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Dr John Hawkins

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Exploring The Locality

Posted on 2007/10/06 12:05:53 (October 2007).

[Thursday 4th October]
The part of London we live in does have a fair amount going for it - it is very central, very convenient for where I work, and generally a nice quiet residential area, with a few nice terraces, and a scattering of very pleasant parks and gardens. On the downside though it is pretty limited in terms of nice pubs and restaurants. We had walked past some of these establishments a few times and generally turned our noses up, but tonight thought instead we ought to cast aside our preconceptions, and give some of these places a go.

So we started off at a curry house (I would normally use the term Indian restaurant, but curry house seems more fitting) named "Top Curry Centre". Yes I know - the name really doesn't bode well. It gives off an impression of being a bit naff from the exterior, stuck in an 80s timewarp, and I am oddly gratified to report that having now eaten there our preconceptions were fairly accurate. We were greeted on entry by a man whose sheer glumness could only be justified if he had just been forced to have his dog put down because it had eaten his cat. We ordered the tikka paneer - nice idea, one of those sizzling platters - but somehow in the process of coating the paneer in spices they actually managed to give it less flavour. The other main course we ordered - a vegetable dansak - was similarly devoid of flavour, in essence a mush of indiscriminate vegetables in a turgid sauce with lots of chilli powder. The cheese nan was a regular nan with a bit of grated cheddar on top (although I have to admit, whilst I'm tempted to shower this inauthentic sundry with snobbery, I actually quite liked this). Whilst the pricing on the food was fairly standard for an Indian, the drinks were really extortionate - even the cheapest non-Indian lager was over 4 quid a pint. So as I was feeling mean I restricted myself to a small bottle of Kingfisher.

So all in all it wasn't that great. I doubt we're going to become regulars.

Before going to the curry place and discovering their astronomical beer prices I had envisioned sinking a couple of pints of lager along with dinner. So instead this had to be re-scheduled to a post dinner activitiy, and we decided to go on a short tour of some of our local pubs.

We started off at the White Swan, which was OK, albeit the sort of loud music and fruit machines type of place which is not really my cup of tea. After that we continued round the corner to The Morpeth Arms, which was perhaps slightly more my kind of thing, albeit on this particular evening somewhat disconcertingly full of lawyers.

Anyway, despite the very disappointing curry experience (well maybe disappointing is the wrong word - we expected it to be bad) it was nice to get out for a change, rather than spending the evening indoors glued to our respective laptops.

Comment 1

FOUR POUNDS A BEER!??!? Are you joking?! I mean that's a LOT for any restaurant... :(

Posted by Lox at 2007/10/06 18:55:57.

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