Our Guide To The Perfect Drinks For Your Curry
The appeal of an Indian restaurant is of course the food, and as a premier establishment in Edinburgh we here at the Spice Lounge know that better than anyone! But the question of what drink to have alongside a curry always seems to be an afterthought. There is an endless amount of options in the drinks category, and a spur of the moment choice could even end up letting down your entire meal.
As a rule, drinking anything too heavy or complex with Indian curries is a mistake – the food has enough different spices and textures to keep your taste buds alight for the whole meal. But plain water can be a little mundane with an otherwise exciting meal. So here’s a selection of brilliant drinks we know will be the perfect thing to accompany your delicious meal.
First, a non-alcoholic alternative: a yoghurt-based drink that is often blended with water, spices and sometimes fruit (traditional Lassi is a savoury drink sometimes flavoured with roasted cumin). This drink is great to accompany spicier curries, especially if you like the heat, but can’t take the pain!
A Fruity Rosé
The art of matching the perfect wine to a dish can be a hobby in itself. But, the aromatic spices in a curry can be an overpowering force when paired with wine; however if wine is your drink of choice then you can opt for a less spicy dish and pair it with a fruity rose. This is the perfect compromise for wine lovers! It has to be a strongly aromatic wine to battle the curry spices so think Spain, Portugal or South America to get that really fruity taste that works well with most mild curries.
The lower alcohol content of beer can make it a perfect accompaniment for most meals. With curry a lighter beer is preferable, Indian brands such as Kingfisher and Cobra are readily available and offer the refreshment that a spicier curry might require. Slightly sweet Belgian beers, such as Leffe, are also a perfect pair as the mix of savoury and sweet is a truly classic flavour combination.
There is a world of choice out there when it comes to cocktails. But to narrow it down, mango is a great flavour to pair with curries, mango flavoured Lassi’s are a popular flavour choice also, and so a mango-based cocktail would make a great accompaniment for any curry, mild to hot! Although, any fruity cocktail of your choice will no doubt mix well with the spiced aroma of a curry.
A mixed drink is a classic dinner accompaniment, although it is important to remember that spirits can be quite strong, and scotch and vodka are perennial favourites in India. Spirits are pure and less filling than other drinks such as beer, so with a curry and the various accompaniments, naan bread, popadoms, starters such as bhajis and pakoras, it might be the best idea to have a drink that won’t create too many leftovers.
Finding the right drink to pair with your favourite curries can be a trial and error experience, but it’s a great excuse to pop into our restaurant frequently to find the best fit! Here at the Spice Lounge we pride ourselves on the traditional Indian cuisine that we serve.