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Atul Kochhar: The ‘Master of Spices’ lights up Wembley with street food offering

Luxury & Lifestyle 02-11-2021

Wembley is known to host the biggest names in the world, and now, with the arrival of Atul Kochhar’s Masalchi, it has a twice Michelin-starred chef to add to the list.

The latest feather in Kochhar’s cap opened on 25th October, just in time for Diwali. Masalchi takes pride of place on Wembley Park Boulevard, at the foot of the famous stairs up to Wembley Stadium and directly opposite the SSE Arena.

The open-plan restaurant is bright and airy with capacity for 120 guests. It is surrounded by glass, allowing diners to take in the iconic surroundings. Despite being a large, open space, the restaurant feels warm and inviting with its clever use of earthy natural colours with hues of blues and browns, minimalist style, and overhead mood lighting.

Now here’s the clever bit. Thanks to its diverse Asian population, Wembley has always been home to countless authentic Indian restaurants at every end of the spectrum. Now, Masalchi arrives to join the party, with a menu based on Indian street food. But this is a completely different league, in a fabulous fashion that only Atul Kochhar can deliver. Described by Kochhar himself as “hearty yet simple,” the menu is playful…flirting with colourful and flavoursome classics with a twist. We chose the vegetarian menu, which can be adapted to offer vegan and / or no onion no garlic options, as well as a festive menu for Diwali.

After a welcome of papad and chutneys, we started with half plates, including the hearty Punjabi Samosa Cholle, Saag Aloo Pyazi and our favourite, the Chukundar Chaap— blood red beetroot and pine nuts croquettes with a crisp kachumber salad. For the mains, the Chennai coconut curry with al dente rainbow vegetables stole the show, along with the comforting Mah ki Dal.

To round it off, the Gulab Jamun – lovingly garnished with nuts and edible flowers – were a rich end to a hearty meal. My personal favourite, however, was the Tandoori Pineapple – gently browned, tangy fruit slices beautifully presented on a platter accompanied by a mild coconut sorbet and berries.

A thoroughly delightful experience from start to finish, I expect Masalchi will be a popular haven for diners in North West London. Kochhar has ‘come home’ with authentic cuisine at Masalchi, while pulling out something different—for himself, and for the area. An upmarket experience, sleek surroundings, and a culinary joy for all palates, boldly taking its place amongst Wembley’s pride and joy.

Masalchi is situated on the corner of Olympic Way at 2 Wembley Park Boulevard, Wembley Stadium, Wembley Park HA9 0HP Tel: 020 8634 8181.
Review by Nima Suchak

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