Spice is a North Indian restaurant located in the lobby of the Chelsea Ramada Hotel in al-Barsha-1. It has a fully licensed bar, and live Indian music compliments of a small group who sit, cross-legged in the traditional fashion, on the floor of a small stage in the middle of the restaurant. I’m not a big fan of this type of music but did not feel it was obstructive. It was no doubt good as all the Indian guests seemed to be enjoying themselves. I was fascinated by their incredible stamina; they didn’t take a single break throughout the time we were there.
The food was better than we expected. My food-buddy and I were off meat that day and ordered from their impressive range of seafood and veggie dishes instead. The jumbo prawn and fish kebabs we started with were excellent, the prawns in particular were cooked al dente perfect. The same can be said for the fish curry which followed; the Hamour they used was cooked through enough to have taken on the taste of the spices and gravy yet was still firm to the bite. I loved the Bhindi Masala, although they could have used smaller Okra; the big ones they used were a little ‘stringy’, my only gripe. The original Tadka Dal they served us had been tempered using ghee which gave it a slightly peculiar taste. But it was quickly replaced with one using normal oil which was lovely and prompted the both of us to have some with the fluffy Jeera rice – the ultimate comfort food.
If there is one thing I liked most it is without doubt the service, which I found friendly and engaging from the minute we walked in. But besides being friendly it was also very efficient and fast. The evening was filled with little touches of excellence such as my asking for a pint of Hoegaarden beer, which they did not have. This did not deter our waiter who, straight off the cuff, said he would get me some from one of the other outlets in the hotel – well done.
So there you have it, if you are in the area and fancy a decent curry with a pint of beer while listening to some live Indian music then this is most definitely the place for you.