100 Wardour Street, Soho, London , W1F 0TN
020 7314 4002
Carom by day
Situated in the ground floor space in the same building that houses Soho Cuban restaurant and nightclub Floridita, Carom adds a glamorous Indian twist to the D&D restaurant group. The Hedonist is partial to a serving of Bollywood glamour and the interior delivers that in spades, making better use of the space than its previous incarnation as Meza, the upstairs bar of Mezzo, one of the 90s mega-brasseries.
I had been to Carom before for lunch but never for dinner. In the evening it has much more of a nightclub feel and there is a full a la carte menu. The clientele is young and the lighting dark but the atmosphere is still very friendly and easy going.
Poppadums with homemade chutneys
We started off with freshly cooked Poppadums (£2.20 )with a trio of homemade chutneys -Date and Ginger, Apple, and Mango and Chilli. None of these were too strong and none overwhelmed our delicious Champagne cocktails (£11.25).
For our starters we had Chilli Squid (£4.75), Soft Shell Crab (£6.50)and JHNGA Prawns (£7.95).
Soft Shell Crab
The squid and the prawns came from the starters menu and the prawns from the Grill Menu.
The prawns and crab were both particularly delicious with terrific spicing that didn’t overwhelm the seafood and would be a great option if you wanted something fully flavoured but lighter than a curry.
With our starters and through the meal I was drinking a slughtly sweet and sparkling Torrontes which was fruity and floral and a great accompinament to spicy food (175 ml £7.25) whilst my dining partner stuck to Prosecco Valdobbiadene Jeio Bisol (£7.45). She had three glasses so it seemed to work for her!
Keralan Fish Curry and Chennai Chicken Curry
For our mains I chose a Keralan Fish Curry (£9.75) and my dining companion had the Chennai Chicken Curry (£7.50). The chicken was pronounced moist and tender with interesting spicing but my sea bass, whilst a good piece of fish was a bit overwhelmed by the mango and coconut ginger sauce, maybe needing a lighter touch.
To accompany we had Baked Basmati Rice (£3.25) and a Peshwari Nan (£2.25). The baked rice was drier than a boiled rice but still had good flavour and made a good foil to our curries. The Peshwari Nan was the best I have tried. It was light, fragrant and sweet with none if the heaviness that can make nans hard work.
Sticky Toffee Pudding
For dessert we shared a Sticky Toffee Pudding (£4.95) that really was rich and sticky without being too heavy and which came with good vanilla ice cream.
For a fun night out eating curry with a young and buzzy crowd in the West End there is nowhere really to match Carom. Prices are very reasonable, service is friendly, attentive and helpful, and the food on occasion reaches standards that you would expect from somewhere charging a lot more.
Disclosure – we dined as guests of the restaurant.