100 Very Best Restaurants 2015: No. 37 The Bombay Club


The samundari thali platter at Bombay Club. Photograph by Scott Suchman

Loungey piano trills give Ashok Bajaj’s sophisticated Indian restaurant a supper-club vibe. But even without the tunes, the striped silk banquettes and mahogany furniture evoke the era of the British raj.

Despite the retro feel, chef Nilesh Singhvi’s kitchen is forward-looking. The spinach chaat of the past has morphed into a crispy kale version that may be even better than the original. Crab masala with lovely lumps of gently spiced seafood complements the crunch of the kale so exquisitely that it should be a required pairing. Cocktails and wines are taken seriously—the martinis are as stiff as you’ll find at any piano bar.

Don’t miss:

  • Fava-bean-and-pea samosa
  • Tandoori trout
  • Duck kebabs
  • Mango shrimp
  • Khubani duck with apricots
  • Brussels sprouts with ginger
  • Truffled naan
  • Chocolate sticky-toffee pudding

Try Proof’s Chef Recipes

Shrimp Malabar From Bombay Club’s Nilesh Singhvi

Ann Limpert
Executive Food Editor/Critic

Ann Limpert joined Washingtonian in late 2003. She was previously an editorial assistant at Entertainment Weekly and a cook in New York restaurant kitchens, and she is a graduate of the Institute of Culinary Education. She lives in Petworth.

Food Editor

Anna Spiegel covers the dining and drinking scene in her native DC. Prior to joining Washingtonian in 2010, she attended the French Culinary Institute and Columbia University’s MFA program in New York, and held various cooking and writing positions in NYC and in St. John, US Virgin Islands.