Sunday, 24 February 2013

Red Fort, Lark Lane, Liverpool

In my quest for recession-friendly dining, it recently come to my attention that a forgotten favourite of mine, the Red Fort, does a Sunday deal of 3 courses for £10. How have I not seen this before? I had not been to the Fort since 2008 and was not overtly impressed due to the sub-zero temperature in the restaurant, a veggie vindaloo which resembled an Asda special and a lack of real coffee. However with a bargain on offer like this one, it was high time that I gave them a second chance.

Lark Lane is a hive of activity on a Sunday, with all the eateries vying cheek by jowl for customers, all offering a similar priced deal as the Fort. Sunday lunches and little plates of tapas can become humdrum and sometimes all you want is a massive curry to spice up your weekend. The Fort was unusually empty with only 3 tables taken but at least the Carnivore and I had the pick of tables, opting for the cosy booth-style arrangement at the back. The staff were friendly and attentive without being intrusive; although the Fort is spacious, it still offers a degree of privacy so you don't feel like your conversations are being eavesdropped.

To start, we had popadoms- fresh and with the right amount of satisfying snap- and a bountiful pickle tray. Top marks for the Lime Pickle- the Red Fort's offering is a smoother, easier-on-the-eye offering and less oily than the usual chunky, greasy one that most restaurants have. A welcome change. For the second course, the Carnivore was kind enough to opt for veggie samosas so I could try them- delicious and bursting with fresh veg, home made as opposed to the cash-and-carry frozen that Master Chef and co offer. I liked the sound of Aloo Pakora, the starchy brother of the Onion Bhaji if you like.

The Aloo Pakora made a welcome change from bhajis, a fine batter filled with a lightly spiced fluffy potato, comparable to a fancy savoury cake. These were served with a chili dip and a yogurt. So far, so good and hopefully not too full for the main event.

The mains consisted of one pilau (coloured-yippee!), a wonderfully fluffy naan, a veggie madras for me and a lamb madras for the Carnivore. What a feast! The Carniovre devoured the Madras and I was overwhelmed at the amount of veg in mine. As you know, my pet hate is restaurants that use tinned veg or those frozen bags for 79p from Iceland. Full marks for the Fort, providing me a veritable feast of okra, spuds, mushrooms and aubergine, heightened with coriander.

Curryholics, I believe the UNI has been toppled from its throne as Liverpool's best curry house. All hail the Red Fort.

Red Fort on Urbanspoon

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Hi Vindaloo Kings and Queens!