From the moment one enters Rang Mahal, on the 26th floor of Rembrandt Hotel, it is clear that it has abandoned the fustier clichés of Indian restaurants, replaced instead by soaring ceilings, panoramic city views and an elegance that is all too uncommon. The name means ‘palace of colours’ and there is definitely a courtly air about it all, down to the traditional Indian band whose lilting music fills the air. Equally, while Indian cuisine routinely delivers powerful flavours, the refined, almost delicate food served at Rang Mahal is a rarity.
Among the appetisers, the papri chaat (B175) and Punjabi samosa (B190) are relatively straightforward but the well-judged lightness and the fact the doughiness is not overdone mean these bite-sized dishes whet the appetite.
Proceedings go up a notch when the kebabs come out. The tandoori prawn (B295 per piece; bottom, right) is smoked to perfection in Indian spices, while the murgh malai (B425) combines chicken and cream cheese for an extra kick. The house specialty, though, is the raan-e-khyber (B950 for half, B1595 for whole) – a leg of lamb marinated in rum, herbs and spices before being barbecued. It’s an impressive dish, rustic in appearance but perfectly executed, the chunks of lamb peeling effortlessly from the bone, sweet and smokey at the same time. If you can’t choose from these, you can also get the platter (B825 for regular, B1125 for large).
The curries are equally successful in delivering a heightened version of familiar dishes. The Goan fish curry (B495) combines a lightly sautéed fish seasoned with a fragrant mix of onions, garlic and spices, cooked in a sauce of tomatoes and coconut gravy, the flavours deftly balanced against each other. In the kashmiri rogan josh (B525, main image), the mutton is irresistibly tender, more casserole than curry, a spectacular rendition of one of the most familiar staples.
The desserts are worth waiting for. The gulab jamun (B195) is a cream cheese dumpling flavoured with cardamom, saffron and almonds – it sounds like an unusual combination but the blending of savoury and sweet is a winning formula. The kulfi falooda (B225) is saffron-flavoured ice cream – but even then it is a pleasantly eye-opening experience.
Book your reservation instantly with Chope, click below:
26F Rembrandt Hotel, 19 Sukhumvit Soi 18 | 02-261-7100
rembrandtbkk.com | 11.30am-2.30pm, 6.30pm-11pm