The restaurant, co-owned by Samyukta Nair and Rohit Ghai, who opened Jamavar earlier this year, gets its inspiration from the Dabbawalas of Mumbai, men who use a complex route of local trains, handcarts and bicycles to deliver home-cooked meals across the city to their intended recipient, each marked by an individual code. It puts us in mind of Lunchbox, the exquisite Mariage Blanc film produced by Ritesh Batra that sets long-distance romance against this carefully crafted system of food delivery.
Bombay Bustle takes its design lead from the trains on the network with the dining room an opulent take on an old first-class railway coach with pewter bars and pale green leather banquettes.
Rohit Ghai, Jamavar’s executive chef is creating a menu based on Mumbai family recipes passed down by his mother, as well as the lunch boxes Nair enjoyed during her time at school in Mumbai.
Much of the food will be served to the table for sharing in dishes based on typical dabbas – the tiered tiffin-style lunchboxes used to carry the food during delivery.
At lunch, these dab will be able to be ordered as quick all-inclusive meals, much like they are in Mumbai today, making it perfect for solo diners.
Dishes will include misal pav topped with potato salli, a lentil curry with crunchy toppings; a biryani-style sea bass and scallop tawa pulao; whole spiced spit-roasted chicken; and a Kerala-style lamb stew served with string hoppers and toasted desiccated coconut.
A second dining room will be inspired by art deco Mumbai and traditional station railway waiting rooms with contrasting combinations of vibrant pink clay plaster walls with bottle green and pink leather upholstery and cut glass screens. Tables will be marked with the Dabbawalas' distinctive alpha-numeric markings, produced for the restaurant by the Nutan Mumbai Tiffin Box Suppliers Association.
We're particularly excited by the dessert bar, where diners can watch puddings such as double ka meetha – a kind of bread pudding –made in front of them.
Opening: late November
|What||Bombay Bustle restaurant Mayfair|
|Where||Dabbawala, 29 Maddox Street , Mayfair, W1S 21A | MAP|
|Nearest tube||Oxford Circus (underground)|
30 Nov 17 – 07 Dec 18, Opening hours tbc shortly
|Website||For more information and booking details, click here|