Haandi is almost opposite Harrods, with another entrance at the back from which you go down a couple of steps into the dining room; this has a large window into the kitchen. I come here regularly and it is hard to think of anywhere serving better Indian food than this in the UK, all at very fair prices. If you try it make sure you have the murgh burra tikka, which is particularly high quality chicken tikka, while the fish tikka is also excellent. Vegetables curries are also superb here e.g. aloo gobi has lovely texture, while channa is another favourite, with tender chickpeas and a rich, spicy sauce. A chef change in April 2009 had no discernible effect on the standard of cooking. Notes from a sample meal follow.
Service was excellent throughout, attentive and efficient. Popadoms are unusually delicate here, but the pickles were nothing special; out of a jar I fear. A starter of king prawns was costly at £16 but did feature no less than five large prawns, cooked in the tandoor, tender and tasty (14/20). Even better was a starter of fish cooked in the tandoor, timed very well with a lovely, smoky taste (15/20).
My main course was cumin chicken, very capable (13/20), while aloo gobi was in no way slimy and fully retained the texture of the vegetables. Dhal was excellent (14/20), as was another fish main course, coconut-flavoured fish fillets (Machli naryai pani) with a curry sauce (14/20). Rice is OK here but not their greatest strength. Naan bread was quite good but was really only 12/20 at best; it needed to be lighter and fluffier in texture ideally. However paratha is excellent (14/20). Halwa was quite good, but kulfi had too much saffron and had a crystalline texture (11/20). To improve they could make some pickles (or buy better ones) and improve the texture of the naan. However, despite these minor flaws much of the cooking is very good indeed. The portion sizes are very generous and prices are very fair given the location. They can even cook bhindi properly, a rare occurrence indeed.