Inspector Renault – So tell me, Hector, why did you come to Tegernsee?
Hector – I came for the Curry.
Inspector Renault – But many people think Germany is a Curry-Desert.
Hector – They are misinformed.
Hector & Marg have been to Tegernsee often, Hector’s first encounter of the Tegernsee Hofbräu Spezial Hell being back in 1997. How long the Mirch Masala (Bahnhof Str, 12, Tegernsee, 83864, Bayern) has been here is unknown, we have walked past it for years before the dawn of Curry-Heute. Times, they are a changing.
It’s an hour on the BOB from München to Tegernsee. As one approaches Gmund the Lake unfolds itself. On a Sunny Day it can be Spectacular, in the Snow – Stunning! Today was Grey and Overcast, still, Hector has traditionally spent the majority of his time at Tegernsee indoors, today was no exception.
Having completed the Ritual that Tegernsee offers, we entered the Mirch Masala just after 17.30. Three sets of Diners were already present. We were shown to a small table right at the door, one of us would be in the Full Draught. I had spotted another Couple well inside at a larger table so we were not accepting this. Another small table hard up against the bar counter was the compromise. Were the expecting the Phantom Bus Trip which never arrives? To be fair, the Dozen that were present as we arrived probably doubled during our visit, but the place was substantial, the exterior shots should give the Reader an idea of the scale of this operation. Quite a Building with Décor one would not usually associate with a Curry House.
We had taken a copy of the Takeaway Menu as we walked down from the Station earlier, Hector had already decided. The Karahi Gosht made no mention of the Dreaded Capsicum, this could be verified. The Waiter assured me that Capsicum was not part of this Dish. By now we had switched to English. It is rare to find Staff in German Curry Houses who do not speak English. The Menus are always written as Phonetic Versions of the Dishes on any UK Menu. Who invented Curry anyway? Hector assumed Rice would be inclusive, again in Germany it normally is. We discussed Heat. British Scharf please, not deutsche Scharf. It was written.
Lamm Curry was Marg’s choice. No need to discuss the Spice level, it was unlikely a Standard German Curry would trouble Marg. How Big are the Nan Breads? – asked Marg. The Waiter of course had to tell us they were Large when by British Standards they were likely not to be. We’ll get Rice. – I informed Marg, the Waiter nodding in confirmation. So Size didn’t matter. A Garlic and Coriander Nan was requested, this appeared to take The Waiter back slightly, now he knows.
The Karahi was described as being served on a Pfanne, not a Pfand, Bernard, a Flat Iron Serving Dish on which the Germans serve Grilled, Sizzling Meat. Fearing that Meat could be all that was given and also wishing to establish what else the Chef could create, I negotiated a Half Portion of Alu Saag. Again one felt this was a Departure from their Norm.
A Poppadom, served in Two Halves was set before us with Three Dips. A New Waiter talked us through the Mango Sauce, Yoghurt and a third which came with a Warning. Marg was caught out. That is Hot! The Poppadom had embedded Cumin Seeds, always a welcome sign and rarely seen in the UK. On collecting the Debris another Waiter, which judging by his costume was Mein Host, explained they have a Huge Array of such Poppadoms, one even containing Fish. This I would like to encounter.
We were asked if we were Resident in Tegernsee. As if we could afford that. Some very Infamous Folk did have Posh Holiday Homes around this lake during the Dark Period of German History. That we were from the UK, Scotland in particular appeared moderately intriguing.
Hector heard his Curry leave the Kitchen. It Sizzled all the way to the table. The Pfanne was covered in Aluminium Foil, why? This surely defeated the purpose? The Presentation was certainly different, the Curry itself looked very Familiar. I was warned not to touch Anything! Indeed, on taking the Photos some Masala managed to rise up an made the back of my hand aware of its presence. Marg’s Curry looked to have the same Familiar Masala, just fewer Bits. The Waiter served the Rice from a Ridiculous Mountain. Just how much Rice do they think People can eat? The Alu Saag, hereafter called Aloo Palak was in the Classic German Creamy Masala. We had achieved Diversification.
Marg dipped the Garlic and Coriander Nan which had been quartered. She made Favourable comments – Very enjoyable, with a Sweet and Creamy Masala which went well with the Garlic and Coriander Nan. She suspected it would be too Sweet for the Hector Palate. I had to sample the Lamm Curry. It was as Marg described. The saving bit was the Nan, this was Well-seasoned and decidedly Savoury. The Masala I may have already described as Familiar.
Chicken Tikka Masala comes to mind
If (?) Hector was ever asked to produce this now Bog Standard Creation it would be Sauce from a Jar. That is how the Masala here came across. It was identical to anything one might have purchased in the Supermarket. How Hector knows this he will never admit. The Masala was Pleasant, on the Sweet side and certainly not Spicy and totally lacking in Seasoning. So much for British Scharf.
The Waiter was over soon after we started to check all was well. Marg had spotted – Them – as soon as the Lamm Karahi had been delivered. Four pieces of Capsicum, three Red, one Green. You assured me there would be No Capsicum, I can count Four Pieces. There was no comment.
The Lamb was Chewy, Marg concurred, and there could ave been more of it. Marg did point out later that I am spoiled in too many Venues. There was little difference in the two Dishes except the extra Green Bits in the Karahi which did not perform much of a function in either Texture or Flavour.
This was the Highlight of the visit. I dipped the Nan and immediately had more Flavour on the Palate than from the Karahi. The Seasoning was Perfect, the Garlic and Coriander made their presence known. The Aloo Palak was Mild, as anticipated, however, this became the focus of the Pleasure. There was enough Potato to give the whole Meal more of a Solid Content. The Creamy Masala is decidedly different from how this is served in the UK, a Pleasant Change.
Half of the Rice was left untouched. Marg finished all of her Meal, most unusual, but then there were no Lamb Chops to fill her before she started her Main Course.
€42.80. We had shared a Large Bottle of Sparkling Water. Complementary Schnapps came with The Bill. Marg enjoyed this. Marg had the Schnapps?
The Calling Card was given but as they was no T’Internet this high up in Tegernsee I could not display the Curry-Heute Website. They did not appear too bothered.
The Curry was Good enough not be considered – Poor, but not good enough for a Hector Recommendation.