a gimmicky, very-expensive indian restaurant in little india – not the traditional indian foodery as you’d expect in this neighborhood. it seems catered toward tourists, tripadvisor (on which it has a fantastic rating) and unknowing diners a like – the gimmick of barefoot dining and variable heat levels (and of course that means there’s a barely-human level up there) saying possibly everything you need to know.
and of course, it could be not a gimmick, but a preference for no-shoes and a care for customers’ varying heat requirements. but I’m just saying – coupled with the high prices and the small portions of supposed-to-be-cheap food, I’m more likely to put this off as a tourist trap than anything else.
but I’m cynical (that’s why you like me, right).
there wasn’t space in the barefoot lounge upstairs – so we sat outside, by pillars strewn by the random scribblings of airplane crews and tourists, with a glass of lassi each and crispy (but glistening with oil) poppadums in a basket. the lassis were thick and not too sweet – but it’s quite a small glass.
we started with some delicate chickpea fritters dotted with peas – I didn’t think they would be, but these browned small things had loosely-bound chickpea meal and bits of peas strewn throughout. pretty delicious.
for mains, we had a round of different curries and stew-like things of varying heat – and let me tell you that the third heat level pretty much packs a punch (I’m not sure how my heat tolerance compares to yours). I also can’t name all of what we were eating as they were just rather spicy, spice-y things that tasted decent (but how could it not, with that many aromatics) but a spicy chickpea curry had tender legumes and the raita was cool and delicious.
I don’t remember anything fantastic about the chicken tikka – and I think it pretty pricey, so I would stick to the curries. get some naan to go with too, as they were delicious (and so was my roti).
in any case, the food was decent. I have no qualms except that it was more expensive than expected (and warranted), and it may not be the sort of thing you expected in little india. decent otherwise, and maybe a good place for out-of-towners.
Lagnaa Barefoot Dining
6 Upper Dickson Rd
$$$: 35-50 a meal (which isn’t expensive per se, but I’m taking it within context of its neighborhood and the other options available)