Hector is on holiday, so it is a case of maximising the Curry input. On Wednesday straight off the plane form Traben-Trarbach Hector went straight to the Village “Curry House”, Tradeston (129 Nelson St, G52 1EQ) Glasgow – Scotland. Tradeston is one of the most run down areas of Glasgow being located in the hinterland of the old city docks. There are grand plans and the opening of the pedestrian ‘Squiggly Bridge’ is a step in the right direction. Indeed it is a ten minute walk from Central Station via the Squiggly Bridge to The Village.
The first visit Hector made to The Village was some years ago when a local newspaper did a supplement on Curry in Glasgow. The Desi Style Dishes caught the eye: the Tawa in particular. The menu relates that this is a ‘… concoction of Black Pepper, Ginger, Garlic and the freshest of Herbs and Spices’. This is what Hector looks for in a curry, herbs, spice and hopefully minimal sauce. To say I have raved about The Village since that first visit is not an understatement. The Bradford experience has taught Hector that cafes full of locals is a splendid guide to the quality of that which is being served. Not available upstairs is the ‘Village Desi Korma’: …’a Yogurt base with Black Pepper, Green Chillies and copious amounts of special Herbs and Spices’. This is nothing like a Korma, it has never seen Cream or Coconut. It can blow your head off if you dare ask for extra Chillies. This is now regarded as the Friends of Hector as the signature dish of the café. So why does it change every time one orders it? Hector wrote to Mr Baig the owner last year to point this out. Things did improve; indeed we are convinced they switched it with the Tawa to avoid the confusion, now we just accept that whatever gets served it will be excellent. Some days it is creamier, some days it has more citrus, some days it is brown and some yellow.
The Curry-Heute: Jonathan met Hector today for lunch. Jonathan had the Chicken Desi Korma, Hector had the Lamb Tawa. Both resembled the dishes we had eaten before, nothing is ever a perfect match. Perhaps this is part of the adventure, but is does mean that first time visitors may or may not be impressed. Lord Clive’s last visit from Crawley made him a convert. Dr Stan has been meeting us with increasing regularity for Saturday lunch, he has even been known to eat the same meal! Steve was not impressed last year and as far as I know has not been back. Alan now expects that we go there before Motörhead every November…and it does not sell cider…or any other alcohol for that matter.
There is also the question of The Blackboard
As one enters the café a blackboard displays an ever rotating range of curries that have never made the menu. After Hector decided towards the end of last year to have a mid afternoon curry before meeting the chaps for ‘bier today’, there was a realisation that one could not have the Tawa or the Desi Korma every week. Experimentation became the norm and the blackboard provides scope for this. The Aloo Gosht is normally Lamb on the bone, superb! However the dish of the moment has to be the Nahiree. This is big, and I mean big, lumps of Lamb cooked in the Desi sauce. It is the most old-fashioned tasting curry I have had since, well the first restaurant curry experienced in the Green Gate (Bank St, Glasgow) back in the 1960s.
Hector has started asking Mr Baig if he has ever thought of building flats upstairs? One feels a feeling of disappointment when the Saturday ritual curry is over. One also has to fight off the munchies of an evening, yes; a second curry in one day has to be admitted to.