Dig into flavourful, spice-filled cuisine from the Northern and Southern regions of India

From Southern staples like dosa and sambar, to tikka naan that hail from the North, Indian cuisine contributes a significant part to the vibrant flavour in Singapore’a melting pot. Whether you turn to Indian fare to satiate your late-night supper hunts, to expand your tastebuds, or simply to seek comfort in a familiar atmosphere, this particular cuisine is deeply embedded in the everyday lives of those who call Singapore home. 

Although you and the squad might already have a go-to neighbourhood stall, it never hurts to explore your options. Be it upscaled outfits or cosy stalls, here’s a lineup of the top Indian restaurants to patronise on your next night off.

See also: New Restaurant Alert: Firangi Superstar’s Colonial Take on Traditional Indian Food

1. Tiffin Room

Located in the Grand Lobby of Raffles Singapore is a breathtaking remnant of the hotel’s rich history. Mirroring the stunning architecture that adorns the rest of the heritage site, Tiffin Room’s reinstated wooden floorboards and elegantly carved arches are its pride and joy, dating all the way back to the early 1900s. In this sacred space, the acclaimed kitchen offers up delectable North Indian cuisine for lunch and dinner, accentuated by freshly ground spices and an interactive dining experience with table-side service by chef Kuldeep Negi.

Dishes from the bygone era of the Maharajas include appetisers such as Jhinga Kebab, tiger prawn kebabs tastefully coated in cardamom, Indian spices and mango salsa for a piquant hint. Follow this up with one of the substantial main courses featuring Tiffin Crab Masala, soft shell crab curry cooked with bay leaf and black cardamom for that trademark flavour, or a plate of Murgh Makhani, a corn-fed boneless chicken leg doused in aromatic tomato and cashew nut gravy.

Inclusive of all diets, Tiffin Room offers some of the best Indian vegetarian options. Highlights include Bhutte Kabab, sweet corn patties peppered with chilli flakes and spices, and Paneer Angara Tikka, a unique blend of Indian cottage cheese, red chilli paste and assorted spices. Book here.

Tatler Tip: To savour the ultimate experience in a single seating, get a taste of everything by asking for the Thali Experience, a flavourful curation of signature Tiffin Room highlights served on a classic silver plate.

Tiffin Room
$ $   |  

1 Beach Road, Raffles Hotel Singapore, S(189673)

2. Punjab Grill

Incorporating the splendour of India’s Maharajas into chic and contemporary take on Indian royalty, Punjab Grill is the definition of class. Lounging amidst a setting of high-polish metal, upholstered panelling and plush armchairs, you will be transported into a movie-like scene of high society. With a private dining area that offers a spectacular kitchen view where one can witness the talented chefs in action, this is Indian cuisine elevated to its finest.

The menu itself is, too, a marvel. Drawing inspiration from the gourmet metropolises of the Punjab region, Punjab Grill fare includes reimagined traditional recipes and entirely new dishes like thedahi ke kebab, tandoori guchchi, kurkuri, salmon tikka and more. First-timers head towards the set menu for a complete Punjab experience. This kicks off your meal with a delectable appetiser like truffle malai chicken tikka, a traditional favourite served with a truffle twist. The main course heralds braised lamb shank, slow cooked to perfection with rosemary and garlic and paired with a special lucknawi gravy. Book here.

Tatler Tip: A prime location to host an important business meeting, the Exclusive Set Lunch Special impresses with a lavish 5-course meal, catering to both vegetarian and non-vegetarian diets (available on weekdays from 11.30 am to 2.15pm).

Punjab Grill
$ $   |  

2 Bayfront Avenue, B1-01A, The Shoppes at Marina Bay Sands, S(018972)

3. Rang Mahal

Raising the bar on fine Indian cuisine dining is Rang Mahal, one of Singapore’s oldest fine dining establishments. Founded in 1971, its age certainly translates into an unparalleled quality, maintaining a consistent rank as one of the island’s best Indian eateries. Clad in regal gold and red hues, the luxurious interior of the restaurants houses a wide spread of authentic flavours from all the regions of India, using freshly sourced ingredients paired with culinary finesse to entice worldwide gourmands.

Share this extraordinary fare with your loved ones by indulging in gourmet set lunches that feature a scrumptious soup of the day, followed swiftly by a hearty main, with choices ranging from deliciously dense papad & chutneys and Old Delhi butter chicken, to the fresh ash tandoor seabass and vibrant kurkuri vegetables. All these are paired with green peas pulao and a choice of bread, and topped off with a mysterious dessert of the day that leaves you hungry for more. Book here.

Tatler Tip: A more intimate dining affair can be obtained with the Private Dining experience. Host a cosy business lunch or luxurious celebration at the Rang Mahal private room, inclusive of personalised menus and complementary wines.

See also: Former Song of India Chef Manjunath Mural Starts a New Chapter With His Restaurant, Adda

Rang Mahal
$ $

7 Raffles Boulevard, Level 3, Pan Pacific Singapore, Singapore 039595

4. Thevar

Thevar is well-known in culinary circles for tantalising palates with a modern Indian twist. A homely Indian restaurant and bar situated along the vibrant Keong Saik Street, the establishment is run by chef Mano Thevar, who proudly showcases a myriad of innovative combinations, taking traditional Indian flavours and giving them a modern makeover. Offering a distinctive menu curated from Chef Mano's culinary training and travels, the food at Thevar is nostalgic and represents Indian flavours by way of the Malay Peninsula.

A seafood fusion serves up alluring dishes like Irish oyster pakora, a reinvented oyster fest cooked with traditional Irish influences, as well as the Argentinian prawn kachori, which grants prawn lovers with a delightful treat right from the shores of South America. Vegetarians may opt for the wholesome zucchini pakora and vindaloo young jackfruit roti, which offers refreshing spins on the beloved fruit and vegetable groups. Book here.

Tatler Tip: Apart from the exquisite bites at the restaurant, the Thevar bar delivers a list of Asian-inspired cocktails. Keep an eye out for the gin-based Ginger Desire with housemade ginger beer and passionfruit—a refreshing cool-down perfect for Singapore’s weather.

Thevar
$ $ $

9 Keong Saik Road, Singapore, 089117

5. Tandoor

Singapore’s highly regarded Indian restaurant takes diners on a flavourful journey through the land of Northern India. Paying homage to the motherland’s rich culinary heritage, the menu at Tandoor is wonderfully saturated with North Indian bites. An open kitchen concept set amidst a gorgeous beige-themed interior allows one to gaze upon the unique cooking techniques of Tandoor chefs, while feasting upon a gourmet spread of classic recipes and time-honoured methods.

Peruse the sumptuous meat array here, featuring murgh tikka, sizeable cubes of chicken richly marinated with red chilli, yoghurt and home pounded spices, and nimbu murgh tikka, morsels of chicken delicately flavoured with lemongrass, kaffir lime and jalapenos. For a more vegetarian-friendly diet, search for paneer mattar ka tikka, cottage cheese slices stuffed with spiced green peas, Philadelphia cheese, roasted cumin and marinated with delicate French herbs, or aloo ki nazzakat, potato barrels stuffed with nuts, skilfully marinated and chargrilled. Book here.

Tatler Tip: For a truly immersive dine-in, pay close attention to subtleties of the interior. Indian motifs, back-lit wall panels featuring Jaali and inlay mirrors reflect the traditional form of Indian architecture, enriching your feast of authentic cuisine.

See also: Meet the New Culinary Trailblazers: Fernando Arévalo, Keirin Buck and Manogren Thevar

Tandoor
$ $

11 Cavenagh Road Holiday Inn Singapore, Basement 1 Orchard City Centre, Singapore 229616

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