Imli

Price guide: Budget

167-169 Wardour Street, London, W1F 8WR

Price guide: Budget

Imli dining area
#48 of 115
expert-rated restaurants in London
Expert overall rating:4.2 out of 5
Food and drink:
4.2
4.2
Ambience:
3.9
3.9
Service:
3.9
3.9
Location:
4
4.0
Value for money:
4.5
4.5
Recommended for:
Backpackers / Students, Families with teenagers, Families with younger children, First-time travellers, Stag / hen parties, Nightlife, Shopping

Expert review of Imli

Good cheap Indian food served in sleek surrounds in the heart of Soho.

I’m all for sharing dishes, but tend to grit my teeth when non-Spanish restaurants claim they’re serving tapas. It’s become a trendy word in the worst sense, seems to mean something slightly different everywhere you go, and usually just causes confusion about how much food to order. At Imli, a very handy spot overseen by one of London’s most respected Indian chefs, they’re trying to make the point that the food is mostly small dishes for sharing.

Food and drink: 

The menu mixes curry house and tandoor classics (lamb rogan josh, chicken tikka masala, Goan prawn masala) with new takes on Indian street food (honey grilled duck on turmeric mash, say). Most importantly, unlike a lot of curry houses in London, everything is freshly cooked. There’s plenty for vegetarians and a ‘light and healthy’ kids’ menu (£8.95 per child) too. Finish with a traditional Indian pudding or home-made ices in contemporary flavours such as fig and ginger, raspberry and volcanic salt, and mango and basil.

Ambience: 

Tries slightly too hard to be contemporary, with orange feature lighting, colourful photographic mural, neat dark wood furniture and rectangular white plates. Expect plenty of local office workers in attendance.

Service: 

Sometimes warm, sometimes just covers the basics.

Location: 

Just a couple of minutes from Oxford Street.

Price advice: 

Barely a week goes by when my inbox doesn’t proffer some sort of discount deal from Imli, and even the standard menus are inexpensive. Lunch platters for one are £8.95 for chicken or lamb and £11.95 for seafood. On the carte, main courses are £7.50-£10.95, with sides £1.75-3.25.

Other useful branches: 

Tamarind – Imli’s ritzy, premium-priced parent – is in Mayfair; see www.tamarindrestaurant.com.

More information on Imli:

Price guide:
Budget
Type:
Restaurant
Food:
Indian, Modern, Traditional
Address:
167-169 Wardour Street, London, W1F 8WR
Telephone:
020 7287 4243
Website:
http://www.imli.co.uk
Serves:
Lunch, Dinner
Opening times:
Mon-Sat noon-11pm, Sun noon-10pm.
Accepts Credit Cards:
Yes
Reservations:
Essential at peak times

Have you been to Imli? Would you recommended it?