Being from the South Aasia continent, I try and avoid Indian/Pakistani restaurants as much as I can cus there are so many other cuisines other than what your mama can cook. However, over the last few years Indian restaurants have come such a long way!
I first heard about Hankies when they invited me to try out the Eid menu a few months ago, and I loved the concept, and the food was casual but so good. So, naturally, when I heard Hankies had opened a brand new restaurant in the Montcalm Hotel I had to check it out, and I’m so glad I did!
The restaurant is so different to their original concept restaurant in Piccadilly. It is much more of a sit down, sophisticated feel where I’d happily take my family.
Before we go onto the food, I cannot even begin to explain the excitement I felt when I saw the crockery.. it was beautiful and I wanted it all! First of all the plates were blue as were the glasses that reminded me of the Goblet of Fire in Harry Potter or something out of Game of Thrones. My prayers had been answered!
Onto the food, the menu is simple – small sharing plates with their speciality being, obviously, their Hankies romali rotis – named so because they are folded like hankerchiefs and are thin enough to read through apparently – tried and tested!!
They have 2 flavours – 1 plain and another stuffed, we went for both. Each portion came with 2 folded rotis aka Hankies.
The roti was great. The plain very plain, but I loved it. It was reminded me of a very happy place when my mum and I used to make rotis when I was very young. (Sigh, nostalgia) The spinach one was stuffed with feta and was very oily and a bit heavy to eat.
We ordered the Bhel Puri, Chicken Tikka, Grill Prawns, Butter Chicken with Plain Naan. The chicken tikka was veryyy chilli for me, over the years I’ve become somewhat of a weakling when it comes to spiciness. The butter chicken is a bit of a standard dish but I loved it as it wasn’t that spicy and after the chicken tikka is exactly what I needed. Although in hindsight, tasted like any other butter chicken I’ve ever had, but to be fair how many variations can you get of what is a very standard dish to begin with I suppose.
The bhel was amaaazing and really hit the spot. Sometimes bhels aren’t crunchy enough or have no taste, but this one was one of my favourite bhels I’ve had in a restaurant by far. It was crunchy, strong hints of spice but not overbearingly so, and tangy! I loved the tang in it! Love!
I genuinely enjoyed everything, I don’t think there was anything on the menu that we had that I could fault. Everything about our meal was great, the food, the setting, the service – oh the service. We went on a weekday afternoon and it was pretty quiet but my friend and I have a tendency to talk a lot and didn’t notice the restaurant slowly quietened down to the point where we were the only ones left in the restaurant. The manager came over a little after 430pm saying the restaurant closed at 3pm but they didn’t want to disturb us as we looked like we were enjoying ourselves! I was sooo embarrassed but the manager was so lovely about it … bear in mind I usually don’t tell restaurants I’m a blogger when I visit. Even though I was super embarrassed but it was sooo refreshing that in a world of “you had the table for an hour and a half and you can’t order dessert because we need the table back” (true story!), there are restaurants out there that actually value their customers experience even if it is to the detriment of themselves! Just for that, Hankies has very rapidly made it to the very top of my list. Thank you Hankies for restoring my faith in humanity!!!
Food – 8 out of 10
Service – 8 out of 10
Atmosphere – 6 out of 10
Experience – 8 out of 10
Overall, giving Hankies Marble Arch a total TLH score of 8 out of 10.
Address: 81 Upper Berkeley Street, Marylebone, London, W1H 7PP
Halal Status: Everything on the menu is halal except the duck, alcohol is also served
Closest Station: Marble Arch (Central Line)
Have you been? Let me know your thoughts
Till next time,