Taj Mahal

High Street, Doncaster

Visited: Sunday 3rd June 2001, 8pm

Review by Jeff Davies

Category Marks
Food 6/10
Service 4/10
Value 5/10

The crux of any review is if we recommend the restaurant or not. I tend to think along the lines of "would I take a new girlfriend there".

My answer to this question for the Taj Mahal is - no.

The starters were all good, however if the happy hour promotion had not been on then they would have made the meal a lot more expensive. The service was poor - the chicken dopiaza arriving as a vegetable dish. Not once did they ask if the meal was ok. Neither did they ask if we wanted another drink. The breads were forgotten, having to be asked for and were only just an acceptable average in terms of quality.

If we had wanted popadoms we would have ordered them. Why ask if we want rice when we had ordered a biryani dish to share? If an establishment is going to run special offers then they should not try overly hard to claw the lost revenue back by introducing unwanted extras!

CL said the chicken dopiaza was good, and that it contained a reasonable quantity of fresh onions.

Phil C said that the vegetable biryani had good fragrant rice and a good mix of vegetables. The chicken bhuna also had decent vegetable content. Unfortunately the chicken, though breast meat, was rather tasteless. The main problem in both cases was the sauce - surface hot, unexciting, and with no chilli sensation. Basically, the ingredients were not fresh enough.

Personally I thought the bhuna and dopiaza had both come from a common pot. Yes, there were more onions in the dopiaza but both lacked real quality. The vegetable biryani was far too sweet for my liking; I don't believe I could have finished a full dish. Yes, it contained a number of veg but these appeared to have come from a frozen mixed veg pack and was packed out with a high amount of potatoes.

Other factors that influence my decision not to recommend this establishment are the excessive music levels, the overly subdued lighting, the lack of attentiveness from the staff and the lack of imagination in the desserts section of the menu.

The offer is a free starter and half price drinks Sun - Thurs

Dish Price (£) Marks Consumer
chicken dopiaza 4.90 7/10 Cactus Lizard
vegetable biryani 4.95 5/10 Jeff D
chicken bhuna 4.90 6/10 Jeff D
vegetable biryani 4.95 7/10 Phil C
chicken bhuna 4.90 6/10 Phil C

mixed starter 2.95, chicken shashlick 2.95, plain nan 1.70, tandoori roti 1.00.