Trinity Square, Nottingham
It’s Boxing Day and we’re both suffering from the after-effects of eating way too much in too short a time – a wonderful problem to have in such harsh times, but not one that is conducive to going out for dinner. But going out we are for a big family nosh-up and, happily, the chosen venue is Tamatanga, an upmarket curry joint in Nottingham city centre. After a glass or two of Cobra, I can detect a small part of my insides that isn’t totally stuffed – but still it seems wise to share a thali rather than having one each, which, I have to say, is probably a first for us.
A word or two about the venue. It’s a lively, vibrant dining place, pretty much open plan with an upstairs section to handle any overspill, and the staff are very attentive. A lot of restaurants go to pieces when the demand is high, but this place seems to be run with absolute precision, so we don’t have to wait very long for the thali, which arrives looking absolutely splendid (see picture). I love this kind of dining when you get lots of different flavours to try. The Tamatanga Thali comes with a choice of two curries – we choose Butter Chicken (rich, creamy and succulent) and, perhaps the star of the show, a Balchao Prawn Curry, fragrant with fresh coriander in a coconut finished sauce. There are also generously sized portions of Bombay Potatoes, Bhindi Do Piaza (okra with caramelised onions), daal, chutney, a delightfully fluffy naan bread and several poppadums. Our flagging appetites are revived enough to prompt us to order another naan to mop up the last of these mouth-watering juices, and we resolve that we will come again, when we have eaten less beforehand.
Around the table we see plenty of other colourful options – fabulous birianis, spicy salad bowls, and there’s a wide range available for the vegetarians in our group. Would we recommend Tamatanga? Yes, for sure. This is classy Asian food, superbly cooked and beautifully presented.