I do not know what has happened to Tayyabs, maybe it was just a one off or maybe this is how a stalwart has lost its magic and sadly gone downhill.
I must be the only person in London who has never actually had to queue up to get a table here.
As we entered the restaurant the warmth met our poor freezing bodies and I was content to stand under the heater for a while. Sadly this wasn’t to be as we were shown our table more or less straight away.
Newly printed and vinyl menus were laid on our table with some papadums and chutneys. I like that these are offered free of charge, no the norm in most Indian restaurants.
The chutneys I have to admit though were not very good. The obligatory mango chutney was as if it had been passed through a chinoise and it lacked any real depth of flavour.
The raita was ok, nicely seasoned. The other I am not sure what it was. I only tried it once as it left a not to nice taste in my mouth.
As always with Tayyabs you have to have the lamb chops. I’ve not had better anywhere in London and one day I promised myself just to eat about 10 plates of them just for me.
This visit however, they were of a particular bad quality. I am used to the meat falling off the bone, this time it was actually chewy. What happened. Had they not marinated them long enough, was it low quality meat or had the chef really not given a fuck that day and couldn’t be arsed to do them properly.
I was gutted. It was like going to a Michelin starred restaurant and being served a burger still in its golden arched wrapper. They had slapped me in the face and called me Shirley.
Our mains of a Karahi Ghost (lamb), saag allo and my old favourite Keema Naan. All were good except the saag allo, the spinach was very grainy and had an odd texture to it. The lamb was melt in the mouth soft and the gravy had a piquancy to it. Still good.
I’m glad we never ordered more, as the tables seemed to have shrunk in size and were more or less attaché to the tables adjacent. We were more or less eating off our neighbour’s plates.
I also noticed the service was a tad quicker now. All the waiters running around handing out menus, taking orders, delivering food, clearing tables, putting bills in front of you, dispensing change and waving goodbye to you as you left.
I felt as if we had just been in a revolving restaurant, as we walked out it felt like we had just walked in.
Was this just me or has Tayyabs changed. Are they trying to keep to how they have always been, but now employing a more business like mentality, in, out, in, out, eat, pay, leave.
I’m really hoping this was just a one off, but I’ve heard rumours that this is how it is now. A shame as those lamb chops were always so bloody good.