It was ten years ago that the wonderful Cinnamon Club restaurant in Westminster first opened its doors. A few things have changed since then, but chef Vivek Singh is still very much the heartbeat of the place and the restaurant continues to serve some of the very best and most innovative Indian cuisine in the UK, one which combines the very best of Indian food but doesn’t ignore Western tastes and sensibilities. In 2003, along with the restaurant’s founder, Iqbal Wahhab, Vivek wrote The Cinnamon Club Cookbook and a special leather-bound edition of this beautiful book is now available, exclusively from the restaurant, to celebrate its ten years. In 2006, he wrote The Cinnamon Club Seafood Cookbook, and in 2008 came Curry: Classic and Contemporary. By this time Vivek was not only an award-winning author, but also one of the most respected chefs in the UK, and one of the most recognisable faces of Indian cuisine on TV too. 2008 was also the year that a second restaurant, Cinnamon Kitchen, just off Liverpool Street in London, also opened its doors.
It was great, therefore, to see two articles featuring Vivek in this weekend’s press. The Times included a collection of fine recipes from Vivek to celebrate 10 years of the Cinnamon Club, and show just how very versatile Indian cuisine – in his hands – can be. And then, in Sunday’s Observer Food Monthly magazine, an article from Allan Jenkins following Vivek back home and a ‘food lover’s journey’ across northern India taking in a street curry masterclass and a spice shopping trip and again revealing some of the very best Indian recipes you could hope for.
Here’s wishing Vivek and the Cinnamon Club many more years. If you haven’t already taken a look at his books, do check the links above and read on: there’s much indeed to enjoy.