The Combustibles

Our research for Dishoom Carnaby took us down many unexpected avenues. We started to investigate the world of rock’n’roll Bombay in the ’60s and made lots of new friends. Nissim Ezekiel, of The Combustibles, is one such friend. While we were putting together the restaurant and the Slip-Disc LP, he kindly shared much memorabilia of the ‘groovy scene’ in Bombay in the 60s and has now been kind enough to share his blog from The Combustibles’ own website. 

Dishoom – London’s extremely popular and highly regarded chain of restaurants modeled on the fast-vanishing Irani cafes of Bombay – opened its newest location on Kingly Street in Carnaby on October 14, 2015. As its owners explain: “When we began thinking about Dishoom Carnaby, we came across a surprising relationship that flourished in the 60s, when Western influences kicked off a rocking music scene in Bombay. We were drawn in by this cul-de-sac of history and contacted Sidharth Bhatia, author of the book ‘India Psychedelic’ as well as many of the musicians of the time.” The Combustibles are proud to have been part of this project and thrilled to have a number of the band’s images appear on Dishoom Carnaby’s Wall of Fame as we call it!

Everett (and wife Valerie) and Lionel (with sister Ellen) attended the opening party for Dishoom Carnaby and thoroughly enjoyed being treated like celebrities again after a somewhat short hiatus of four decades or more! Enjoyed sharing the limelight with Reynold D’Silva – formerly with Brief Encounter in Bombay and now Founder/CEO of Silva Screen Records (London)

Ellen was always an integral part of The Combustibles experience in the good olde days – with a strong claim to have come up with the band’s name! Now, she’s again a part of the celebration in London.


Autograph time again??

Not having been in Bombay during the band’s heyday, Valerie now experiences Everett’s celebrity status in London!

For those of our fans and friends who get the opportunity please do visit Dishoom Carnaby, enjoy the incredible food and get some photos alongside some of The Combustibles images on the ‘Wall of Fame.’ Remember to send them to us at info@thecombustiblesband.com and we’ll put them on the site!

Read the café stories

Suggested Reading

See the journal

Dishoom Loves. Issue XIII.

With February comes a gladdening of spirits, lighter morning skies and discernibly louder birdsong. It is also the month to bid farewell to our winter cocoons (at least partially) and tune back into the world beyond our blankets. Allow us to ease the de-hibernation process, by sharing some of the things piquing our interest this month.

A Little Magic

“Who wants to see some magic?” Chef Arun calls out. He flings the rolled out dough into the air, sending it soaring above the counter. It spins and twists, a graceful dancer in the air. The children watch its arc, their eyes wide with wonder, until it lands gently back in the chef's hands. The children shriek in delight.

Dishoom Loves. Issue XII.

January is a most divisive month. For some it heralds the hopeful turning over of new leaves; for others it is a month to trudge begrudgingly through towards the promise of spring. Whichever camp you find yourself in, we have plentiful diversions to share. See them as the cherry atop your already gleeful January cake, or a welcome distraction while you await winter’s end.

Goodbye 2023. Hello 2024.

I AM HERE, dear reader, slovenly and slouched, staring into my drink at the end of the bar in our new restaurant in Battersea. My mind is still down and out, sifting around in the dregs of ’23 but of course it knows that I should really straighten my back, raise my chin and look squarely up into the cold new light of ’24. My drink – Choti’s Punch – clear and strong, sweet with a little salt, may help.