They call her the lillasyster and she’s making Kungsholmen that little bit hotter, in every sense of the word.YLC was thrilled to check out award-winning chef Karim’s Razaul’s new addition to the Indian Garden family.
Hot new additions require hot new places to dwell and Indian Garden is set in the upcoming and vibrant area of Lindhagen, close to the water. There’s plenty of room outside to enjoy a cold Cobra with your curry, while the inside is European-chic-meets-Indian-interior-decor. This twinning of cultures is mirrored in the way the food, served on Villeroy & Boch new wave plates, manages to be authentically Indian, but with traces of Swedish influence. It works for the most part.
It’s been over a year since YLC reviewed Indian Garden’s 2 restaurants in Södermalm so we were more than ready to get tasting. We started with the lemongrass jingha, essentially a giant prawn marinated in garlic, honey and an assortment of Indian spices; it makes for one of the most delicious mouthfuls I’ve had in an Indian restaurant here and is a tribute to the fresh, organic-only ingredients used. Turf followed surf with the koriander pudina lamb, beautifully cooked to tender perfection. Said to contain Karim’s kryddblandning, (which had the unfortunate effect of making him sound like an Indian Colonel Sanders), his secret blend of herbs and spices included fresh mint, ginger and coriander. Rack of lamb at the right level of heat with the right amount of sauce (textured, not creamy slop) is difficult to find in Stockholm.
Fussy diners might argue that the mushrooms were a bit of a jarring note and that the samosa-shaped portion of rice was on the stingy side, but altogether it worked a mouthwatering treat. Much better than the oddly named ‘Gardens Moonlight Shadow’, an Indian version of stuffed peppers with stringy cheese on top and vegetables, fruit and homemade paneer on the side. According to the chef, the focus of this new restaurant is to be on vegetarian options, but my experience put me firmly in the carnivores camp.
Both veggies and meat-eaters alike could revel in the dessert though. Gulab Jamun, a dense, rosewater-scented, syrup-laden dumpling, is often eaten at festivals and parties and these were something to celebrate in themselves, especially when served with homemade pistachio ice-cream. It didn’t really need the blackberry, blueberries and redcurrants sprinkled over it, but one felt the homage to Swedish summer whilst indulging in the most Indian of treats.
Altogether, the little sister holds her own. With new restaurants opening and closing in the area before you can say ‘chicken tikka masala’, I think she’ll still be standing for years to come and become the grand old lady of them all.
Other activities in the area?
Northwest Kungsholmen used to be dismissed as so much office space, but with the arrival of new residents flocking to the sorely-needed housing development there; the area has become a magnet for new, innovative restaurant concepts, as well as attracting inner-city shoppers to the 13,000 m2 of retail space at Lindhagens Centrum. Of course, in Stockholm, you are never far from the water, but the ability to walk 500m in any direction and see sailing boats in the distance make the area particularly attractive for an evening stroll after a romantic meal. A nice place to visit (and I DO want to live there)
Tip when eating Indian food in Stockholm:
‘Be brave and always go for the spiciest option that you think you can take. Chilis add more than just heat; they lend a flavour to the dish that can’t be substituted. Plus they’re good for you!’
Where: Franzéngatan 50, 112 16 Stockholm (T-bana: Stadshagen)
Contact: 08-684 494 90 or the website.
Starters: 39 – 89 SEK
Mains: 179 – 269 SEK
Desserts: 30 – 79 SEK
Wines: 89 SEK per glass and 310-545 SEK per bottle
Beer: up to 85 SEK 66cl