72-72 Western Road, Southall, Middlesex, London, England, UB2 5DZ, United Kingdom

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Some of the most authentic Punjabi food in London can be found at this long-established fixture of the Asian community of Southall. The main dining room was completely refurbished in January 2007 and the look is modern and smart. There is a pair of plasma TV screens in the dining room that show Bollywood films, which is somewhat surreal but quite fun. The clientele is mainly Asian families, and portions are designed with that in mind i.e. large, but they will pack up whatever you can't finish. I have been coming to the Brilliant on a regular basis for over two decades, and it serves consistently excellent food. It has been running since November 1975, and long may it continue.

Amongst my favourite dishes are the chicken starters, e.g. butter or jeera chicken, the tasty bhajia mix or the lovely aloo tikki (chilli chicken is not for the faint of heart). I would suggest in particular trying the tandoori quail, a fairly recent menu addition, which can be superb. Fish pakora is another good starter, a tasty snack. For main courses the methi chicken is superb, as is just about any prawn dish. Owner/chef Gulu Anand has his own garam masala recipe made from forty ingredients, and the quality of the spicing here is very high. Breads have not always been their strong point, but this has improved with the addition of a romali roti hemisphere and a chef from India who knows how to make it properly. The romali roti is now superbly light and airy. Another highlight here is the kulfi, which is made from scratch (very few Indian restaurants in the UK make their own) and excellent, as is the halwa. 

Service is quite slick at the Brilliant, and would shame many a French restaurant. A nice touch has been the addition of some "healthy eating" menu options which are much lighter than the traditional curries, which use ghee. This has been at the instigation of Dipna Anand, owner Gulu's daughter, who has recently completed her degree in catering (she got first class honours as one might hope) and is actively involved with the restaurant. The food here is remarkably good value (though it is actually costly by the ultra-cheap standards of Southall). 


Further reviews: 16th Jul 2023 | 12th Feb 2023 | 18th Dec 2022 | 17th Sep 2022 | 17th Aug 2021 | 13th Sep 2020 | 05th May 2019 | 06th Aug 2017

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User comments

  • Ian Hoare

    Since last we were there, the place has been entirely refurbished and is now decorated in a very stylish and modern black and white scheme. Not one, but THREE large screen TVs made something of a distraction, not so much for the Bollywood, which I'm told is normal, but for somewhat surreal experience of watching Gordon Ramsay learning from Mr Anand how to use a Tandoor - a mixed pleasure. Happily the food is as good as it ever was. With our pepper papads, while we were awaiting our dining companions, there were two groups of relishes. The chutneys were freshly home made, a green mint/chili based one and a red tomato (ketchup?) one. The other group consisted of carrot, lemon, sweet tamarind???? and an extraordinarily good mix under oil - don't ask me what the goodies in it were. Could have been octopus, from the texture, but not fishy. Starters, we had mixed bhajees (onion bhajias) these were not onion bhajias but were indeed little crisp fried balls of mixed vegetables in the usual batter. Excellent. Our companions ate a sweet corn pili-pili. with pleasure, though she was a little taken aback by the hotness (It should be, of course). Then between us, we had a "full bowl" of Chicken.Palak (spinach). This is a Brilliant special and was wonderful, not very hot, but delicately and subtly spiced. Excellent rice and very good naan. Cost 25 a head including plenty of cobra beers and a glass of chardonnay for one.

  • R Gatha

    Having not been to this restaurant for a number of years, I thought I would give it another try given the refurbishment earlier this year and your favourable reviews. Unfortunately I cannot agree with your rating, as the meal I had was average at best and far better can be had elsewhere in Southall. For starters we had butter chicken, chilli chicken, aloo tikki and the bhajia mix. The chilli chicken was very well spiced (and not over-hot) but the butter chicken had literally no taste to it. The bhajia mix was very dry and had the consistency of dough balls. Far better was the aloo tikki which was a very nice combination of flavours and textures. For main, the methi chicken was made about as well as the dish can be. However, the lamb biryani was poor. Whilst the rice was fragrant, it was also very dry as if it had been reheated. It also tasted as if the lamb and rice had been thrown together at the last minute. The quality of ingredients used (especially the chicken and lamb) left a lot to be desired, and I am not sure that I enjoyed the same level of service that you are offered - perhaps they treat their regular diners a little differently. Overall, there are better Indian restaurants in Southall and all across England.