid if your child starts screaming.

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"Indian street food, tapas-style"

Review Rating: 7 / 10
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Imli have got two current trends nailed: Indian street food and small plates. It’s a very different story to that of their sister restaurant, Michelin-starred Tamarind, as here prices are cheapish and service is super-fast, with dishes coming out as they’re ready. It’s the perfect recipe for bums on seats and the place is suitably rammed.

But it wouldn’t work if the food wasn’t up to scratch, which it is. Squid is crispy and fiery, with a Thousand Island-style dressing - always a puzzling combo, then again fried squid + mayonnaise is rather heavenly. The kheema pav is, to namedrop another trend, as close as Indian cuisine gets to a burger, consisting of finely minced lamb with peas, lightly spiced with cumin and ginger, and served with toasted baguette.

Fried chicken wings are coated in pepper and served with a bright yellow raita sweetened with honey and coloured by turmeric. Honey-grilled duck, sliced and pink in the middle, is cloaked in a fennelly tamarind sauce, and on the side there is mashed potato with liberal amounts of cumin seeds.

Another great dish is the grilled paneer, which pairs slabs of creamy cheese with spicy broccoli. The fish nimbu wall is the blandest, and at £13.50 the most expensive dish, the perch is slightly overcooked and although it hints at lime leaves it lacks any real depth.

A cooling mango and basil sorbet doesn’t quite work as the sweet and grassy flavours are at odds with each other, but rice pudding is good, heavily scented with saffron and cardamom.

While the wine list is unremarkable there is an appealing choice of cocktails - a gin-based apple martini made with schnapps is very refreshing, and the non-alcoholic passion fruit lassis is sweet and creamy.

Six dishes plus dessert was enough to stuff us full, coming to around £80 including drinks.

Leila reviewed Imli Street on Wed 11 Jul 2012

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