Jhinga Achari Butterfly king prawns marinated with pickled spices, chargrilled

Madhu’s Sheraton – Fine Dining Indian Grills

As the notorious Indian restaurant located in Southall, West London, Madhu’s has built up its distinguished status during a 33 year history.   My family are Madhu’s regulars, returning time and time again for the reliable, tasty and flavourful meat and curries.  Now, the owners have opened a second restaurant at the Sheraton Skyline Hotel at Heathrow.

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The vast dining space is able to handle about 130 covers (without tables being too close together), and there are also 2 Chivas Regal themed semi-private dining rooms. At one end of the restaurant you’ll find an open plan kitchen complete with robata grills – and it’s grilled dishes in particular that Madhu’s put a specific emphasis on in this second branch.   Decor-wise, they’re going for a chic and sleek look, a far cry from the original in Southall.   I guess you could say this is the ‘fine dining’ version of the Southall restaurant.

With the menu split neatly between Robata dishes, Classic Appetisers & Main Courses it’s more concise than you’ll find at the Southall branch.   Upon opening, the first page hits you with a comprehensive list of tastebud teasing grill dishes from the robata – bear in mind it’s meat & seafood heavy with just 2 vegetarian options on this page out of the 14 on offer.  As a non-veg, I felt pretty spoilt for choice and didn’t want to miss out on any.

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It was 9pm on a Friday evening and i was ravenous.  To my delight, immediately after being seated the waiter delivered us a selection of mini poppadoms (in 3 varieties) along with 3 chutneys for dipping and i enthusiastically proceeded to tuck into them.  I soon realised how moorish they were and spent the next 30 mins trying my utmost to save some for others at the table.  N.B. The mint chutney is really fantastic, with the mango one coming a close second.

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We ordered 7 of the grill dishes and overall, I was quite impressed. You get the hint of charcoal from the grill and the meat and seafood was pretty much cooked to perfection.  Presentation is attractive, with grills served neatly on sleek black slates and my mouth literally began watering as they started to arrive at the table.

Even if you’re a meat lover, i’d highly recommend not missing out on the Aloo Tikiki and Tandoori Paneer.  These are my 2 all-time favourite vegetarian dishes at Madhu’s and they’re both excellent.  Aloo Tikki is basically a spiced potato patty stuffed with fresh green peas, and served with a chick pea curry, yoghurt and tamarind chutney and in my opinion, Madhu’s do one of the best ones around.  Then there’s the tandoori paneer – the softest most wonderfully flavoured homemade paneer I’ve had and something I never fail to order at Madhu’s.

Since we were pretty full up from starters, we didn’t order many main dishes – good job too because in comparison to the starters, the mains were a bit of a let down.  For the price you pay, they’re small in size and considering the high standard of the mains at the Southall restaurant, I was disappointed.

We wouldn’t normally order biryani, but thought we’d give the chicken one a go on this night for a bit of a change, however it was nothing special and the ingredients were just not cohesive enough for my liking – i’d expected more.

Chicken Biryani

Chicken Biryani

It’s very rare to see Roomali Roti on the menu at an Indian restaurant outside of India, so our eyes lit up when we saw Madhu’s were offering this.  However, when it arrived, it was not nearly as thin as it should traditionally be made, like we’ve had in India.
I must admit, i did find the food here to be less spicy than at the Southall Madhu’s (to my dismay) – now it’s no secret that Indian diners can generally handle more spice, so I can only assume that the owners are trying to cater to a wider crowd at this second location and hence have toned down the spiciness a tad bit.

For dessert, don’t miss the Kulfi which is homemade and boasts great flavour and a wonderful creamines – it’s brilliant and i can’t recall having had a better one than at Madhus.  Although having said that, to my surprise the highlight dessert for me on this occasion was the Mango Kheer – it was absolutely delicious. I could have easily devoured another serving if it wasn’t for my guilty conscious getting in the way.

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Service is attentive, but I also found it a little annoying on one or two occasions – they ask you how the food is a LOT, and I would have preferred them to leave us to it a little more.  Nevertheless, if I return, I’ll be going for the food and nothing else.

I wouldn’t go expecting a super cheap Indian meal – grill dishes range from £7-£16 while main courses are priced at £11-£14. You’re probably looking at around £30-40 a head depending on drinks etc.

Dips Bites: Food at Madhu’s Sheraton is pricier than at the Southall restaurant, but you’re basically paying for better quality, superior  presentation and a nicer ambience.  I really enjoyed the robata grill dishes, but still think the Southall branch does a better main course.  Next time, I’d probably just order grills & desserts.  P.S. Don’t make the mistake i did and pay for parking in the hotel car park – it’s complimentary when you’re dining at Madhus Sheraton. 

http://madhus.co.uk/redirect.php?referer=www.sheratonskyline.com
Sheraton Skyline Hotel, Bath Road, Hayes, UB3 5BP 

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