Test Drives

Benares at Home 

So what's Benares at Home all about?

It is exactly as it sounds, the high-end Mayfair restaurant (they're on Berkeley Square) repurposed as a food delivery operation. In their normal day-to-day operation as a restaurant, Benares offers a fine-dining twist on Indian food, but how does that translate to an at-home setting? We decided to find out. 

What's on the menu? 

For a restaurant that's only just starting as a delivery operation, there's quite the extensive menu - which you can see here.

Simply put, It's broken down into starters, tandoor dishes, curries, biryani and sides - with dozens of dishes available overall, many signature dishes from the restaurant. On top of that, there are weekly changing specials-of-the-day which have included dishes like Adraki Lamb Chops (Chilli & Ginger marinated Lamb Chops, Pickled Onion, Herb Chutney). So, whenever you order, there will always be something new on the menu. Prices are definitely veering towards more high-end, but as you're ordering from a Mayfair restaurant, that shouldn't really be a surprise.

So what did you try? 

For our meal, we ordered from across the menu, to get a good feel for it all. Some dishes travelled better than others - but that's pretty much par for the course with any delivery service. The below selection is about right as a generous meal for two people:

roomThings kicked off with Aloo Tikki Chaat - described as "Indian style Hash Brown Potato, Yogurt, Mint, Tamarind, Pickle Onion"  - although the "hash brown" description may not be quite fitting as it doesn't retain any crispiness after delivery. Good nonetheless, and the one dish possible to plate rather well at home (even if we do say so ourselves)

roomThey may not look pretty, but the tandoor Prawn Kasundi was excellent (Kasundi Mustard & Raw Mango marinated Tandoor grilled Prawn, Mint Chutney and Pickle Onions - £11)

roomMoving into mains, this collection is the Murg Makhani (Benares signature smoky chicken simmered in tomato and fenugreek - £21) with garlic naan (£4) and Dal Tadka (Slow cooked yellow lentils with cumin and garlic - £8). The Makhani was glorious, in particular. 

roomThis we actually saved for the next day - their biryani that's available as either chicken, lamb or veg and "layered with Premium Basmati Rice flavoured with Rose and Mint" (£28). Again, a phenomenally good dish (and it went well with some leftover dal from above).

roomFinally, there's just one dessert - the Gulab Jamun (made with milk solids, rose syrup and sugar - £7). Very sweet, but worth getting to share.

How about vegetarian options?

Plenty in all sections - vegetable samosas, paneer tikka, a sag aloo main and the vegan Chhole (Slow cooked, North Indian style Chickpeas flavoured with Black Cardamom, Cinnamon and Cloves - £16) among others, not to mention all the sides. Vegetarians are very well catered for. 

And drinks?

If you haven't managed to pop down to the shops for those "essentials", you'll find a small selection of wines (and Champagne) starting at £33. We'd say it's best to organise your drink ahead of time.

Overall thoughts? 

As far as Indian restaurant deliveries go, Benares is definitely at the high end of things. That said, portions were generous and the two mains - the makhani and the biryani - were both excellent. The restaurant has pivoted pretty well into its delivery operation - if you're a fan of the restaurant and are wishing you could return, this is a pretty great alternative in the meantime. 

Hot Dinners were sent a Benares at Home delivery. Prices are correct at the time of writing. 

 

More about Benares at Home

Where is it? 12a Berkeley Square, Mayfair, London W1J 6BS

How to book: They're available on Deliveroo, Uber Eats and the Central London delivery site Supper. If you live in Mayfair, you can also use click and collect

Find out more: Visit their website or follow them on Instagram @benaresofficial.

 

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