Date of visit: 24 May 2013
We initially wanted to go to the Michael Collins pub on Avenue Louise, but the place was overcrowded beyond belief. So my friend and I opted to go to an eatery nearer the Grand Place.
We stumbled upon La Maharani restaurant and decided to go in – we both like Indian food and hadn’t eaten any in Brussels.
Upon arrival I noticed that the place had no smell. It’s the first time I’ve ever entered an Indian restaurant and not smelled anything; food, spices .. no smell at all! We were greeted at the entrance by a young man who was very polite and showed us where to sit. The place was almost empty, so we had a huge choice. We were then served by an older man who probably lost the function of his smile muscles – he was a little surly to say the least. He took our drinks orders and then came back to take our meal order. I noticed he didn’t use a pen and paper to take the order, instead he memorised the lot which was impressive. My friend and I decided to purchase poppudums and a variety of starters as we like to try a variety of different things in an Indian restaurant we’ve never been to. When the poppudums came they were looked shop bought, were not fresh and were burnt. We ordered three starters:
- Chicken tikka
- Crab on a puri (it was like a crab version of prawn puri)
- Vegetable samosa
It took a long while for the starters to come and when they did, only two out of the three arrived; the crab and the samosas. The crab was really nice, but there was a huge prawn in it which shouldn’t have been there! Luckily neither of us has an allergy to prawns. The samosas were disgusting – thick dry pastry and dry tasteless filling – nothing like the light, flaky tasty samosas I’m accustomed to in the UK. When we finished the two starters, the chicken tikka turned up! I’ve had chicken tikka lots of times and they vary slightly, but essentially the premise is the same. The chicken tikka I had at this restaurant was insipid – yes, “insipid” is the only adjective I can use; small pieces of diced chicken, which were lukewarm, swimming in a runny oily coating which was trying to pass itself off as tikka! If I were the cook/chef I’d have been embarrassed to serve it. It wasn’t nice.
For our main course:
-1 large portion of pilau rice
- 1 keema naan
- 1 plain naan
- 1 chicken korma
- 1 spinach & lamb curry
The rice was not pilau, it was plain boiled basmati rice. The keema naan was not keema naan. The plain naan tasted disgusting – I could tell the flour used was the variety sold in the shops as it had an awful taste I’m familiar with. The chicken korma tasted OK. It looked as if it had been heated up in a microwave as it had a skin on it. It also lost its heat very quickly; reminiscent of something that has been microwaved. The lamb curry was OK, but not great or even good. It filled a hungry hole so to speak.
The food wasn’t good here, by UK standards, this place wouldn’t even be somewhere drunks visit on a Saturday night – it was bad!
I noticed there was no smell or noise of the kitchens in the restaurant. I’m convinced there is no kitchen there, just a small room with a microwave. The food wasn’t good and it didn’t taste freshly made.
I wouldn't go back again and I hope my review serves as a deterrent for anyone to even go in the place. Just keep walking!
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