Speaking of Heston Blumenthal, this is apparently where he goes to hang out and eat the best Indian food around. So if it’s good enough for him…

Tucked away in a leafy Berkshire lane, it’s not exactly what you think of when you think of an Indian restaurant: Malik’s has ditched the traditional décor and gone for neutral, modern white tablecloths. Pop music and muzak, rather than Indian music of any description, assault your ears during your meal. However, don’t let any of this fool you: the restaurant has won several awards, including the award for Best Curry Restaurant in the South-East (repeatedly, but most recently in 2008).

There is an excellent assortment of vegetarian dishes, meat and fish dishes, as well as wines and side orders. I can’t remember exactly what was ordered, as we were in a party of more than 10 people and everything just got shared around, but I seem to recall some excellent vegetarian curries featuring chickpeas and a wide assortment of flavours in the meat dishes. Despite Malik’s modern exterior, the food is traditional to the bone, right down to the naan breads.

It’s therefore no surprise, then, that different branches are starting to open in the local area (at present, there are two other Malik’s in Marlow and Gerrard’s Cross). Service was extremely swift and speedy, with plenty of wines, beers and soft drinks available (although since the drinks menu is unavailable online, I can’t tell you if there was any Indian wine available or not – if there was, we didn’t order any). The restaurant is deceptively large, as is the menu, and staff worked efficiently and well.

So would I return? Sure. If you want high-quality Indian food, then this is definitely the place to go – and next time maybe I’ll even have enough room to sample their desserts.

Malik’s, High Street, Cookham, Berkshire SL6 9SF (01628 520085)

14 Oak End Way, Gerrards Cross, Buckinghamshire SL9 8BR (01753 880888)

101 High Street, Marlow, Buckinghamshire SL7 1AB (01628 482180)

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