Restaurant Reviews

Restauracja Mandala Review

We recently visited another of India Express venues on Sienna street in the center of Warsaw. You can read the India Express Breakfast Review here. We were pleased with the discovery we made there that we wanted to explore more what they had to offer. When we were told they had a larger venue that had a wider menu range we had to check it our. Here is our experience.

How to Find Restauracja Mandala

In all our reviews we use the Palace of Culture and Science as a point of reference as it is the tallest building in the city (and Poland!)

Normally we start with talking about the walking distance from the Palace of culture and science, but that is not possible to this location. If you’re looking for a more central location then you’ll be happy to know that India Express (Sienna 87) have a smaller venue less than 1km walking. This we are talking about today is located in an area that would require you to drive or take public transport. There are some free parking spaces on the street, but beware that this is a public street and could easily be full at busy times.

From the Centralny bus stop you could take the 504 bus which would take you directly to Restauracja Mandala. If you are new to the city of Warsaw we recommend checking out the free public transport app called Jakdojade. This will tell you where to enter the bus and remind you when to leave: Jakdojade Explained 

Here is a picture of the outside to make it easier to spot. There are two doors, which confused us at first glance, but we just entered at the higher level.

Price and Menu

We visited Restauracja Mandala in the day time and discovered they have some great set menu dish lunches for different days of the week. The day we visited was Wtorek (Tuesday). Everyday they have a different set dishes, but the price does not change.

Click to enlarge

Everyday there are always two options of a vegetarian or non-vegetarian. We ordered both:

Non-vegetarian option:

Ginger chicken: chicken,ginger,garlic,pepper,soya sauce, lemon
Aloo brokoli matar: potato, broccoli, peas, onion, tomato, garlic, ginger, coriander, cumin

Vegetarian option:

Rajma: Indian beans, tomato, garlic, ginger, coriander
Aloo brokoli matar: potato, broccoli, peas, onion, tomato, garlic, ginger, coriander, cumin

All lunches also come with a free Naan bread and rice.

We also order two Lemonades that were 12zł

Total bill: 63.98zł

Our normal expected bill in the center of Warsaw is 100zł. We believe that 63zł for two people is reasonable. Without the drinks the meal would have make to only 39.98zł which would make it one of the cheapest meals we have ever reviewed. You could say the drinks are slightly overpriced costing more than 50% the cost of than the food, but its a personal choice if you want a drink with your meal or not.

The place mat on the table also had some special offers too. Such as if you order 10 of the set menus then you’ll only pay 10zl per person. They also state that they are happy to deliver this anywhere within Warsaw, so that is something great to note if your office want to discover something new together. There are other offers too such as if you buy five set lunch menus you can get some free wine and if you spend over 90zl on anything else you can get free wine too! This is not something we see if many restaurants in Warsaw. It is appreciated.

Our Experience

In the above section we mentioned that the cost of the drinks were more than 50% of the food, but when we learnt about the sophisticated ingredients it started to make sense. The orange drink was an infusion of mango, saffron, melon, lemongrass, tangerine and juniper. The light green drink was melon, aloe, grapes and basil. These were a very unique match of flavors that we have yet to experience in Warsaw. If you enjoy discovering new things then give these a try. They were severed slightly chilled in a plastic bottle with a glass.

We visited here for the set lunch menu and we had already decided on this before arriving. It was nice to see that they change the set menu everyday, which makes it a good option if you work or live near by.

We wanted to try both options so I ordered the vegetation option and my guest ordered the meat option. After a wait of less than ten minutes both dishes were served. They looked very similar and are severed in the same manner on a large metal plate, four small metal bowls and Indian bread.

Both dishes (veggie and non-veggie) came with a small portion of boiled rice, a small salad and a Aloo brokoli matar.  Aloo brokoli matar is a vegan friendly dish of  potato, broccoli, peas, onion, tomato, garlic, ginger, coriander, and cumin. It was packed with Indian flavors and perfecting for dipping and scooping the bread in to.

The only difference between the two meals is the single bowl of either a meat dish or not. I went with the vegetation option and it was great! The extra bowl on my plate was called Rajma.  The consistency of the dish was like that of a gravy and the ingredients were Indian beans, tomato, garlic, ginger and coriander. It was packed with flavor, but was not hot or spicy like you might expect from the stereotype of Indian food.

The quality of the vegetables was clear too. They were crisp and fresh with a good crunch to them. The sauce only lightly covered them without taking away too much from their own flavors

My guests dish had the same rice, salad, bread and Aloo brokoli matar. Their meat option came with Ginger chicken which on the menu labelled itself as: chicken, ginger, garlic, pepper, soya sauce and lemon. It is a shame it only came in a small portion size because we were both fighting to finish it. It was jammed with interesting and eye opening tastes. The tang and sharpness of the lemon was balanced out by the darker tastes of the Soya and pepper. If they severed this in larger portions it is what I would order if I was returning for a dinner.

Both lunches came with the right amount of rice and bread for you to be satisfied until late into the night. We would have liked to have seen more meat in the chicken dish, but for the price of less than 20zl you can’t expect everything.

Service and Waiting time

We visited Restauracja Mandala midday so we can’t comment how it is on the weekend or other peaks hours. When we arrived we had our choice of many tables so there was no waiting time for a table. Our waiter brought us over a menu right away and from ordering to eating was less than ten minutes. We were pleased and impressed by the waiting time.

The service was great too! The menu was presented only in Polish, so the waiter was happy to explain the different dishes available in the set menu on that day. I also personally don’t have much exprience with Indian ingredients and we happily explained what was inside the dish, how it would look and taste but also the spice levels if it was hot/spicy or not.

Decor and atmosphere

Restauracja Mandala is really large! It has an upstairs were you enter and they also have a large downstairs space as well. The venue is very clean and tasteful decorated.

Some Indian restaurants go ‘over the top’ with the design and it can sometimes can across as cheap and tacky, but not with Indian express. Nice clean smooth walls, some interesting pieces of art and nice solid wood tables.

There was music in the background, but it wasn’t very noticeable. It didn’t impact having a conversation, but still has loud enough to create an atmosphere you’d expect from a restaurant.

Language Barriers

As a native English speaker that doesn’t speak Polish I sometimes struggle with restaurants in Warsaw that don’t have English speaking staff but that is not a problem with Restauracja Mandala. The only problem I came in contact with was the menu was only in Polish and there was no English option available. Thankfully the staff were happy to explain each dish and offer recommendations.

Final Impression and things to note

Overall, we had a great experience with Restauracja Mandala. The service was efficient, the venue was clean and the food was great value for money!

India express is not the the best location, however it does make up for it in size. If you were looking for a venue for a large party or company meal then then this would be perfect!. We are sure if the group was large enough you could reserve the whole downstairs which looked to be able to hold between 30-45 people.

Another cool thing to note is the special offers. As mentioned in the menu section they over these lunches at 10PLN per person if you order 10 of them. They deliver anywhere in Warsaw so this would be a great treat for the office or to share with friends.

Have you visited  India Express (Etiudy Rewolucyjnej 38)? Share your comments and experiences in the comment section below. 



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