Restaurant Review: Yaatra at Old Westminster Fire Station

This fall, Westminster’s former fire station, tucked away from the main thoroughfares, has become home to an Indian dining experience.

Yaatra offers a “journey through ancient India”, but there is a lot that smacks of fusion, with delicately spiced meats, accompanied by rich curry sauces.

The venue, formerly Mathura, has five dining rooms, but we were in the main restaurant, the Ruby Room – a spacious and airy space with just about the right noise levels.

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We shared a basket of three types of poppadoms – the most striking of which was fantastic sago, almost like popcorn and sprinkled with curry powder – with berry chutney and mint sauce.

Scallops, ribs and monos are among the entrees but we opted for the Amritsari Prawn and the Khubani Paneer Tikka.

The prawns were frankly massive and marinated in star fruit and yogurt.

The paneer was even better, the soft cheese combined with the sweet and tangy flavors of the apricot and cilantro chutneys, and accompanied by the crunch of a quinoa and lentil cat.

For main, my mate couldn’t resist the ‘surf and turf’ Chettinad Lobster and Beef Steak – tender, well spiced and seasoned, and luxurious.

I opted for the more restrained Madurai Newlyn Turbot and Clam Kiri Hodi, which are served with a fragrant coconut and pandan leaf curry on a bed of rice noodles.

It’s subtle but tasty.

The meal was completed with a light and sweet Rasmalai strawberry cheesecake and a chocolate, orange and coffee mouse respectively.

Not much remains of the old fire station – just an incongruous pole by the bar – but what the venue has is a balance of luxury and comfort, well managed by attentive staff.

Address: Old Westminster Fire Station, 4 Greycoat Place, SW1P 1SB

Website: www.yaatrarestaurant.com

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