December 3, 2011 BYO, Indian 4 Comments

Dalry Road is just round the corner from where I live, and has some nice restaurants, but for one reason or another, I haven’t sampled any of its delights, of late. Last night I took the opportunity to rectify that situation, with a trip to Kebabish.

Kebabish is the UK’s biggest chain of Asian restaurants, specialising in spicy treats from their famous grill. Free corkage BYOB is the order of the day, so we popped in to the Co-op, handily located a couple of doors down, and picked up the inevitable lager.

The place was busy when we arrived, but fortunately they had a couple of bigger tables free, so they were able to fit in our party of 9.

While the chairs were comfortable, the place has a really cramped feel to it, and not just because it was busy. We were seated right in front of the large open kitchen, where we had the extremely dubious honour a witnessing the boss man glower at his staff as they busily prepared dishes.

If people want to run their kitchen with the atmosphere of frowning scrutiny, that’s fine, but in this circumstance, where everyone could see what was going on, it seemed very out of place, to me.

There was a good deal of confusion about which menu we were to order from. We were first given the full a la carte, then this was taken away and replaced by a Christmas menu. This was swapped back, then one of the many waiters offered us yet another deal, not on either of the menus. It was a total mess.

Eventually, we settled upon an array of main courses, with some poppadoms and pickles for a light, shared starter.

The main courses arrived quickly, with my mixed grill looking incredibly impressive. It was a huge plate of meat comprising lamb kebabs, chicken wings, lamb chops, and further pieces of chicken and lamb, all served on a bed of onions.

The meat was all excellently cooked, with a good range of power-packed seasonings. The dishes from the grill are definitely the stand-out items on offer. The more standard items that you’d find in any number of Indians, around the town, looked good, but not terribly special.

Overall, the food that I had at Kebabish was extremely good. The service and setting don’t match it, at all. The frowner-in-chief should turn his attention away from glowering at his chefs and glower at his serving staff, instead. If that dead-eye stare has the same effect on them as is does on the kitchen staff, he’ll address the place’s real weaknesses, in no time.

Blythe scores Kebabish
4/5 for food
3/5 for presentation
2/5 for service
2/5 for setting
giving an overall 11/20

Today’s late Lunch Questers were: a gaggle of bedraggleds

We wore: checked shirts (2), grey sweater, grandad shirt, red t-shirt, jumper with zip, pakora hat, maroon polo, suit

We ate: mixed grill, an array of main courses, poppadoms, pickle tray, rice, naan

We drank: lagers

Total bill: c.£130 (9 diners), not including the lager from the Co-op

Kebabish Original Edinburgh on Urbanspoon

Written by TheDudley