Carlton, known for being a centre of Italian food, is also turning into a hotspot for Indian cuisine. Soon to join the likes of Chapati and Ziyka in the inner-city suburb is Bibi Ji – a new casual diner from Jessi Singh (Horn Please, Babu Ji and Sydney’s Don’t Tell Aunty) and chef and co-owner Amar Singh.
Set to open mid-next month in the former Cafe Notturno space, Bibi Ji will mark Jessi’s first Melbourne venture since he closed his Flinders Lane wine bar Mrs Singh in February last year due to continually low foot traffic in the CBD.
Bibi Ji is a 120-seat venue with an interior inspired by Indian diners. The menu includes dal makhani (a buttery and creamy Punjabi lentil dish), paneer masala (a fresh acid-set cheese served in a tomato gravy), chicken tikka masala, goat curry, pickles and chutneys.
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The casual Indian diner will also have banana-leaf thali – a meal consisting of many different components, like sambal, rice, curries and more, served on a banana-leaf platter. Jessi says his aim with Bibi Ji is “to present a fresh perspective on Indian cuisine”.