Tag Archives: uk

Tayyab’s – 04.01.09

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Tayyab’s Kebab House
89 Fieldgate Street
Whitechapel
London, E1 1JU
http://www.tayyabs.co.uk

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Killa Kebabs! Chicken tikka, mutton tikka (lamb), lamb chops =]…

The best kebabs and curry on my tour of the UK.  This indian/pakistani place has casual dining with fantastic curries, breads, rice, and kebabs.  We came midweek around 7pm and waited in a queue for over an hour before we were seated.  Never have I seen a wait like this for Indian food.  It was well worth it.

The menu is somewhat brief but anything you order will be good.  As we hungrily drooled over the menu, sizzling plates of spicy kebabs hurriedly shuffled by in the very crowded restaurant.  We salivated as we inhaled the intoxicating odor of grilled kebabs only to reel and cough as the spices lit our sinuses up.  The snaking trail of kebabs to its final table was often accompanied coughs and choking of nearby eaters “taking a hit” of the spicy aromas.

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naan-thing like the real thing
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Karahi gosht (lamb curry), daal karela, karahi chicken , karahi bindi (okra)

Having mistakenly thought I just ingested a whole chili pepper, the caramelized red onion garnish adds a intense sweetness to offset the power of the curry.  Curries were served and probably freshly prepared in the same rustic metal bowls.  Order any dish with lamb, fantastic.

If you’re in London and like curry and kebabs, you MUST eat here.  If you’re not in London, plan a pilgrimage.  It is easy to see why Tayyab ranks among the top asian eateries.  Good price for great food, attentive service, and packed at all times: all indications of a great restaurant.

Tips:
Reserve to avoid the insanely long queue.
Ordering the kebabs is a MUST for your carnivore and vegetarian friends.
Walk down nearby Brick lane for London’s version of curry mile.
Check out 99 club, hip lounge with drinks and live music.

bru
Kebab and Curry Connoisseur

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Dave and Mas chowing down on curry like only Brits can

The Golden Chicken BarbeQue Fish & Chips – 03.31.09

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The Golden Chicken BarbeQue Fish & Chips
Tavistock Street
Bedford, UK

Finally, a fish and chip place that isn’t too posh or too cheap.  Despite its strange name, Golden Chicken is a fish and chip joint that is simple and straightforward.  The cook was quite a character and you would be sure to find all kinds types of interesting folks loitering outside.

The portions of chips AND fish are huge and contain the perfect amount of grease.  The cod was fresh and cooked very well.  Make sure to add LOTS of malt vinegar to the chips, the vinegar they use is weak and most of the flavor will evaporate quickly.

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Idiot proof labels: Mine and Not Mine

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Golden greasy goodness

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Nice batter and moist flake

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Saving the best for last

bru

Rock & Sole – 03.29.09

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Rock & Sole
45-47 Endell Street
London

Rock and Sole is your premium fish and chip eatery.  Great location in the hip neighborhood of Covent Garden means great quality fish and chips fried in 100% nut oil (as they put it).  Just a 2 minute walk from the tube station, eat here to rock your world and invigorate your soul.

A lazy Sunday evening and not a table was open in the cramped upstairs.  A good sign.  There was still plenty of seating downstairs.  A quick skip through the kitchen (yes, the only way to the downstairs reminiscent of Mama’s food shop in Alphabet city)  and down the stairs, we were whisked away to another world.  Aquarium painted walls and the hum of refrigerators really made you feel as if you were in a fish tank; deliberate effect or not, I liked.  Also comforting was the scent of humid ocean, which was probably wafting from the fish stored also in the downstairs.

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Cod, Haddock, Sole, plaice, scampi (aka shrimp) filets come in regular or large.  The regular filet with chips was more than enough food especially when paired with a cold brew.

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The fish had a crunchy batter and was cooked to perfection.  The filet flaked in large chunks and was very fresh.  The chips were cooked as proper english chips and not fries:  thick cut with golden outside, a slight limp, and mush interior.  Just add a dash of salt and as much malt vinegar as you can handle.  The white sauce on the table was a pleasant surprise.  It wasn’t tartar sauce but tzatziki and a very good one at that.  Cool and smooth with loads of dill and garlic, the sauce tasted great on everything.  Wash it all down with a cold lager Budvar (Czech Budweiser) or Efes (Turkish) and you have an international meal that somehow works.  Talk about world peace.

The waiters were not that helpful and didn’t know much.  They had Eastern European accents but the Germans couldn’t get better service either.  The manager (Greek or Turkish) did stop by to the table next to us and he seemed very friendly and knowledgeable.  The service and prices won’t bring me back but the quality of the fish and chips definitely will.

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bru
born again malt vinegar believer

King Kebab – 03.27.09

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King Kebab
59 Tavistock St
Bedford, MK40 UK

Greasy spoon?  Check.
Indian take-away?  Check.
Late night hungry visitors from abroad?  Double check.

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Like the Exxon Valdez oil spill, but worse

Worst.  Indian.  Ever.  OMG this food was bad.  So bad that it was good in a strange way.  Great food to laugh at how horrid it was.  It was a miracle we didn’t get sick.

We couldn’t tell if our order was chicken bhuna or jalfrezi.  =O Shocking I know.   Saag paneer was the worst saag I have ever had and I had to come all the way to UK for it.  It should be renamed saag cheddar.

Check out other places on Tavistock Road before eating here.

bru
Korean Kebab King

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Bad curry…and lots of it.

Shere Khan – 03.24.09

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Shere Khan
50-52 Wilmslow Rd
Manchester, M14 5TQ

Curry Mile, Manchester.  I wish there were more places like this in the states: a concentrated area of all things asian and I’m not talking about Chinese or Korean.  Indian, Pakistani, Afghan, Turkish; all vying for your business and patronage.  Back -alley take-away shops to polished trendy dining, they have it all.  Shere Khan has bright colors, clean lines, and bright lighting.  Definitely not a traditional Indian place.  While it is well known that UK is the birthplace of chicken tikka masala, this was not the place to try it.  I’ll be looking out for the greasy spoon take-away at 4pm for the most authentic experience.

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Excellent poppadums and chutneys

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The Chicken Jalfrezi and Karahi Chicken were excellent.  You taste all the spices and herbs used in the freshly prepared dishes.  Chicken chunks were perfectly moist and tender.  No scary pool of mystery oil floating on the curry.  We  kicked it up a notch by asking for green chilies on the side.  HOT and full of flava; just like what I look for in a woman.  Just kidding but not really.

Waiters were helpful and attentive.  Contemporary decor and hip style make it a great place to take your Afghan acquaintance, Desi date or throw a Pakistani party.    Great Indian food in England with German friends Alex and Sven.  Namaste.

Hin-bru

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Janam Fast Food 03.23.09

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Janam
78 Portland Street
Manchester M1 4QX
United Kingdom

The UK has more curry greasy spoons than NYC has sushi joints.  It’s no wonder, there are a lot of south asians here.  More often than not, patrons stumble into these places under the influence of something and craving salty grease.  Janam is a perfect example of just such a late night fix in Manchester.

The chicken kebab was minced chicken but it barely resembled food.  The large naan wrapping looked great but was stale like a flat tire.  Stuffed with some pieces of mystery chicken and loads of salad (aka cole slaw), the only memorable thing about the meal was the chili sauce.  Yowza, it was H-O-T.  I guess Manchester folks like their hot sauce atomic.

I barely finished my sandwich with my mouth and stomach on fire.  Dave gave up two-thirds done.  We should have suffered Ghandi’s revenge but were mercifully spared his wrath for yet another day.

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David, Eatclub Director of Marketing

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