I’ve realized recently that maybe I’m being unduly harsh to the restaurants here in Cambridge. After a somewhat disappointing first term here, I wrote it off as a city of chains and mediocrity… but that’s not really fair. I haven’t really tried a large enough sample of stuff to truly be able to say that. So, since I’m going into my last term here (hellooo Easter), I’m going to make a concerted effort to actually eat out – preferably at independent chains. Starting with an Indian restaurant around here: Curry King!
Curry King is located on Bridge Street, near the Round Church, in a little alley way behind La Tasca. I don’t really have a reason for choosing to go here, except that I wanted a change of scenery from around Darwin College and… well… Bridge Street is about as far as I was willing to go. The restaurant was airy, bright and clean… but there was nobody there. I don’t know if this is because of our timing (2pm-ish on a weekday?) or because it is a little too hidden away to get foot traffic, but that’s usually a disconcerting sign. Whatever! The guy and I went in anyway. We’re daring like that.
And it was fine, honestly. We got a papadom course to start with, which was presented quite nicely:
Plus a pair of vegetable samosas, which were presented in a way that’s reminiscent of cafeteria food. The samosas themselves weren’t bad – not too greasy, satisfyingly crunchy on the outside and savory hot on the inside.
For curries, we decided to go the safe route, getting a chicken jalfrezi – which, by the way, is apparently Britain’s favorite curry dish nowadays – and the dish it overtook, tikka masala. Lamb tikka, in our case, since I was looking for a little variety. The jalfrezi was definitely the bigger highlight, not a small part due to it not looking like day glo paint.
Still, even if the tikka masala was an unnatural shade of pink, it did taste pretty good. It reminds me of getting sweet and sour sauce in the U.S. from Chinese corner shops – the bright cherry red of it always makes you wonder if you’re ingesting actual cancer, but after a while, the comfort of greasy fried dough and meat lulls you into a mindset of “bring it on, I’m going to just keep stuffing my face anyhow.”
In this case, our vehicles for slurping down radioactive sauce were delightful: mushroom biryani and garlic nan. Both were flavorful enough to have been dishes on their own, but not so flavorful that they couldn’t take a backseat to the curry. I would order both these things again in a heartbeat.
So yeah, Curry King! In the end, with this and a drink and a little for a tip, our bill came to about £15 per person. It’s not a bad option and… if it’s normally this empty… it might be a good place to go for a quiet meal with a bigger group of people.
Curry King // 5 Jordans Yard, Bridge Street, Cambridge CB2 1UG // telephone: (01223) 324351