Thava Indian Restaurant (Norwood)

Cost
R125 avg main meal
Ambience
Authentic culture, Classic elegance
Food
Indian
Payment
Amex, Mastercard, Visa
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Critic's review

Food 
The menu is extensive, with a great variety of dishes from which to choose. The cuisine leans more in the direction of South Indian cuisine, but they cater for a vast majority, so whether you're an entry level diner or a curry connoisseur, there will be something on the menu for you.

Try vegetable patties, a combination of coriander, sesame, coconut, peanut and chilli stuffed inside potato and deep-fried; or for something interactive and fun, a traditional South Indian dosa to start. The curry menu is wonderful and many of them come in tapas portions, which is great if you’d like to sample a selection.

The iconic Thava lamb chop masala is a clear winner and is served in a large dish to share. The flavour profile of this dish with its subtle hints of garam masala, cinnamon, cardamom and cloves is excellent – it's by far the best dish we try. Other dishes to sample include the chicken korma, paneer makhani or vegetable biryani. Thava also has a great selection of authentic Indian flat breads and accompaniments to choose from as well as a tandoor oven (although the tandoori lamb boti kebab took a long time to prepare and was a little disappointing).

The large number of Indian patrons bears testimony to the standard of the cuisine.

Drinks 
There's a decidedly average wine list, though it's reasonably priced. You won’t find anything special here, but one of the upsides is that the list contains some food pairing notes, so that’s helpful if you are unsure about what to order with your curry.

Service 
Service started off brilliantly with the taking of the booking, and staff members are welcoming on reception. They’re also well informed about the vast menu and helpful with recommendations. There is work to be done here, though – once the restaurant begins to fill up, the wheels start to come off, with the manager disappearing from the floor and staff being hard to find after the main orders have been delivered.

Ambience 
The large dining area is handled well by the staff, who know to seat arriving patrons together in order to create a buzzing atmosphere. The diverse mix of patrons creates a unique and interesting energy. As for the décor, the interior could do with some TLC.

And…
The waiters really know their stuff – stick to their recommendations and you’re assured of a great meal.

(August 2014)

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  • Mostly South Indian dishes. Order lamb chops in a garam marsala mix of cinnamon, cardamom and cloves; paneer tikka with green chutney; or bhuna gosht, a superb curry of lamb, onion and coconut powder. A favourite with Indian groups – proof of its quality and authenticity. (EO mag 2014)
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  • Food
    The food at Thava comes from South India, with many dishes from the owner’s native region of Kerala. However, what makes it different from the average Indian eatery is that most items on the menu can be served as tapas and are ideal for sharing and savouring. The food is excellent, so if you opt for the tapas portions you can try more. It is hard to pick a favourite, but try puri paratha (floured and rolled-up yam leaves on a bed of puri), the lamb rogan josh, or their delectable signature dish, chicken kasturi curry. Leave space for dessert!

    Wine
    A small and compact wine list.

    Service
    Friendly, with helpful and knowledgeable staff who make good recommendations.

    Ambience
    There’s a welcoming vibe, including the tapas bar with high chairs upholstered in red.

    And...
    You can watch Indian flatbreads and dishes being prepared in the tandoori oven, thanks to the glassed-in kitchen. (Janine Walker, March 2012)
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User reviews

  • Hubby is vegetarian and when we visited there,we were referred to this awesome restaurant by a friend. Hubby had the veg Biryani and I ate the lamb.We are from dbn and didn't expect much but were pleasantly surprised, delicious meals and great service.Thank you
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  • Had a business meeting in Norwood and decided to takle my clients to Thava. As usual the food was full of flavour and authentic. Started with some Chilli chicken hot but not burning. We followed that with 4 tapas portion of various dishes, Kasturi chicken, Lamb Vindaloo, Dingri Matha and some Dal. The rice was light and fluffy and we can only recommend the Kerala Paratha exclusive to Thava. The service was attentive and the waiters knowleageable definetely a place to remember
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  • Fantastic Service! Excellent Food! I have been to Thava in Norwood a number of times and they impress every time!
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  • Great tasting food. Great Service. Ambience was a bit noisy. Great value.

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  • Probably the best Indian in Jozi! Thoroughly impressed by everything on offer.

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  • Authentic South Indian curries and a fantastic range of sides and starters. The veg patties are excellent as are the seasme crumbed prawns. Best curry in Joburg in my opinion.

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  • On the few occasions we have been there, we've enjoyed it. The atmosphere is great, however, sometimes it's difficult to get the waiter's attention. I suppose a symptom of a busy restaurant. The quality of the food is good, with an abundance of choice. However, the chef does seem to enjoy cooking with copious amounts of butter. This may be of concern for the health conscious among us.

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  • This is known as the India in South Africa. What a service...I felt like I was in India. Friendly service, very advisable manager. His suggestions are the best... thank you for the lovely meal on Mother's Day. We will be back.

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  • I am an absolute lover of Indian food and after moving to South Africa from the UK five years ago I have suffered a uncountable amount of disappointments with regards to "Indian food". Whilst looking for a nice Indian restaurant for which I could take my girlfriend for our four year anniversary I came across Thava on the Eat Out website. I can honestly say this rates as the best Indian restaurant in South Africa, the service was quick and very helpful, the food was so delicious even now my mouth is watering at the thought of it.
    Anybody who is thinking of going for a curry don't look any further.

    Thank-you Thava for the wonderful dining experience - you've restored some hope in me that I can find my favourite dishes here in South Africa and I'm not subjected to mediocre curries for the rest of my time in here.

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  • Great discovery, marsala dosa delicious.

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  • Being a fan of Indian food I've been to most Indian restaurants in Gauteng, but this has got to be my favourite. Delicious, very flavourful food, with a masterful use of spices, with great service and a very relaxed atmosphere.

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  • Consistently excellent food. Service is always good and staff are very acommodating.

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  • This was a great dining experience. My wife and I love North Indian cuisine and this rates as some of the best we have eaten in South Africa. Staff were well versed in all aspects of the menu and super friendly.

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  • Excellent sercvice, good food, a bit pricey compared to other Indian restaurants though!

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  • Consistently excellent food. Great variety of options. Love it!

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  • If you are looking for beautifully flavoured food cooked to perfection, this is a winner every time. Consistently good. Great Service too.

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Facilities

  • Accepts credit cards
  • Child friendly
  • Cocktails
  • Dress code
  • Functions
  • Licensed
  • Parking
  • Takeaways
  • Wheelchair
  • WiFi

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