To be honest, if I fancy a curry I usually go for the slobbing at home ‘take away’ variety. Piles of plastic containers (bad) and washing up (worse), however this time we fancied treating ourselves to a full restaurant experience for our weekend curry and a pint.
Kushboo is a busy Indian Restaurant & Wine Bar at the bottom of the High Street in Burton Latimer, just outside Kettering. It’s a nice contemporary setting that’s relaxed, light and comfortable. There’s a large downstairs dining area with enough room to accomodate big groups if you book ahead. We didn’t get a chance to see the wine bar upstairs, but from the reviews online, their wide range of cocktails seem very popular.
Hungry and keen to get stuck in, we ordered Cobra beers, a couple of starters and our mains. With a little prompt from the waiter we were also tempted into starting with some poppadoms.
Light, crispy and impossibly thin, they landed with the usual assortment of chutneys and sauces for dipping. Within moments of starting, I’d managed to clumsily spill yellow mint sauce all over the immaculate white linen tablecloth.
By this point the restaurant was already busy with a few parties packing out the seating. It’s clearly a popular dining destination in the town. A young family behind us seemed well catered for and it added to a family-friendly feel, however the language from the parties was getting progressively ‘spicier’ as the evening went on.
Our starters were simple but well prepared, a chicken tikka with a vibrant fresh salad and a plate of onion bhaji. Chicken tikka is my favourite Indian starter and a real treat when we do decide to eat out. There’s something about a sprinkling of lemon juice on soft marinated chicken that I enjoy every time. The onion bhaji was just as tasty, large and crispy with a hit of coriander.
When we ordered our mains I was taken aback and a little intimidated by the number of options. Everything from Balti to Bhuna, Korai to Korma - twenty varieties of curry by my count, all with the option of chicken, lamb, prawn, fish or vegetables. Not to mention another thirty dishes that fell under ‘Kushboo specialities’ or ‘Chef specialities’ and a selection of tandoori grill items. Several of the party next to us had given up and just ordered chips.
I love to try new things each time I eat out, it’s one of the main reasons I enjoy writing these reviews! However I have to admit, with this menu I really didn’t know where to start, turning this experience into a kind of curry roulette. In the end I closed my eyes, pointed and ended up with a Lamb Sagoti, described in the menu as spinach, fresh mustard, garlic, ginger and spring onion.
The plates were red hot, which is always a good sign and our curries followed soon after in an assortment of serving dishes and bowls - all the better to share. I immediately dived into my Sagoti, along with the cauliflower bhajis, rice and garlic naan we’d ordered to mop up the sauces. The lamb was tender, the curry saag-like and a bit dry with a sweet earthy flavour. A little too sweet to my taste and I must admit I did prefer the chicken balti that my husband was eating. Tangy with tomato and rich with onions, it was delicious. In the interests of writing this review, I made my excuses and stole most of his sauce.
Both dishes complimented each other so we enjoyed mixing and matching with the sides. Because they were freshly cooked they didn’t taste greasy or leave us full of regret after we were done, and the Cobra beer on tap went down very nicely. Neither curry was particularly spicy, so we might be a bit braver next time we visit.
At the end of our meal, our bill arrived with fresh orange segments and mints which made an interesting change. I’m not sure if there’s a dessert menu as we weren’t offered one, but the large table behind us celebrating a birthday were surprised with a nice looking cake.
We did find the service a little inconsistent depending on who was serving us at the time. One younger chap was lovely, clearly nervous and falling over himself to impress. Another, far more experienced server was brusque to the point of bristly. He didn’t strike us as rude, but anyone looking to make friendly banter with this waiter might be a bit put off.
So, how did our evening at Kushboo compare to a cozy curry night at home? Well, you can’t stick the TV on, so you’ll be forced to make conversation with your significant other or friends which may be a pro or con depending on how you see it! Kushboo offers takeaway food too, so it’s clear to see you are paying a restaurant ‘premium’ for essentially the same food, but the atmosphere was good, the food tasty and not having to wash up is always a bonus.
Our two course meal with a couple of sides and drinks came to £65.70.
Address: 31-33 High Street, Burton Latimer - Phone: 01536 420122 - Website: www.kushboo.co.uk
This was an anonymous review which was paid for by the diner