Friday, November 2, 2012

Kati Roll vs. Mooli’s: Battle of the best Indian Wrap



London has two fabulous albeit tiny restaurants that do Indian Wraps a.k.a Kati Rolls – perfect for take-away food or if you want to grab a quick cheap meal.

Kati Roll is just off of Oxford Street, in between Oxford Circus and Tottenham Court Road. Their orange walls are plastered with old Hindi movie posters and classic 70’s Bollywood music plays in the background and you can order old-school mango soft drinks like Maaza. 

Buon Appetito The Kati Roll Company London

The wraps are made with fried flat bread called ‘paratha’ and you can even get a fried egg on top of it. It’s then stuffed with a meat filling like a chicken or lamb kebabs or a vegetable filling like paneer or potatoes, some tangy green chutney and red onions and everything comes together beautifully. I’m craving it just writing about it now.

Kati Roll

Mooli’s is a bit different. The fillings are more varied and seem a bit healthier. Well for one thing, there’s no fried egg in your roll. The wrap is lighter and stuffed not just with meat but other fillings that make it more interesting. For instance, they do a wrap with mutton which is a goat meat and it has pomegranate salsa which adds a crunchy slightly sweet, refreshing taste to it. Their chicken roll with pickled turnips is especially nice too.

If I’m wandering around Soho and want to grab a quick cheap lunch, I always end up in Mooli’s. I like how flexible their menu is – you can choose one gigantic large roll or if you’re like me and can’t decide, you can choose two small rolls with different fillings. And they even do a salad option – it’s an ideal lunch place if you work in Soho.

Mooli's Soho Buon Appetito
Mooli's Menu
Mooli's Soho Buon Appetito
Inside Mooli's





In the end, however my greedy little stomach would choose Kati Roll over Mooli’s – It’s tastier, definitely less healthy and perfectly satisfies any late night cravings you might have!

There’s also a nostalgic element associated with Kati Roll – back when I use to live in NYC, Kati Roll was the go-to place after a night out. In a tiny-hole in the wall shop on the corner of Bleeker St and McDougal St you would find a huge line snaking out of the store even at 4am.  In a city of so many choices – it was still the only place to go to, if you were craving a spicy Indian, meat-filled, egg-fried roll.

I’ve had friends visiting New York only for a weekend, who insisted on taking back a Kati Roll back with them to Boston – a 4 hour drive away. I’ve even had a friend faint in Kati Roll New York – she insisted on queuing for half an hour despite my protests and when we were finally in the shop at around 3:30 in the morning, she turns to me and says “you know what I’m feeling a bit sick, let’s go home”. And I ruthlessly told her no – she made me queue for so long and now we were so close to getting food – there was no way I was quitting this line.

A few seconds later, she dramatically swooned and fainted over a table full of people. It was quite a scene given that in the process of trying to catch her, I knocked a few bottle of orange Maaza over another girl’s lovely white dress.  I have never let my poor friend forget the incident and after that day, I believe Kati Roll put in a bouncer outside the door to deal with the late night crowds!

So you can see why I have a certain fondness for Kati Roll ;)


The Kati Roll Company

24 Poland Street London W1F 8QL
Tel: 0207 287 4787      
Tube: Oxford Circus/Tottenham Court Road    


Kati Roll company on Urbanspoon

Mooli’s

50 Frith Street  London, Soho W1D 4SQ
Tel: 020 7494 9075
Tube: Picadilly Circus


Mooli's on Urbanspoon

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