Jamavar is an upmarket Indian restaurant in Mayfair that opened within the past year, but has already built a very good reputation. Shiima and I first came across Jamavar at Taste of London 2017, when I had their utterly delicious Malabar Chicken Wings. Then a couple weeks ago, Jamavar was featured on Celebrity Masterchef. The restaurant looked beautiful and the food looked delicious. So we immediately booked for dinner.
Jamavar is on Mount Street in Mayfair, which is roughly seven minutes walk from Bond Street station. It’s a thoroughly opulent area, and Jamavar fits perfectly, as once you step inside the restaurant you are taken by the opulence of the décor. It’s dimly lit, with a lot of gold finish on the lavish décor. There is also a good amount of excellent Indian-inspired artwork hung around the restaurant.
We were checked in by the hostess and immediately led to your table in the near corner of the room. Very quickly, our cheerful waiter attended to us with the drinks menu.
What we ordered
The virgin cocktails on offer were quite intriguing so we ordered them. Thandai for me, and Ganjan for Shiima.
Moments later, the waiter arrived with the food menu. We were spoilt for choice, as there are a lot of mouth-watering dishes. We powered through though lol.
For starters, Shiima ordered Chandni Chowk Ki Aloo Tikki, and Vegetable samosas. The vegetable samosas aren’t on the menu, but our waiter told us about it after I ordered Venison Samosas. I also ordered Andhra Beef Uthappam, and Malabar Prawns (Malabar Chicken wings weren’t on the menu).
For mains, Shiima ordered Old Delhi Butter Chicken with Basmati Rice. I ordered Adraki Lamb Chops. We also ordered mixed breads to share.
Review of the food
Both were fantastic. Shiima wasn’t keen on my Thandai because it had ginger beer, but I really liked it, and the taste of ginger beer was minimal. It mostly tasted fruity, and the kaffir leaf in the drink gave it a unique taste. I, and Shiima of course, really enjoyed her Ganjan. It was very citrusy, and not too sweet. It was a refreshing cocktail.
We were given (complimentary, I think lol) papadums and chutneys before our food arrived. I haven’t really eaten many papadums over the years, but these were nice and crisp. Also, they went really well with the chutneys.
Both our samosas were very delicious, although very different. And that isn’t only because of the filling. Our samosas were shaped differently and the pastry was also different. Her pastry was tastier, but my venison filling was better. Shiima’s Aloo tikki is similar to a chaat, but the potato tikki in the dish is very different, and although I avoid potatoes, this was delicious.
My Malabar prawns were really tasty too. I’d guess the prawns were flash fried and tossed in Malabar marinade/sauce. From memory, I think I prefer the chicken wings. My Andhra Beef Uthappam are very similar to Rola Wala’s naan sliders. The slow cooked pulled beef topping was delicious and very well seasoned.
I must begin with the mixed naan breads. Oh my God, Delicious! We love fresh bread anyway, but these were really good.
Shiima’s Butter Chicken curry was really tasty. It was the perfect spice level for her (I’d prefer more of a kick) and it was creamy. There was also a good quantity of pulled chicken in the curry. I don’t need to say much about the basmati rice do I? No, I don’t lol.
My adraki lamb chops were perfectly cooked and seasoned with cumin, onions, and ginger. Which is very similar to Nigerian suya spice, but without the heat. I would’ve loved the lamb to be spicier, but regardless, it was delicious.
We’d eaten a fair bit, but we were still up for dessert. This was a much tougher choice because we weren’t really sold on any of the desserts. But after consulting with our waiter, we went for Mango Rasmalai … we didn’t like it. The texture was a bit odd. And Wikipedia led us to believe it would be “a rich cheesecake without crust”. This was not the case.
We really enjoyed Jamavar. The food was excellent and the service was top notch. The décor is also very beautiful, which makes it ideal for special occasions or a date where you are looking to impress. I also recommend for foodies, and those that love Indian cuisine. But do bare in mind that Jamavar is expensive. Then again, you ought to expect that with the opulent location, the décor, and the standard of service. I won’t include their excellent food in that, because I know cheap food done right is bloody delicious as well.
Dress Code: Smart Casual
Amen’s Star Dish: Andhra Beef Uthappam
Shiima’s Star Dish: Vegetable samosa
Price: £40+ each (excluding alcohol)
Rating: 4.5 out of 5