Jalan Kemang Raya No. 78B
Tel: 719 2677
Kinara tries hard not to be just another gaudy Indian palace and it has succeeded — thanks to the dramatic stairway that leads up to the dining room and the elegant booths set along the Haveli inner courtyard, along with the majestic Mughal aesthetics and the exquisite carpets. The comprehensive wine list delights as does the service, but we all know a restaurant does not run on heart alone.
The mostly North Indian menu tantalizes with its range, but not always, sadly, its quality — at least not on the night of my visit. And so, equally disappointing are a dish of eggplant, mashed potatoes and onions baked on a low flame and cooked with spices (bhuna baingab bharta), a dish of spicy diced snapper flavoured with lemon, masala and mustard seeds and a dish of green peas and mushroom in creamy sauce (dhingri matar), all of which embody insipid quality and a lack of definition.
Better are the mint-scented crunchy cauliflower tandoor (tandoori gobhi) and a dish of spring lamb braised in a marinade of black cumin and dark rum finished in a tandoor known as Sikandari raan. Of the appetizers, the mushroom kurkuri—which is fried cigarillos stuffed with mushroom and cheese—is worth trying.
Price range: Around Rp 400,000 for 2 (with wine)
Dress code: smart casual
Atmosphere: royal hip Mughal
Alcohol: yes + a good wine list
All major credit cards accepted
Reviewed: August 2007