Quest for Best Curry Leads to Jubraj

Decor and spinach disappoint on Gunnersbury Lane

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We are currently engaged in a quest to find the best curry - eat in or take-away - in West London. As part of this quest, we thought it was time to venture to Jubraj, which possibly likes to believe it is in Ealing but is firmly within the boundaries of W3 on the Acton side of Gunnersbury Avenue.

Taking a look at the décor, it looks like something from the early '80s with a boxy mirrored panel instead of a cornice separating the walls from the ceiling. One table was taken, otherwise there was only take-out traffic to disturb the abundant plastic greenery.

We were shown to an enclave next to the loos where take-away customers wait. I found this rather discouraging. In an empty restaurant, it does no harm to allow - even very brief - customers to sit in a more appetising, less-doctor's-waiting-room-circa-1978 position. Anyway, that's a very minor quibble and they are efficient and we didn't have to wait long for our curry to arrive.

We rushed it home and attacked the onion bhajis which, though they were pleasantly flavoured, were not a good texture - they should be crispy: even allowing for a (very swift) car journey home. Papadums and pickles were fine.

Chicken Shashlick - I think my other half is researching a book entitled: 'shashlicks I have known' - was not top notch, but perfectly acceptable. Chicken Tikka Dakeshwari was cooked with mango (most probably tinned, but we didn't hold that against it) and in what is described as a 'thick creamy mild sauce'. This was a copious dish but there were no remarkable flavours discernable in the thick sauce, but then there was that mango to give it a little sweetness. Lamb Rogan was quite oily and it was hard to discern tomatoes, capsicum and onions or indeed any of the special spices and herbs. I'm sure they were there, but I'm not sure quite when they were introduced to the lamb and how much influence they had over it.

I have no idea what it was which made the Sag Bhajee (spinach) taste, well, disgusting but I managed to swallow two mouthfuls and then gave up. I suspect it had been brought back to life by frying it in something rather old, but couldn't consume enough to figure it out. Nan bread was a perfectly acceptable (as nan bread is my particular weakness) 6.5/10 experience and both Pilau and Plain Rice were of a reasonable standard.

The total bill came to £38.65 which fed four of us very adequately.

So this will stay in the 'useful menus' section, as it was definitely not the worst I've had, but I wouldn't say I'll be rushing back there as soon as Thames Water have vacated the area.


Clare Gittins

June 6, 2008