Thursday 9 October 2008

Dhanmondi - Whitehill, 8/10/08

How many times in life do first impressions prove wildly off the mark? Chamberlain on Hitler: '(Adolf) is a man of his word'. Decca on the Beatles: 'we don't like their sound and guitar music is on the way out'.

In not quite such drastically mistaken fashion I once described Dhanmondi as ‘a likeable local’ and sure enough it is popular - over half full on a Wednesday evening in early October – and very likeable – the service is so kind – but really I was simply damning the place with faint praise. Dhanmondi only gets better with each visit. The 2007 curry awards included the restaurant in the country’s top 100, there are some 8000 across Britain.

An excellent midweek meal was highlighted by their fabulous Kurzi Lamb. A whole baby sheep dressed to the nines in floral vegetables, supple, succulent, the most gorgeous roast meat you could hope for. Unusually Sali Boti came as chicken but was delicious, fruity and sweet with the buttery fragrance of bay leaves and enriched with cinnamon. Gusht E Ada, gingery lamb and green peppers and Nawabi King Prawn, rich, dark, briney and gravy-ish proved pretty moreish too.

Huge metal pans of cauliflower and peas were a well-chosen accompaniment, gently perfumed pilau and good Naan’s supplemented the feast. Indeed, it felt like a special occasion. There aren’t many establishments that make one feel as welcome, at ease, content and so it joins my ‘area’ top 10.

FOOD: 3.5

Willp2328: 7.5/10

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