I LOVE indian food and make it my business to seek out good restaurants whenever I am travelling. It has to be said that I have been bitterly disappointed on many occasion. Not last night though when a friend introduced me to 'The Spice Inn' in Rainhill.
To say that my hopes were not high is an understatement, particularly as she told me it was located at the back of a pub. I was expecting the standard Balti house fare of Kormas, Madras's and Vindaloos served up with an extra ladle of ghee! I am delighted to report that that couldn't be further from the truth.
Rainhill has an absolute gem here. The menu is original and imaginative. We chose 'Jalapeno Chicken' and 'Mango Salsa' (chicken cooked with garlic, ginger and chilli and topped with slices of fresh mango) from the 'Signature Dishes' list but the menu also features more traditional choices such as Jalfrezi and Bhuna. Our side dish of Tarka Dhall was the best I have ever tasted (so often it is watery, yellow and tasteless). The whole experience was enhanced by the charming service and the knowledge and enthusiasm of the owner.
If you live in the area or happen to be visiting nearby, I can't recommend 'The Spice Inn' highly enough. Will definitely return and though we didn't try the pub last night, I am reliably informed that that too punches above its weight so will include that next visit.
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