Embossed wallpaper, glitters, Bollywood, color explosions, fake candles.. I admit, I’m a big fan of the typical tacky Indian restaurants, as long as they serve good food.
On the contrary there’s Babu Ji in St. Kilda. It’s the first white walled Indian restaurant I ever visited. The interior is clean, simple and stylish but the hospitable staff, a few shiny details, hand-painted Hindi phrases and amazing photos on the walls made sure the Indian heritage was very well represented. The lack of color in the interior was compensated by the color-bomb-dishes which were just as tasteful as they were colorful. The tandoori charred Macedon Ranges lamb chops combined with raita were favorite but the mustard seed and coconut fish curry really made me want to lick the bowl. Okay, maybe I did..
So, forget everything you think you know about Indian restaurants. Babu Ji is modern with a sense of fun and serves the kind of feel-good food I’m always in the mood for.
The George Building
4–6 Grey Street
St Kilda, Melbourne
Chef Jessi and his wife Jennifer also run the populair Indian restaurant Horn Please in Fitzroy North which I hope to visit when I get back to Melbourne again!