Monday 4 August 2008

New Tayyabs.

I am a bit wary of eating at Indian restaurants, primarily as in Glasgow they serve food that is a poor imitation of the real thing, modified for the western palate. I was interested then, to read about the rave reviews that New Tayyabs received from some people who seem to know what they are talking about. At this point I must of course point out that New Tayyabs is Pakistani and not Indian, in origin. It also seemed like the perfect foil for the fancy food of the night before and a suitable place to take a group of slightly boozy friends.
I had called ahead in the week to make a booking, something which is not always guaranteed to get you seated on time, and to enquire about the mythical lamb Raan. At that point our party numbered 9 which I thought was pretty big, but it would seem, not big enough. To get Raan you need 15 hungry meat eaters.. next time.

So after buying our wine and beer supply, Tayyabs being BYOB, we made our way down Brick Lane, which made us feel like we were in Tenerife with all the touts hassling us, to Fieldgate St, where we were met by the mother of all queues. To cut a long story short we waited an hour for our table, a wait made bearable only by the fact that I bought everyone emergency samosas to stop them dying of starvation half-way through. This gave us more than enough time to be taunted by the sizzling platters of meat and the wafts of spicy savoury goodness destined for mouths others than ours. I was reassured to see that Tayyabs was inhabited by a far more varied clientele than I have ever witnessed in an Asian restaurant in Glasgow, a fact which in part maybe explained by the truly cosmopolitan mature of London but also due to the authentic nature of the food we were about to eat. I should have also realised that this meant the food was going to be pretty spicy but I thought we could handle it.
How wrong I was.

I was put in charge of ordering, so we had

a sheehk kebab each
2 lots of chicken tikka
2 lots of lamb chops

all of which were excellent and I would come back for these alone

we then had

2 lots dry meat which was good but not as addictive as others have stated
1 lamb karahi which was very good
1 king prawn karahi which was so hot Rachel had to dip her prawn in water to take a bit of the heat off

various rice and peshwari naan.
All this worked out at £20 each.

And all I have to show for it is this poorly lit photo which doesn't do the amount of food we got justice, or the amount of sweat dripping off of people's faces justice, either.

Would I come back? Mmmh maybe, in the middle of the afternoon with some cold beers for some kebabs and lamb chops after having an oyster and bone-marrow stop at St John, but not for the full bhoona and an hour long wait.

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