It has taken Hector a couple of weeks to get back to the New Karahi Palace (51 Nelson Street, Tradeston, Glasgow, G5 8DZ) since the mood first took me. Walking past last weekend, and how many times have I walked past – I spotted different faces – was something afoot?
Dr. Rick persuaded me to join him and his Post-grads for a Swift Half at The Three Judges prior to taking the Subway around to Bridge St. The New Chap at the front of house gestured to the two remaining tables in the downstairs area as I pointed upwards. Upstairs is closed. No explanation, was something afoot?
We were sat in front of both doors, not comfortable. Each time a door opened an Icy Blast accompanied the arrival of a new customer. A couple of Unfortunates came in, for a heat? The decent downstairs tables were occupied by a group of youths who were clearly at home. Mein Host was busy attending to them and so we studied the Menu on the wall to make our selections. We might be eating in The Village yet, this evening, I remarked. Things were not going too well.
The youths were given their Pizza, always a source of amusement for Hector when dining in such an outstanding Curry Outlet. Mein Host came over and took our order. Hector chose the tried and tested Karahi Karela Gosht, Dr. Rick the Handi Gosht. The normal sized portion was selected. Four Chapattis would be sufficient Accompaniments.
For those who are wondering, the absent Dr. Stan had already eaten. Perhaps having had three Curry-Heute Experiences last weekend, Dr. Stan felt like a break. The youths finished their Pizza, the door was not opening with such frequency, a couple of Chaps awaited Takeaways, Hector felt settled.
Mein Host brought the Karahi Karela Gosht and a Chapatti to me first. Was Dr. Rick going to have to wait? Moments later he returned with a very similar looking Handi Gosht. My understanding was that the Handi would be a much Wetter experience, not so this evening. Mein Host insisted on sitting with Hector to have his photo taken, somebody in the Back Shop must have recognised Hector.
Sometimes the Karela can be too dominant, tonight the Melange of Onion, Tomato and Karela was a perfect balance. The near Pulped threesome sat in a blended Masala, this was wonderfully rich, the flavour of Pepper, probably Black, emerged on the palate. The Salt content was bang-on, the full flavours of this creation were enhanced by the Lamb which had been served on-the-bone. Again the Lamb was stunning, in fact the first piece was too hot to eat, too hot even to lift with the Chapatti. They hadn’t, had they?
The Marrow gives a Curry something else, this Curry was sheer delight. Allowing for the pile of bones amassed on the plate there was never any sense of there not being enough. The Portion was more than adequate, however by this time the level of pleasure was such that there was conscious consideration of how much more pleasure would the Half-Kilo would have provided. This Curry was closer in style to that served in the Khyber, Scotland’s first Afghanistan Restaurant. There was the sense that this was a Frontier Curry, with Punjab and Afghan influences.
Unusually, I noticed that my fork had never been used. The singular Chapatti had been topped up, Mein Host ensured we had all we required, twice. Hector has been to nearly all of his favourite Glasgow Curry Houses in the last week, I have been indulged, yet this Curry was a standout!
Meanwhile, across the table, Dr. Rick was clearly having as much fun as Hector, his pile of bones was arranged immaculately on the plate.. The absence of Karela was the only apparent difference, maybe this was not the Handi? This was a mixture of Blended Spices with a fresh injection of Peppers in Ginger, smothering the Tender Meat on-the-bone. The Heat was not for the Weak of Intestine.
If Dr. Stan had been here, he would have concurred.
Mein Host was over again and insisted on having his photograph taken. He introduced himself, Shahed. What The New Karahi Palace has lacked in my time has been a man at the front of house. The venue clearly serves the Asian Community more than Indigenous Scots. To be told the Upstairs was closed without explanation was off-putting. Shahed explained that they were a man down and so had not opened the Upstairs. Having asked who had cooked my Curry, Shahed pointed to a face I did recognise but he was not the normal Chef. The Chef was on holiday – I was informed. So, no need to worry, everything at The New Karahi Palace is in order. The food remains outstanding. A warm seat and a warm welcome from Shahed could really see this venue take off. But then there is the not so small matter of the Super-sized Curry Venue further along Nelson St.
£19.00. This included two soft drinks. Great Value!
The Chaps were assembled at The Laurieston except for Craig and Yvonne. The Ice has taken its toll, Yvonne has a broken wrist… tomorrow is postponed,