Saturday, February 8

Food: Mandalay Burmese Restaurant Click for more info

I'd be lying if I said that Burmese food was ever on my list of cuisines to try. But this being London I guess it's not surprising that there's at least one restaurant offering a menu, and I have to admit I was quite excited at the prospect of checking it out. I didn't really know what to expect.

The place itself was a little slummy. We're talking a family owned, not-more-than-thirty-covers cafe style establishment here, but considering the acceptability of most chicken shops I don't see how that in itself can be cause of complaint. The menu was halal so we had lots of options - the fritter and spring roll starters were pretty good in my opinion, while the chilli chicken, mint lamb, fried fish and meatball curry were all decent if a little unfulfilling - both literally and metaphorically in fact. Service was a mixed bag: the staff and owner were very friendly but also very slow, but everything we ordered did come eventually. The place was packed this Saturday night and at least two reservation-less groups were turned away while we were enjoying our meal.

The bill was a very pleasant 12 quid a head which I found to be definite value for money. On balance though Mandalay was very average - a place I wouldn't go back to unless I was actually passing - which in a city full of options is no bad thing.