Mixed Starter for Two, Bhajees in the background
Mixed Grill Starter
Dhansak top left, Punjabi Karahi bottom centre
Lunchtime Special 12-3
I was really impressed with this though the poster outside is misleading. The reality of the deal is any curry on the menu, barring those containing the legendary takeaway gold dust: king prawns + rice, mini naan and a little pot of salad for £4.95. I think that's really decent value.
First visit to Chorlton's latest and probably grandest Curryhouse. This is the only establishment of its type open at noon, though judging by other places I can't see it lasting, the trade will not be sufficient for a place of this size - if it isn't in Manchester Centre or Rusholme then it isn't in Chorlton. We'll see.
Sher Akbar seems to be sister to a place of the same name in Northenden and their menus don't differ much. Inside it's clean adn bright - glass walls yadda yadda - the staff were really nice and attentive though we were pretty much the only folk in there at 2PM on a Saturday afternoon. Early days yet of course.
So - to the food. Unfortunately Sher Akbar seems to have fallen into the trap of so many grand places - (too) extensive menus and not enough 'from scratch cooking'. - The grills are a safe bet as are most starters, popppadoms and the other faff that people like. But when it came to the curries they were only OK. With the exception of the dhansak which was a creamy disaster (pictured top left with pineapple ring). When I asked for the most traditional sounding dish 'Punjabi Karahi' I hoped I was on to a winner but when the guy came back to ask me 'chicken or lamb?', I realised it was the same as ever. Big pot of sauce to smother whatever ingredients the customer wants in it, change the trimmings a bit and before you know it you've got a 200 item menu. Shame.
Some people like these flashy 'you know what you're getting' type places, just not me really. It's fine, clean, edible and tasty - but why not have some slow cooked lamb on the bone or something with a bit more depth behind it. Ah well - no biggie. An enjoyable occasion and to an extent recommended - but only of it's type: big, flashy, fluffy naan, crispy pakora, sizzling platters, inoffensive curries, After Eights and Bailey's for the ladies type affair. You know what I mean.