soft shell crab starter

Indian Essence, Petts Wood

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Over the bank holiday weekend, I was lucky enough to be invited along to review Atul Kochhar’s restaurant for a second time – the first time was around two years ago when I was heavily pregnant and had to just sit and watch as hubby tucked in to a shelfish platter and sipped on a pineapple mojito…this time I didn’t have to hold back 🙂 Here’s my summary of another delicious meal…


Indian Essence is the collaboration of Michelin star Chef Atul Kochhar and restauranteur Jitindar Singh. The wealth of experience that these two bring together is demonstrated in the stylish decor and excitement of the diners as they scan through the menu – this is not your usual local Indian restaurant.


We were warmly welcomed and well looked after. A Sommelier was on hand to make suggestions and keep our glasses topped up while the waiters ensured we had everything we wanted.


There are three menu’s available – a set menu, tasting, and A la Carte. Whilst digging in to our homemade mango, apple and tomato chutneys and crispy fresh popadoms, we chose from the A la Carte and started with ‘Peppered crab’ – a whole spiced, buttered soft shell crab tinged with crushed peppers and garlic cream, served with a small salad and a sharp dip that cut through the richness of the crab. For main I chose the ‘Kebab platter’ – a selection of king prawn, salmon, chicken tikka and lamb chop kebabs, all beautifully cooked with spices that sung through but didn’t overpower the flavours of the fish and meat. We shared sides of rich, creamy, tomatoey Paneer Makhan Palak, yellow daal and a slightly spicy Pulihaari rice. For dessert, the spiced mango crumble served with vanilla ice cream really hit the spot and ended an amazing, flavour packed meal.


The sommelier very cheerful and greeted us with an unusual cocktail menu and an impressive wine list once we were seated. I started with a pineapple and ginger mojito – refreshing and zingy and just the right amount of sweetness. To accompany our meal a bottle of French Grenache went

perfectly with both fish and meat dishes and really came to life with the food. To finish, a Viognier dessert wine held its own against my sweet mango crumble.


Five star Indian cuisine right on your doorstep.


2 thoughts on “Indian Essence, Petts Wood

  1. Hi Regan
    Thanks for connecting enjoy Spain and we’ll try for some Brockley Brewery Ales when you return.

    Matt Housden

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