Anand Ghotikar, Head chef-walla at Dishoom, fills us in on what to expect from the excellent new eatery.

What does Dishoom mean to you?

For me, Dishoom means family. From the day you join the team you are welcomed in, supported and made to feel instantly like a member of a big, slightly barmy family. There is even a picture of my father on the wall in the dining room, which is a really special reminder to me of how important family is in everything that we do.

I also think of Dishoom Edinburgh as a love letter to Bombay. Dishoom pays homage to the old Irani cafés of Bombay – lovely welcoming places opened by Zoroastrian immigrants from Iran at the start of the last century.

At their peak, there were around 400 of these cafés, but now there’s only a handful left.

This is such a shame. These cafés were truly special places that broke down barriers.

They were the first places in Bombay where folk from any caste, class or religion could enjoy a glass of chai or a hearty meal – people from all different walks of life would literally rub shoulders and break bread together.

These cafés helped to make Bombay more tolerant, more diverse. As a chef in Dishoom, it is my duty to make sure that we preserve this heritage and continue to bring people together through our passion for Bombay food and culture.

What can people expect when they come for a meal?

A big, warm welcome! The whole team is so excited to welcome people into our new home. First of all our guests will see the open kitchen on the ground floor, then head up to the dining room on the first floor, which has beautiful views over St. Andrew Square.

Our all-day sharing menu pays homage to our favourite Irani cafés, street stalls, restaurants and grills. It’s real Bombay comfort food with Carl’s delicious drinks as a great accompaniment.

We also serve a fantastic breakfast until 11.45am every day. I think Edinburghers will absolutely love the Bacon Naan Roll and the Sausage Naan Roll – fresh naan, made by hand and to order, wrapped around with bacon or sausages by Ramsay of Carluke, and finished with a little cream cheese, coriander and chilli jam. Too good!

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What are some of your favourite dishes from the menu?

There are lots. But if I had to choose, I would say the Chef’s Special, Lamb Raan. This is a whole leg of lamb marinated in chilli, garlic and ginger, braised overnight with spices, then flame-grilled, sliced and dressed with fresh lime. It’s a really amazing dish – so tender and juicy! We also put the pulled meat from the leg in a bun – the Lamb Raan Bun – and serve it with a Dishoom ‘slaw’, some Sali crisp-chips and a couple of chillies! Delicious.

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The delightful lamb raan. Picture: Dishoom

I would also definitely recommend our House Black Daal, which is cooked for 24 hours for a lovely rich flavour. It’s delicious with a handmade roomali roti (handkerchief-thin bread).

The Bacon Naan Roll is an absolute winner at breakfast and our Kejriwal (two fried eggs atop chilli cheese toast) is another favourite.

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The bacon naan roll. Picture: Dishoom

What are you looking forward to in terms of working in Edinburgh?

I am very much looking forward to getting to know a new city. My family and I moved to London in 2012 when I became Sous Chef at Dishoom Covent Garden before being promoted to Senior Sous Chef and now Head Chef.

I have loved my time in London, but my family and I are really excited about being in Edinburgh and seeing all that the city has to offer – it has such a great food scene that I am eager to explore.

READ MORE: Friday interview: Carl Brown, Daru-wallah (bar development manager) at Dishoom

Why should people visit Dishoom in Edinburgh?

Because for us, there is nothing more important than bringing people together in beautiful and democratic shared spaces.

We have put so much heart into making sure that Dishoom Edinburgh is just this – a space where all are welcome and where fantastic food and drink are served with genuine warmth by our awesome team.

We like to think that our love for Bombay food and culture comes through in everything that we do and we’re thrilled we can now share this with all of Edinburgh.

Let us know what you think

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