Indu is in a dimly lit, terracotta-clad basement deep under George Street. By Sam Prince (Mejico and Zambrero), it takes a refreshed approach to Indian food. It focuses on the rural flavours and cookery elements of southern-Indian and Sri Lankan villages.
A central dosa kitchen produces flat, lentil dosas (flame-seared, turmeric-cured salmon with cardamom aioli is a stand-out). A mirrored archway separates two main dining sections, and shelves of spirits reach the ceiling.
Highlights include a ceviche-esque sea-bass dish served with coconut vinegar on a bed of crisped string hopper noodles; soft, dense beetroot croquettes complemented by a green-chilli and garlic raita made with house-made hung yogurt; and a lamb curry served with buttery marrow still in the bone.
The caramelised pineapple dessert, with cardamom dulce de leche, gingery granita and yogurt jelly, is equal parts experimental and eloquent. The cocktail offerings are reflective of the traditional elements of Indian food. They include ingredients such as mango chutney, masala-spiced gin and curry leaves.
The space, a collaborative design by Matt Woods, Project Z and muralist Ash Keating, is earthy; bells hang from the ceiling, there are spice-filled terracotta barrels and exposed bricks.
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