All reader reviews by GQ

Original Lahore Kebab House

It may be a low end place in terms of decor but he certainly smashes to pieces some of the the more up market curry houses around the corner in brick lane. The food is awesome and the service was also incredibly good. Average waiting time for food was 5 mins and our bill came in at under £15 per head, with the food tasting much better than many £50 a head curry houses ive been to. Will definitely be back!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006
Overall rating 9 stars
Food 9 | Service 9 | Atmosphere 8 | Value for money 9

Tiffinbites (Canary Wharf)

I’m sorry to say Tiffin Bites provided me with one of the worst curry eating experiences of my life. Being a very non fussy eater so long as I don’t leave an eating establishment with any nasty after tastes in my mouth, I seldom struggle to find the need to complain.

Tiffinbites however, not only left me raging with anger but very nearly put me off eating curry for life.

The food (in the politest possible way) is only one very short step away from being awful. I ordered a Chicken Karahi thinking it would be the usual blend of sizzling karahi chicken pieces and spices as served by all other Curry houses I’ve had the pleasure of frequenting.

I couldn’t have been more wrong. The chicken had a very synthetic taste to it. Not only was it extremely hard and chewy it also had a stringy texture to it. To make matters worse the dish suffered from an entire lack of flavour. The supposed spices and masalas added to the dish did little to get the mouth watering nor the taste buds tantalising. The dish was totally inedible and after getting jaw ache after the 3rd mouth full I had to give up.

A one off incident perhaps? Not quite. My partner ordered a mixed vegetable curry which again suffered from a similar lack of flavour. We also ordered vegetable rice which was effected by the same syndrome and in addition left a chalky after taste in our mouths.

After questioning the waitress we later found that nothing is prepared fresh on the premises. All food is prepared at a centralised centre and distributed amongst their outlets. This would explain the sorry state of our food as, the whole meal had a very “frozen and reheated” feel to it.

Were the starters any better? We had Aloo Jeera - in Indian Terms this should be a recipe to the effect of cubes of potatoes, dry roasted with cumin seeds, indian spices with garam masala, garnished with juliennes of ginger and fresh coriander. In Tiffin Bites terms this was “Potato Wedges” that appeared to have been taken straight out of the “Birds Eye packet.” The only flavour we got from them was from the salt and pepper we had to add to them in order to spice them up.

For some strange reason Tiffin bites also serve all their food and drink in metal containers and cups, as opposed to conventional tableware. I’m sure this wont be a problem for most people but unfortunately it made me feel like I was back in the dark ages and what little food I did eat it, left a metallic taste in my mouth. Especially after consuming water from my steel cup!

The bill itself was at least 25 – 30% more than what we would have expected to pay had we gone to the nearby located Nando’s or Wagamamas. Although we were happy to pay the bill we were not happy to pay for the Chicken Karahi, which was totally inedible. The staff seemed embarrassed but not surprised by our complaints nevertheless insisted on us settling the bill in full.

After some gentle persuasion the supervisor agreed not to charge for the Chicken Karahi, but not before pushing both our blood pressure levels beyond the medically safe limit.

My partner decided to highlight our experience to the founder and company director “Mr Jamal Hirani” via letter and email, thinking that he may welcome the feedback by means of using it as a benchmark to improve his eating establishments. She is yet to hear back from him nor any representative of the company.

This in my eyes gives the impression of a company who couldn’t care less.

I have since spoken to friends and colleagues who have stated that they’ve had similar experiences at Tiffinbites.

My advise is to definitely stay away from Tiffin Bites.

Monday, January 09, 2006
Overall rating 1 stars
Food 1 | Service 1 | Atmosphere 2 | Value for money 1

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