Despite achieving “mind-blowing” culinary heights (“the definition of innovative Indian cuisine” as described in last year’s 2016 guide), Bhatia has seemingly struggled in recent times to attract the attention he deserves to his tucked-away Chelsea townhouse. The new launch it seems is his pitch to turn the spotlight his way.
The restaurant will offer only tasting menus of five or six courses plus canapés and desserts, with ingredients and flavours that marry eastern and western influences. Diners can choose between vegetarian and non-vegetarian options.
Bhatia arrived in London in 1993, and his VBL menus will reflect the fact that he has spent more than half his life in Britain, mixing street food remembered from his Mumbai childhood such as sago papad with western ingredients such as smoked salmon.
Bhatia now has 10 restaurants around the world including venues in Geneva, Saudi Arabia, Dubai and Mumbai, which he runs with his wife, Rashima, from the Chelsea “mothership”, where diners ring the doorbell to gain entry as if to a private residence.