Name: Sheba
Area: Brick Lane
Address: 136 Brick Lane
London E1 6RU
Phone: 020 7247 7824

Visits to this restaurant ...

1. 29 Jun 2000|2. 25 Jan 2001|3. 26 Sep 2002|4. 31 Jul 2003|5. 25 Mar 2004
6. 29 Jun 2006|7. 25 Feb 2010

Neil gives Hannibal Lektor a run for his money.
Scary or what?

Visit Report

Visit Number: 49 (visit 5 of 7 for this restaurant)
Date of visit: 25 Mar 2004
Cost per head: £25.00 (2 beers)

Serv Amb Beer Start Nan Rice Main Veg VFM Score Comments
Overall 5.6 6.3 5.9 6.8 5.6 6.5 7.3 6.1 5.9 6.34
Dave 5 7 7 7 5 6 7 7 7 6.5 See Dave's comments
Tim 6 5 5 6 8 7 6 6 5 6.0 See Tim's comments
Graeme 7 6 6 7 4 6 7 6 5 6.1 See Graeme's comments
Mark 7 7 6 5 4 7 9 6 6.6 See Mark's comments
Richard 5 6 6 5 6 5 6 6 6 5.7 See Richard's comments
Neil 5 6 6 7 7 6 7 5 6 6.2 See Neil's comments
Robin 6 7 5 8 6 8 8 6 6 6.9 See Robin's comments
Jon 4 6 6 9 5 7 8 7 6 6.7 See Jon's comments

All Comments

Dave - Service was slow and the food was served luke warm. The nan bread was doughy but the Prawn Puri and Chicken Curry were both quite tasty.  Overall not bad, but I fear the Sheba is in decline and will not warrant a re-visit.

Tim - I had fried fish starter which was a thin fried steak from some kind of white fish. Main course of chicken gatta was OK. Vegetable portions seemed quite small, though mushroom bhaji was nice. Service was quite attentive, but there was a long wait between courses. Despite reference to draft Indian beer on the menu, all that was available was bottled Kingfisher. Not as cheap as it used to be.

Graeme - Did we witness the demise of the Sheba this evening? It didn't deliver on two fronts that, in the past, have separated it from the following pack: beer and VFM. On the bar were beer taps for draught Cobra and Kingfisher, but they weren't working - only bottled Kingfisher was available (which tasted fine, but that's not the point). From being one of the cheapest places in Brick Lane (with good quality food), it's now just a run-of-the-mill curry house with the price on the high side for the area. I still enjoyed my meal, it just wasn't as good as I have come to expect at Sheba - my King Prawn Puree starter was very nice and my Chicken Madras main course was tasty (although the sauce was too 'wet') - I thought the nan was bit doughy, though. I'm now only 1 behind Rats in the appearances following his strange decision to go on honeymoon over the end of the month - will he ever be allowed out again?

Mark - Having arrived to find that Griff had blown our cover it was good to get some comp popadums as well as 2 sets of relish. Lamb tikka to start was a bit on the small side but quite tasty. However, if you like big lumps of breast (and I don't mean Jordan's plastic) then go to the Sheba. Balti Chicken Mushroom was excellent as usual as the Sheba continues to serve the best chicken in Brick Lane. We managed to spend £63 on beer between 8 and yet everyone seemed amazed the meal cost nearly £25 each. Less sports talk than usual as the anoraks discussed websites, databases and trend analysis.

Richard - Slightly above average sort of place I thought. I choose an Indian "scotch egg" starter, and boring lamb pasanda, both of which were fine, but didn't give the Sheeba a chance to shine. The only thing of note about the evening was Griff ordering beers for everyone and not just himself (unusual), then departing without leaving enough money (typical). Oh, and there were calls for numerous variations of curry mark stats on the website (sort it out Graeme).

Neil - The Sheeba has certainly gone down hill since my last visit. Decor is quite rough and the service was very slow except for when we sat down and millions of poppadoms appeared, though even then we had to ask for more chutneys. The Lamb Gatta was fresh and made up for the minute quantities of the side dishes. I'd say that this is now an average curry house that no longer delivers on the VFM. Even the strange lavatorial plumbing won't bring me back in a hurry.

Robin - Service improved a little from the previous visit, but still fails to match the quality of the food. A lovely king prawn puri preceded a return to the balti version of the chicken jalfrezi, which was far superior to the regular version I had last time. It was tasty, aromatic and had a pleasant degree of bite. Apart from the excellent special rice (which was available although not listed in the menu), the other vegetables were a but disappointing (rather greasy), as was the nan (a bit dry). I also marked the beer down since we were forced to drink the bottled variety, the draft being off. The prices seem to have gone up a lot since last time (by about 50%, impacting the VFM mark), but this may have been due to Griff drinking a few pints of Carlsberg while waiting for us to turn up. I hope he didn't sneak in a melon dish as well. Overall still a good curry house but not yet back in the top flight.

Jon - The previous high marks for the Sheba have obviously gone to the new owners’ heads as, having only made the top six by default due to the demise of the Jaipur, it turned in another slightly disappointing performance. On the positive side, the Reshmi Kebab was excellent and the Balti Chicken Jalfrezi was also very good. The rice and veg were pretty good but the Keema Nan was disappointing. The presence of Cobra and Kingfisher taps turned out to be no more than a ruse as the only Indian beer on offer was bottled Kingfisher. The service was slow (they tried to mask it by supplying extra popadums) and the Sheba’s previous reputation of excellent VFM has been completely dispelled by a lumpy price tag. Griff did his usual trick of leaving early leaving insufficient funds having drunk more than his fair share of very expensive Carlsberg (£3.50 a pint!?), but we have come to expect nothing less.

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