"I like to call it unauthentic Indian," owner-chef Jessi Singh says of his new Surry Hills restaurant.
Back in July we reported Singh had nabbed the site of Colin Fassnidge's 4Fourteen.
After a quick remodelling, Singh, who arrives in Sydney from Melbourne via New York (he's responsible for Melbourne's Horn Please and Babu Ji in NYC), opened the doors this week at Don't Tell Aunty.
If Singh's "unauthentic" quip sounds like the cuisine description equivalent of I Can't Believe It's Not Butter, there's reasoning behind it.
Singh doesn't use ghee in his curries, he has a dish on the menu described as Nachos of the Motherland, he whips up "pizza" in the tandoor using a naan base, there's sea urchin biryani and a cauliflower dish inspired by the cooking of Kolkata's Chinese community.
"The food is very colourful; colour is a big part of our dress and part of the culture in India," he explains. He's taken the same approach with the interior, keeping the bones of 4Fourteen but brightening up its colours.
The restaurant's soundtrack and its interior have a Bollywood feel. Singh might call Don't Tell Aunty an "unauthentic" Indian restaurant, but there's still a lot of India in it. It also has a $10 lunch option.
Open Tue-Sat lunch and dinner.
Don't Tell Aunty, 414 Bourke Street, Surry Hills, 02 9331 5399, don'ttellaunty.com.au.