Delhi Social

65 Richmond Road, London, TW1 3AW, United Kingdom

Back to search results

Delhi Social is the creation of chef Manish Sharma and general manager Avi Patel, who previously worked together at Black Salt on East Sheen. It is in a former pub called Wags n’ Tales, a dog-themed establishment that sold cakes by day and beer at night. It is a large place seating 60 diners currently but with capacity for 110, plus another 40 in the former beer garden at the back. The menu now is firmly in Indian territory, and will be familiar to those who know Black Salt. Mr Sharma Manish Sharma had previously worked at Copper Chimney and before that at Jamavar and Kahani. He uses some of the same suppliers as at his previous venue, including H&M Meats.

There was a short wine list, with for example Weingut S.A. Prum Solitar Riesling Trocken 2022 at £36 for a bottle that you can find for £14 in the high street, Chateau Beaumont 2019 at £49 compared to its retail price of £19, and Laurent Perrier La Cuvee Brut at £79 for a wine that will set you back £49 in a shop. A quite wide range of beers were offered with six on tap, including Kirin Ichiban lager and the local Twickenham Ales Session IPA.

Two kinds of popadoms came with very good spicy tomato chutney, as well as the staple lime pickle and mango chutney. Kale bhajia is a dish that always impressed me at Black Salt, and here it was every bit as good. Forget about the often-soggy onion bhajias that we have all eaten in local high street tandooris. The bhajias here are beautifully crisp and well judged, bursting with flavour and lively spices (16/20). Less successful was aloo tikki chaat that used purple potato to go with the yogurt, mixed chutneys and chaat masalas, with a few pomegranate seeds for freshness. For me this didn’t have enough tamarind flavour and the spices did not really sing out in the way that they ideally should in a dish with a fairly bland base of potatoes (12/20). A lamb chop was in much safer territory, a large chop cooked pink and liberally covered with a spicy marinade. The meat had good flavour, the cooking was accurate and the marinade sauce packed plenty of flavour (15/20). A tandoori malai mushroom dish flavoured with Cheddar cheese worked better than I thought it might, served piping hot and served with mint chutney (14/20).

Methi murgh is chicken in a fenugreek curry made with onions, tomatoes, spices and plenty of (ideally fresh) fenugreek. This version was lovely, rich and bursting with the nutty sweetness of the fenugreek, the chicken pieces tender (15/20). Also terrific were tandoori prawns, large shellfish marinaded in spices and cooked in the tandoor until just tender. It is not easy to cook large prawns accurately but these were spot on (easily 15/20). Dhal makhani was excellent, made overnight and having an excellent smoky flavour as well as good texture (15/20). A side dish of aloo gobi was particularly impressive, with the cauliflower and potato retaining their texture, the spicing vibrant and there being a very precise amount of vinegar to impart some sharpness to the vegetables (16/20). Naan bread was very good, supple and served hot.

Pista kulfi had plenty of pistachio flavour and well-judged texture, served at just the right temperature (14/20). Carrot halwa was also pleasant, the texture perhaps a little crumblier than the very best versions (13/20). The service was very attentive, and the bill came to £53 per person for ample food and plenty of beer to drink. Delhi Social is serving some really top-notch dishes even on its fourth night of operation, which this was. To have delivered a meal with just one or two very minor teething issues so soon after opening says a lot about the skills in the kitchen. I will happily return, and I’m sure that Delhi Social will prosper as word spreads about the high calibre of the cooking here.

Further reviews: 28th Dec 2023

Add a comment


User comments

  • John Curtin

    I’ve had very good meals at Dastaan and Black Salt. Went to Delhi Social for lunch today (Dec16th) and the food was very good - think it has the edge over Black Salt. Will be back.