Club 2000

427 Rayners Lane, London, England, HA5 5ER, United Kingdom

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  • 020 8868 2500
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This restaurant seems to cater mainly for Asian families. Decor is basic, with no tablecloths, a few African masks and statues, lots of sparkly lights, two plasma screens and some worrying looking electrical wiring in places, but on this Sunday night the place was packed out. The owners appear to be Gujarati, but the menu has plenty of meat dishes and some East African influences such as several varieties of mogo (cassava). Prices are very fair indeed: popadoms were 50p, starters £3.50 - £12.99 (but mostly around £4), main course curries were £5.95, naan bread £1.50, rice £1.50. A pint of Cobra beer is just £2.50, which would be hard to find in a pub, never mind a restaurant.

Popadoms were fried to order and were good and crisp, served with home-made chutneys: a thin but spicy tomato chutney, and a thick spicy mint chutney (13/20). Fish tikka was excellent, chunks of tilapia marinated then cooked in the tandoor, served on an iron skillet with fried onions (13/20). Vegetable samosas were pleasant enough, with thin crispy coating but the filling was a little dull (11/20). However I was delighted to find patra, a very rare dish on restaurant menus. This Gujarati dish involves Indian vine leaves filled with a spices and gramflour, set in layers, steamed then sliced and fried. The version here was the best I have eaten, avoiding the over-dryness that can afflict this dish; here the patra was tasty and moist with good texture (15/20).

My main course methi chicken was rather ordinary, the meat seemingly very cheap, though correctly cooked, and the sauce tasting of fenugreek but used too much ghee for my liking (11/20). A bhindi masala was better, the bhindi cooked a little longer than ideal but by no means mushy, the onion-based masala having plenty of spicy flavour (13/20). Chana masala had reasonably tender chickpeas but a rather watery sauce (11/20) while mattur paneer was rather dull (11/20). Naan bread was very good (13/20) and rice was also nicely cooked, the grains clearly delineated (13/20)

The bill for what turned out to be a mountain of food was just £24 for two, and there was enough left over for another complete meal. Service was friendly and efficient, and the closely packed tables lend to a relaxed, informal cafe atmosphere. This is authentic cooking which at times was very good indeed.

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User comments

  • R Gatha

    Not living locally, I do not frequent this restaurant as much as I would like. The secret here is to feast on the excellent starters "tapas-style" and forget about the mediocre main courses. Going in a larger group means more choice and tonight we ordered Mari Chicken, Manchurian Chicken, Lamb Kebab, Fish Tikka, Bateta Wada and Chilli Paneer to start. Whilst they were all excellent, the undoubted stars were the Fish Tikka and Bateta Wada - which was the best version of this dish that I have eaten anywhere. The main courses of Lamb Bhuna, Chicken Biryani, Tarka Daal and Methi Chicken confirmed my already held view that these are no better than in any local curry house. Rice and breads are nothing special either. Go to this place, stick to the starters, order lots of variety and you will have one of the best Indian meals in the country.