May 27, 2012 Indian, New Town 3 Comments

MJ’s Verdict
There’s something rather odd in Blythe’s desire for curry when the sun is hot and high in the Edinburgh sky. But nonetheless, I was pleased to get to spend a bit of time reading outside of Spice Pavilion before he arrived. We entered the basement restaurant and I was surprised that we were not the only people inside on the rare, glorious day. We were given a choice of seats and were quickly brought menus by the lovely lady who was our server the whole time. I can’t remember a time when I’ve had a server who served an entire room so efficiently and made me feel completely at home.

Inside

After looking through their large a la carte menus, we both decided on the lunch specials, which was a starter, main, rice (pilaf or boiled) or a naan, and tea/coffee.

The lunch menu was small enough to be manageable for the kitchen, but large enough to provide several options for veggies and carnivores alike. I opted for the chicken tikka followed by the Sag Aloo with boiled rice.

The starters took no time to arrive and my dainty portion of chicken tikka was well-cooked and seasoned, but not overly salty as so many chicken tikka (and tandoori) dishes can be, and served with a crisp, wee salad. Blythe’s veggie pakora also looked different than I expected and rather a good portion.

Chicken Tikka

Before long, our mains arrived. Everything was freshly made and piping hot. The sag aloo was nicely spiced without being too oily and the rice was perfectly cooked and nicely presented. I didn’t try the Lamb passander, since I have an aversion to coconut, but it and the naan looked tasty as well.

If I wanted a good Indian meal, and I didn’t want to go all out and head to Mithas, I can’t think of anywhere better to go than Spice Pavilion.

a trio of sauces


 

Blythe’s Verdict
What could be more fitting for a gloriously sunny day than a trip for tasty Indian food in a New Town basement? Well, perhaps a sun-drenched picnic, but to the Spice Pavilion we went, nevertheless.

Naan

I’ve heard many tweeters extol the values of the place, over the past few months, so was full of optimism as we stepped over the threshold, together. We were warmly greeted by our waitress, who proceeded to expertly manage service throughout our stay. Really, she gave an object lesson in how to effectively manage a dining room on your own, keeping all the customers happy throughout.

The place is rather stylish, with beautiful glass light-fittings. The back room, with exposed stone walls looked a really smart spot for an evening of tempting tandoori treats.

Sag Aloo

We were given the choice to select from the full a la carte or go with their lunch menu, which offered a starter, main, rice or naan, and a cuppa for the princely sum of £8.95. We were both happy to select dishes from there, with a good range of options offered.

Veggie pakora

I went for vegetable pakora, followed by lamb passander, with MJ choosing chicken tikka then sag aloo.

Starters arrived promptly and looked really rather nice. Instead of the usual offering of a few mixed vegetable pakoras, this dish comprised a couple of those regulation ones, matched with some individual deep-fried vegetable slices. This was a nice take on a classic Indian starter dish.

Lamb Passander

My main course was good, too. The lamb was nicely tender and the sauce creamy and aromatic. It wasn’t in the realms of the spectacular, but did the job very nicely. The naan was good, and the little bit of MJ’s sag aloo that I tried was very tasty, also.

So overall, I really enjoyed the whole restaurant experience in the Spice Pavilion. The service was just great, put you right at your ease, and allowed you to relax and enjoy your lunch at your leisure, in the smart surroundings. It was prompt and accurate, as well as being overwhelmingly welcoming. The food is fresh and flavour-packed, too, thereby ensuring that every aspect of our time in the place was a complete pleasure.

Lamb Passander

Boiled Rice

Scores
MJ scores Spice Pavilion:
3.5/5 for food
3.5/5 for presentation
4.5/5 for service
4/5 for setting
giving an overall 15.5/20

Blythe scores Spice Pavilion:
3.5/5 for food
3.5/5 for presentation
4.5/5 for service
4/5 for setting
giving an overall 15.5/20

Today’s questers were: Miriam, Blythe

We ate: chicken tikka, vegetable pakora, lamb passander, sag aloo, boiled rice, garlic naan

We drank: sparkly water

We wore: sun wear, no waistcoat

Total bill: c.£20

Square Meal

The Spice Pavilion on Urbanspoon

Written by BKR