Superb Indian food and a lovely garden.
From the gorgeous 1960s house and garden to the hyper-vigilant service and unctuous curries, this restaurant has represented the peak of northern Indian dining in Bangkok for over a decade. If it’s a well-executed butter chicken or chicken tandoori you want, this is the place. The 10-course tasting menu takes the cuisine in a more modern, but no less rewarding, direction.
This review took place in July 2018 and is based on a visit to the restaurant without the restaurant's knowledge. For more on BK's review policy, click here.
This sleek house-and-garden has delighted fans of northern Indian food since 2006 with its no-nonsense versions of some of the subcontinent’s most popular dishes: chicken tandoori, dal, butter chicken, you name it.
It took a decade, and the arrival of chef Amit Kumar, for there to be any substantial changes to the formula. Nowadays Michelin aspirations manifest in a 10-course tasting menu (B1,800/person) of inspector-baiting dainty morsels and smeared sauces.
We’re all for invention, but feel no shame in sticking to the beaten path of hefty curries, biryani and grilled meats. A glance around the ornate dining room (special, not stuffy or stuck-in-time like some other Indian institutions) on our last visit told us we weren’t alone.
Still, chances are your meal will start with a complimentary amuse-bouche of the delicate variety—a delicious one in the case of our dense and tart gram flour cake—but you’ll find much comfort in Indus’s basics. As an appetizer, the vegetable samosas (B150/3 pieces) expertly avoid falling into the usual trap of being greasy, with a well-spiced filling of potato and green pea.
The garlic naan comes elastic and chewy (B120), the basmati rice (B180) fragrant with saffron. You’ll definitely want both sides, as the butter chicken (B390) is considerably more tomato gravy than chicken—a minor quibble given the gravy’s lip-smacking butteriness and the chicken’s smoky flavor and tender texture.
Speaking of tender, the nawabi raan (seven-hour slow-cooked leg of mutton, B990/1,690) is a dish utterly deserving of overused descriptors like “fall-off-the-bone” and “melt-in-your-mouth,” and pops with cardamom and cumin spices.
If that’s all sounding very gut-busting, do yourself a favor and order the gin-based Cucumber Basil Martini (B300) from the short-but-sharp cocktail list to cut through the heaviness.
There are occasions where Indus could be accused of playing it safe; the Hyderabadi specialty of bhagare baingan (curried baby eggplants, B320) didn’t deliver on its promise of nutty spiciness and had us longing for its smokier eggplant relation, baingan bharta. But if it’s well-executed staples rather than surprises you want, this is the place. For that reason, you can’t go past the syrupy, spongy gulab jamun (dumplings of reduced milk in cardamom and rose syrup, B140) for dessert.
Throw in hyper-vigilant service staff that’ll ladle your curry and all but read your mind, as well as the chill outdoor garden, and it’s little wonder that a table at Indus is still in high demand.
|Address:||Indus, 71 Sukhumvit Soi 26, Bangkok, Thailand|
|Price Range:||BBB - BBBB|
|Open since:||July, 2006|
|Opening hours:||daily 10:30am-1:30pm, 5-9:30pm|
|Reservation recommended, Parking available, Dress requirements|
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