Feeling lazy and definitely not in the mood to cook after all having long weeks of work, tutorials and rehearsals, myself and my two housemates decided that the logical thing to do would be to treat ourselves to a curry. We came to this realisation quite late in the evening, and thought we had better try to book a table rather than just wander in. We were pleased to find that Malikas’s website makes it incredibly easy to book, even at very short notice, and to view their menu beforehand if you have any special dietary requirements.
When we arrived, the restaurant was relatively empty (we turned up at about 9.30pm) and the customers already seated looked to be in full swing of their meals. Despite this, we didn’t feel like we were being rushed through our meal at all, and were warmly welcomed by the front of house staff. Malikas’s décor is modern, smart and clean, and while it doesn’t come with buckets of character, our table and all our food was presented impeccably. The service was good, if a little bit slow, and we were made to feel relaxed – the swift provision of a bottle of the house red and papadums certainly helped to keep us going while we decided what to order.
Being a recent convert to vegetarianism, I couldn’t default to my old usual of a Chicken Tikka Masala or Chicken Madras, and instead had to take a good look at the vegetarian specialities section. Pleasingly, there was plenty to choose from; the Sarso Baigon (aubergines fried in spices and mustard seeds) and the Mottor Baigon (chick-peas and aubergines) were strong contenders but I ended up opting for the Chana Dansak, a sweet and sour mix of chick-peas and lentils. This was one of the best curries I’ve had in a long time, just hot enough without being overpowering, and extremely flavourful. I’d recommend it to meat-eaters and vegetarians/vegans alike!
The others ordered a Lamb Rogan, a medium-hot dish cooked with fenugreek, and a classic Prawn Korma; we also got some pilau rice, peshwari naans and onion bhajis to share. The portion sizes were generous and we probably slightly over-ordered on the sides, but powered through as best we could, all us of very full and very satisfied with our choices by the end of the meal. All in all, we had a really enjoyable evening at Malikas, the food is excellent and well priced, and the staff are very hospitable (they let you stay until midnight to finish a second bottle of the house red…) It’s everything you could want for a Friday night treat!