Mumbai Blues, Waltham… First visit
I went to 'Mumbai Blues' on Monday 14th December 2015 with my wife, Jan.
A day spent pulling all the Christmas decorations, table settings and specially painted glasses out from the loft. Most put into place for the ensuing festivities. Then a very strange breaking of habit with a snap decision to go out and eat at a previously untried restaurant.
Perhaps not so strange really. I’ve been aware of Mumbai Blues for a long time and my wife had already visited a few years back for a staff do.
A ‘safe’ start with the ‘Poppadom Box for Two’ - 2 Plain Poppadoms, 2 Garlic Poppadoms & 4 Naan Bread Twists”. We had these with all four items from the pickle tray. I make my own chutneys and had just finished and preserved a lime pickle at home. I could moan about the quality of restaurant offerings in general but let’s concentrate on those cleverly named naan bread ‘twists’. The dough was cooked but still fluffy inside and there was enough oil in the mix to ensure a light crispy surface outside. Simple but effective.
My choice for main was 'Cod Rogan Balti'. Described on the menu as, “Perfectly flakey Cod cooked in Balti spices, topped with Cherry Tomatoes & Rogan Josh sauce. Garnished with a crushed Onion Bhaji topping.” When I ordered I was told this was a good choice.
Of course, it’s great to design such a fine sounding dish but, let’s face it, everything falls flat if the kitchen can’t deliver. No such worries here… The fish was caressed by the gentle heat of Balti spicing. The Rogan Josh sauce added deep, complex warmth and the crunchy, crumbled bhaji gave delightful contrasting texture. The master-stroke was to present everything on a sticky sweet and sour slick of balsamic reduction. Pilau rice (good pilau rice) helped to soak up much of the sauce but I freely admit to running a finger all over my plate to savour every last bit of goodness.
I’d come out with no real expectations and here I was, two miles from home, having a mini triumph of a meal. Smashing.
My wife, Jan’s, main course was just as pleasing to her.
‘Modhu Murgi’ was her choice… “Honey roasted Chicken lightly spiced with Yoghurt, Ginger, Olive Oil and light Chilli served with a Courgette and mouth-watering Tomato Sauce.” This could have been a car crash of badly juggled sweetness, cream and heat but once again the balance of flavours was spot on.
That was enough for us. We were relaxed and already talking about coming back when we have mentally prepared our stomachs to try a more complex meal.
I'm so pleased we decided to give our kitchen a rest for at least one night. This is not high end dining but the quality of cooking and the clear suggestion that there is enjoyment waiting in all the rest of the menu means I can recommend Mumbai Blues with confidence. So four out of five stars from me... But, of course, you do know what a fussy devil I am!
Jax Hussain, owner and all round good guy, must take credit for designing the menu, which he is perfectly well skilled to cook himself. I got to know him as he established his latest venture right on my doorstep in Scartho. ‘Lids Tapas & Cocktails’ is a hugely positive addition to our local community. It really is time I went in there for more than a coffee and had a decent sampling of the foods on offer. Watch this space… There will be a review of that here soon!