Buddha Republic

by James Glazebrook

We like Indian food, and we like it hot. We hail from the home of Curry Hell, allegedly the world’s hottest curry and free to anyone who can keep it down. (If you’ve ever seen the Newcastle episode of the cable TV show Booze Britain you might remember Grant describing it as “the most uncomfortable thing I’ve ever tasted in me life”, just before bringing it all back up.)

To say that our tastes aren’t catered for in Berlin would be a mahoosive understatement. The city is famously bad for Indian food, but you wouldn’t believe how bad until you’ve sampled it for itself. Wherever you go, everything tastes the same: bland, indistinct and barely identifiable. “What’s this supposed to be again? Do they pipe this sauce in from the currywurst place next door? And then water it down?”

Which is why we’ve been to Buddha Republic twice in less than a month. Coming from Bangalore (via Birmingham), owner Armand has brought with him authentic recipes and the art of cooking using a traditional tandoori oven. He also has interior design chops, having successfully achieved the Buddha Bar aesthetic he enthused about over complimentary mango shots. We’ll leave the gushing descriptions to EXBERLINER, who sensibly sampled the Maharaja mixed tandoori for two, and just say that the food stands up against anything we’ve tasted on Brick Lane or in Bradford. Well worth the trip out to Charlottenburg. Again and again and again…