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Restaurant Guide

Star Rating

* * * * * * * * * *

The Palm 

102 Palmerston Road,

London, E17 6PZ 

0208 520 7465

Restaurant closed

January 2011

The Palm has been on Palmerston Road for the best part of twenty years and according to sources has always been a good, consistent family-run restaurant. The heavy blinds that adorned the windows made the Palm slightly unapproachable and the menu in the window was unlit and just above head height (I'm 5'11'') which made it difficult to understand what was going on - generally. Maybe for these reasons I had personally never set foot in the Palm. But in the interests of E17 Food and Drink a team decided to take the plunge. 
It was between Christmas and New Year - we called to make sure they were open. ''Yes, sir'' was the reply. So, full of expectation, we headed off to Palmerston Road only to find that there was sign on the door... ''Closed''. The restaurant was full and we guessed that there was a private party going on - a breakdown in communication obviously, but odd and slightly annoying nonetheless.

When we returned about a month later it was obvious that there had been some changes. The heavy drapes had gone and the restaurant was lit with bright fluorescent tubes. We entered and quickly realised that the Palm had changed ownership (our first visit was their closing party - what timing!).

Not only was the interior very bright and, as mentioned in the review below, a bit shabby, it was also very quiet and with no background music this made us all feel a little self-conscious and we resorted to speaking in hushed tones - a bit like one does in a church. Service (no pun intended) was very laid-back, friendly, helpful and slow – but, hey, there was no hurry (yet), and I got the impression that the waiter was helping out in the kitchen. 

There were five of us and we did order far too much food which arrived in dribs and drabs. We chose a combination of samosas, curries (both meat and vegetable), rice and dhosa. The first dish to arrive was a devilled fish curry which was very nice but with nothing a accompany it we were in a quandary - eat it, or wait and let it get cold. We kind of did both.

When the dishes we ordered finally stopped coming the conclusion was that it was very good, flavoursome and freshly cooked South Indian food. If the ambience had been a bit more relaxing the timing of the food would have been less important. 
I urge you all to try the Palm and maybe one day they'll turn the lights down a bit, put some music on and get some more blinds!


March 2010



We visited this restaurant on a Wednesday evening after looking for something different and authentic. The decor, whilst a bit shabby gave the impression of an unpretentious family run restaurant. 
The waiter was very helpful and friendly, explaining the menu to us as a lot of the dishes are unfamiliar. 
We started with a lamb samosa and some 'deviled chicken' both of which were excellent - the devilled chicken being a fusion of Chinese stir fry with fresh curry leaves. Yum. We then had a masala dhosa, chicken biryani and dhal .All were lovely, but what struck us was the intense flavours and the freshness of everything. We are definitely going back.
We had a good chat with the owner and he said he has plans for redecorating the place and investing a bit in the restaurant as he has recently taken it over. We said thats great but keep up the quality of the food ! Marvellous.

Posted January 28th 2010



After moving further away we’d got out of the habit of visiting the Palm, until I happened to walk past recently, and picked up a simply gorgeous scent of Sri Lankan cooking
Our next dinner from the Palm had to be a takeaway.  The restaurant was much the same as before (decor could do with some accents of light and colour) but comfortable and pleasant.  It must have been there for around ten years now.  Not very busy on this occasion – undeservedly as we quickly found out.  The food was ready within a minute or two of the time agreed, and we weren’t disappointed.  Sri Lankan food seems lighter in oils than the ubiquitous Bengali cuisine, and emphasises seafood rather more.  We started with a Bonda and a Masalla Vadai, both rather indescribable but delicious.  The fried chicken is simply to die for.  We also had squid curry, pumpkin curry and drumstick curry – all made from top quality ingredients and dressed in exotic spicy sauces with accompanying garnishes in numerous little pots.  The base (starch) component we chose (as ever) was Pittu – a crumbly roll made from ground rice with a little coconut, with an intriguing texture, plus “String Hoppers”, something like a very fine vermicelli, again made from rice.  Both are substantial but somehow don’t produce the stodgy feeling I associate with “Indian” food.  We finished up with the Kesari dessert: like a nutty Turkish delight.  We were certainly delighted – we’d ordered wildly more than two of us could eat and the bill was £22.  We’ll be back.
Caution – Sri Lankan food can be astonishingly hot if ordered recklessly (as I once found out) so give the helpful staff every opportunity to get it right for you.


Posted 14th October 2009



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