The recently established Indian Mango, located on a Laugavegur side street, is probably the best addition to the Icelandic restaurant landscape in recent years. The owner, George Holmes, comes from the Goa region in India, and the menu is inspired by his native traditions.
The restaurant prides itself on producing Indian cuisine the authentic way – no short-cuts allowed. Holmes, himself an experienced chef from the Four Seasons chain, places a premium on the quality of the materials and the service he provides. He is a gracious host and took great care in making our visit an enjoyable one. The menu has a rich selection of meat dishes but also offers an array of vegetarian and fish courses, as well as suitable children’s meals. As a starter, my companion and I selected the Kathi kebab chicken and Malii tikka chicken. Both courses were delicately prepared and tasted great, though a word must also be reserved for the nice presentation of the dish.
We decided to give our host a carte blanche on selecting our main course. He recommended the beef Xacutti, a traditional Goan dish, and duck masala. The duck was excellent, but I could hardly describe the Beef Xacutti favourably enough. The sweet taste of coconut complemented the spicy meat perfectly. The rice, imported by Indian Mango to meet the owner’s strict quality demands, proved to be something entirely different from the ordinary off-the-shelf variety one might receive elsewhere.
A great accompaniment to the main course was the mango lassi, a drink made from yoghurt and mango juice. It was a new discovery for me, but I’ll admit that I have since been all over the internet in search of good lassi recipes.
As good as the main course was, I was still not prepared for what our host had in store for us for dessert. I took a mango ice cream, a delicious treat that still paled in comparison to the sun-dried mango slices and the guava fruit accompaniment. A sweeter fruit combo I have yet to taste.
I can only thank my fellow journalist, who was originally scheduled to write this review, for falling ill that particular day, allowing me to step in to enjoy the best meal I’ve had since Christmas. SBB
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