Atul Kochhar’s first venture with Tina English, another recognised innovator of London’s Indian dining scene, Kanishka aims to explore lesser known regions of Indian food, showcasing cuisine from the country’s more remote territories and borders.
Kochhar first hit the London spotlight upon winning a Michelin star at the acclaimed Tamarind of Mayfair in 2001. He left to open Benares in 2002, which was awarded its own Michelin star four years later.
Now a celebrated restaurateur, television personality and cookery book author, Kochhar attributes his success to his use of regional Indian flavours alongside the best British produce, a practice which he will develop further in his latest venture.
Kanishka will showcase the cuisine of territories previously unexplored by London’s restaurants, particularly the Seven Sister States in the most easternmost region of India.
Named after King Kanishka, an emperor of the Kushan dynasty in the second century, Kanishka is inspired by the ruler’s use of Buddhist values, including kindness, fairness, honesty, humbleness and a sense of equality.
These themes are explored through the interiors, designed by Fabled Studio with the aim of creating a nostalgic sense of ritual and tradition. Guests will be greeted by whimsical topiary elephants and an antique front door, whilst inside will feature verdant foliage against calming shades of blue and intricate beaded details.
Split across the ground and basement floors, the 127-cover space includes a bar, a terrace at the front, and an intimate, 12-cover garden room downstairs.
“Kanishka is a very exciting project for us – it’s a great opportunity to continue to showcase Indian flavours alongside quality British produce, but also introduce London’s diners to the unique flavours of territories previously unexplored by Indian cuisine in the UK,” comments Kochhar.