Location: Inglewood, Beaufort St opposite IGA
I received another deal from Dimmi with 50% off the food bill for Saffron Indian Restaurant. I haven’t visited Saffron before but I’ve heard of the restaurant and a few people at work have recommended it. With 50% off, it’s hard to go past so I made a booking and met the family there after work for dinner. Walking in, I was the first in on a Monday evening and I was greeted and taken to my table. The interior is very pleasant and well lit and we were provided excellent service by a lovely lady. We were brought water and offered drinks and then brought a basket of 5 Pappadums once our orders had been taken. After a thorough inspection of the menu we ordered the following 3 entrees:
$21.50 Chef’s Platter (2 pieces each) – A selection of Samosa, Onion Bhaji, Seekh Kebabs, Chicken Tikka and Shaji Jinga. I was impressed with the serving which was generous. There’s heaps of onion bhaji on the plate which is really surprising as most Indian restaurants give a small serve for what is onion deep fried in a spiced batter. Plenty for everyone, we divvied up the contents to share amongst ourselves. I really enjoyed the onion bhaji which had an excellent spice and flavour. The samosa was standard, but the Seekh kebab had a lovely flavour, more so than that served at Spicy Affair. The chicken tikka was very moist and tender but lacked the typical flavour that is signature to a tikka. Still, very tasty.
$12.50 Tandoori Chicken – Moist chicken quarters, marinated and cooked in tandoor oven. Exquisite and famous throughout the world. You can’t go past tandoori chicken so we ordered a separate serve since it didn’t appear on the chef’s platter. Large pieces which were super moist and tender, but unfortunately lacked that typical oven smoked flavour and spice one would expect from a tandoori chicken. The dish was delicious but not representative of a typical tandoori chicken.
$14.90 Shahi Prawns (6 pcs) – Crispy fried juicy king prawns marinated in the chef’s special recipe. Mum loving prawns suggested a serve of Shahi Prawns which went down very well. The prawns were perfectly cooked, juicy and moist without being rubbery. The crisp batter was delicious but not much spice flavour in the meal. I haven’t really eaten a spiced batter which has a strong discernable spice taste at any restaurant thus far. Still, I love anything deep fried and I loved the prawns, of which there were also 2 in the chef’s platter (I think instead of Shahi Jinga – whatever that is).
We were already feeling pretty full with the entrees but it was on to the mains. We ordered a serve of plain rice ($5) which serves 2 but was very generous compared to what we normally see at Indian restaurants, garlic naan ($4.50), plain naan ($3.50), and a roti ($3.50) as breads to eat with our mains:
$21.50 Butter Chicken - Boneless chicken pieces, marinated in ginger and garlic, cooked in tandoor oven. My favourite so we had to order this dish. The butter chicken was delicious but not as good as I’ve had before. There’s plenty of tender chicken and the thick creamy tomato sauce was so enjoyable.
$19.90 Lamb Bhuna Masala - Diced tender lamb with aromatic traditional Indian spices and thick sauce with fine touch of tomato and onions. Plenty of tender lamb with a lovely rich dark coloured curry which was very tasty.
$23.50 Fish Goan Curry - Tender fish fillets simmered into a thick sauce blended With lemon juice, mustard seeds, coconut with a touch of crushed dried chillies. Like the other curries, plenty of tender fish with a lovely creamy sauce. I found the curry to have quite a strong “fish” taste and preferred Spicy Affair’s version better.
$16.50 Malai Kofta - Hand made vegetarian balls made from potato, home made cheese and chickpea flour. Cooked in a cashew nut curry sauce. Vegetarian’s delight. We had this dish also at Spicy Affair and this was just as tasty. There are 4 largish “cakes” which have a soft blend of spices and potato bound with chickpea flour and fried before being immersed in a lovely sweetish tomato sauce, akin to a butter chicken.
The roti was tasty but was a little dry. We found Spicy Affair’s to be superior. There was plenty of rice with loose grains to sop up all that lovely curry. I must comment that the proteins in each of the dishes, including the entrees, were perfectly cooked. They were tender and moist.
Well after all that we were stuffed but there’s still room for dessert, except for me. I did have a little of the mango kulfi $6 (it’s an Indian ice cream made with almonds and pistachio) which I found really tasty and I also had half of the gulab jamun $4.50 (akin to a sweet dumpling that’s fried) which was also really good.
We also decided to order a few take away dishes (doesn’t include the 50% as that’s for dine in only + take away prices are cheaper):
$13.90 Palak Paneer - Traditionally prepared home made cheese cubes cooked in a rich, spiced English spinach sauce. I did have a little of this and the cheese was soft and flavoursome in the curry. Pretty good.
$13.50 Chicken Biryani (x2) - Basmati rice cooked with specially marinated chicken and other herbs in combination with traditional Indian spices. (serves two). For a biryani, this was disappointing in terms of it didn’t taste anything like a biryani. The rice was more like a pilaf which was very flavoursome and there was several chunks of chicken. The dish is tasty but short of what a biryani should taste like.
$15.90 Lamb Vindaloo - A goan speciality combining potato, cooked in hot Spicy sauce and vinegar. (chef’s special vindaloo sauce). Supposed to be hot but I didn’t find it all that hot. It was tasty with plenty of tender lamb and thick rich flavoursome curry.
$15.90 Chicken Mumtaz - Boneless chicken cooked in a thick, creamy curry with mint and spices. I had a little of this and it tasted similar to butter chicken. As with all the other curries, plenty of tender chicken that is well cooked, immersed in plenty of curry carrying lots of flavour.
Saffron Indian Restaurant Food Review Summary
Verdict: Well we must have ordered just about everything off the menu at Saffron! I can certainly say we ate a variety of dishes both at the restaurant and as take away over the coming days. Our dine in bill was $90 after the discount and includes drinks while the takeaway order was $72 for the 5 dishes, so it works out to excellent value, especially with the discount. The dishes are consistent, generous in serving, contain ample proteins which are perfectly cooked, and are all immersed in a flavoursome curry. I really enjoyed the chef’s platter amongst our entrees, and it’s hard to go past the butter chicken. The curries are generally on the mild side but each dish does have a “heat” indication and some dishes have a little bite but nothing that will blow your head off. However, while the dishes were delicious and certainly not lacking in flavour, some of the dishes were not representative of the what flavours the dish should represent, such as the tandoori chicken and biryani. A dinner at Saffron’s will not disappoint. The setting is smart and modern and you will receive excellent service, generous servings with excellent flavours. I certainly enjoyed my meal there and the take away food as well.
Saffron Indian Restaurant Details
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