The waiter was agreeably patient as we ate poppadoms and deliberated. For starters we finally chose Tom Yum Soup, a spicy Thai concoction with prawns and mushrooms, and Tandoor Mushroom, whole mushrooms coated in pink Tandooriness and served with salad. Both were excellent, with special mention going to the large and succulent prawns in the soup, and to the fact that the salad, often just decorative in such circumstances, was actually fresh and nice and not full of onion.
For mains we had Duck Ralsha, lean pieces served in a sauce of honey and tomatoes, and Navaratna Korma, no fewer than nine fruits and vegetables in a mild coconut sauce. We ordered pilau rice with both, and a side of Sag Aloo. The high standard was maintained, generous portions well-presented. The Korma sauce was subtle and not too creamy, and the Ralsha was likewise not too heavy or oily.
Reasonably full, we passed over the more luxurious deserts, (lemon brulé, chocolate mousse etc.) and decided to share a Pistachio Kulfi (Indian ice cream). We couldn’t quite decide how it differed from “normal” ice cream, but as with the rest, it couldn’t be faulted.
Just a further cup of tea and we were ready to stagger bloated into the night. The total cost for two people with drinks was just under £50. Starters and desserts were £3-£5, mains £6-£12 (without rice etc), and sides £2-£5. This is marginally more expensive than many of Oxford’s “Indian” restaurants, but with the consistently highly quality, attention to detail (even the poppadom condiments were noticeably above average), pleasant atmosphere, and relaxed and friendly service, it’s well worth it. Highly recommended.
P.S. Be aware of a £5 lunch offer available at the time of writing.