Name: Bengal Cuisine
Area: Brick Lane
Address: 12 Brick Lane
London E1 6RF
Phone: 020 7377 8405

Visits to this restaurant ...

1. 28 Dec 2000|2. 26 Aug 2004|3. 26 May 2005

Oh, go on then Jon, tell us about Bob Taylor's Baggies career just one more time!

Visit Report

Visit Number: 53 (visit 2 of 3 for this restaurant)
Date of visit: 26 Aug 2004
Cost per head: £20.00 (2 beers)

Serv Amb Beer Start Nan Rice Main Veg VFM Score Comments
Overall 6.9 6.7 7.2 6.5 6.7 6.6 7.2 6.1 7.3 6.84
Dave 7 7 7 7 8 7 9 7 8 7.6 See Dave's comments
John 8 9 10 7 9 8 8 7 8 8.1 See John's comments
Graeme 4 5 8 6 6 6 7 6 7 6.2 See Graeme's comments
Mark 7 8 9 7 6 5 8 8 7.3 See Mark's comments
Brian 7 7 7 8 7 7 8 6 8 7.3 See Brian's comments
Neil 6 6 5 6 5 7 2 5 5 5.0 See Neil's comments
Jon 8 7 7 6 8 7 8 7 7 7.2 See Jon's comments
Richard 8 7 7 7 6 6 8 5 7 6.9 See Richard's comments
Robin 7 7 7 5 6 6 6 6 7 6.2 See Robin's comments
Jeff (Guest) 7 4 5 6 6 7 8 6 8 6.5 See Jeff's comments

All Comments

Dave - Overall I was impressed with the Bengal Cuisine. I particularly liked the sauce with the "traditional" chicken curry and the nan bread was also a highlight. Marked down for the lack of draught Carlsberg and the cheap throwaway hot towels but overall I would expect a top six placing (hopefully sixth behind the Herb and Spice!).

John - After the disappointing Herb and Spice, the buzzy atmosphere of the Bengal Cuisine was a welcome change. A choice of draught Indian beers too! The King Prawn Purree was more purree than prawn but the Balti Chicken Jalfrezi portion was generous and very tasty. Next time we visit I think that we should put Griff behind the pillar, which would increase the ambiance score even more!

Graeme - A big improvement on our previous visit nearly 4 years ago. The place has been refurbished and it is now on a par with the other Brick Lane restaurants (rather than the toilet it was previously). I found the decoration a bit uninspiring (plain walls and a bare wooden floor) but it was reasonably smart. The food was good and, at £20 per head (after discount), so was the VFM. I marked down the service as the sundries were distributed rather randomly (e.g. I did not get my whole rice) and they 'forgot' the 20% discount that had been negotiated up front. 2 Indian beers on draft - marvellous! My starter (King Prawn Puree) was very good but very small. My Chicken Jalfrezi was hot and spicy but maybe a bit unsubtle - it had a bit of an edge to it. Prior to the great man's arrival, Neil provided the Griff-esque moment in the pub by failing to pick-up on the conversation and then suggesting something that had already been discussed.

Mark - I missed the pre-meal drink so was fairly fresh for the re-visit to what was previously a very poor place in 2000. The difference was amazing, décor vastly improved and the place even looked clean. Food was also very good with a pleasant mixed Kebab starter followed by a generous portion of very mild Chicken Sag. Only down-point was Pilau rice that had peas. 2 draught beers made us feel very welcome. Is Griff able to edit our comments as he does not want Sylvi hearing about his dubious internet searches? Horatio Nelson was NOT a Norwich City fan.

Brian - A good meal - this place has obviously improved since the last visit. Waiters were friendly and co-operative, and they had no problem shunting the tables around to accommodate a larger than average Curry Club contingent. Draft Indian lager was fine, mixed starter was very good and the lamb in my main course was both plentiful and very tender. Interesting discussions around football trivia and mackerel (who thinks these up, and why?!).

Neil - Well its not known as the worst curry house in Brick Lane for nothing. Terrible main course and very average elsewhere. On the plus side the music and decor are certainly better than on our last visit. Interesting to see that the overly ample toilet role contingency is no longer required. The 20% discount and free poppadoms were gratefully received making the final price per head just about acceptable for such a low standard of cuisine. Not impressed!

Jon - The only thing I can find to complain about is that the Shami was crossed out in the description of the mixed kebab starter, and I do like a good Shami! Otherwise, it was an excellent meal and a jolly good evening to boot. My vindaloo was hot and tasty with very tender chicken, the veg was all good and the keema nan excellent. This one seems certain to make the top six leaving the H&S on the brink. Griff made a specific point about not mentioning his ex-girlfriends in the comment, but as I missed the July outing, I’m not sure why but he’s obviously got something to hide.

Richard - A sound performance: quick service, draft Cobra, generous helpings, 20% off with free popadums. The mixed grill starter was sizeable, and the chicken Makhni (?) was particularly tasty. Ambiance was improved by putting a pillar between Brian and everyone else. It was disappointing to see so many people leave most of their 2nd beer (Diggers!).

Robin - This place must have significantly improved since the first club visit. The king prawn puri starter was quite tasty but disappointingly small, the chicken balti madras was on the warm side but not particularly spicy (and it didn't half fight back in the morning), and the special rice portion was very generous but undistinguished. The VFM mark was helped by the kindly tout's offer of a 20% discount, but I marked down the otherwise extremely good service because they "forgot" to take the 20% off until reminded.

Jeff - A very amusing opening with the chair negotiating discounts in the street on a place we were intent on visiting anyway. They didn't look too pleased inside to see 10 of us, but we settled ourselves in ok in the end. Service was quick (although the popadoms could have come earlier), and as far as I know everyone got what they ordered, and all at the same time. I've seen more extensive menus, but the food and drink were reasonably priced. My samosas were tasty but quite small, the Chicken Biryani was very good, and the accompanying vegetable curry was OK. As a place it was totally ordinary, nothing memorable at all, and that's my main criticism. But quite good food, at a very reasonable price.

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