The latest restaurant to occupy the site previously filled by Lui’s and then Feast in Montagu Street, Kettering, is Everest Dine.
Everest Dine has a well-established, award-winning restaurant in Leicester and opened the branch in Kettering a few weeks ago.
The restaurant has had a stylish makeover and looks inviting when you first walk in. It is a big space to fill and could perhaps feel a bit lacking in atmosphere on a quiet night, but the night we went there were enough other diners to give the place a nice buzz.
The restaurant calls itself a fine dining Nepalese and Indian restaurant and the menu has dishes that anyone who has dined in an Indian restaurant will recognise, as well as some that are perhaps a bit more unfamiliar.
The more familiar starters include king prawn puri (£6.95) and mixed bhaji (£3.95), while the less familiar include haggis pakora, which is described as sheep’s heart, liver, lungs and onion, suet, oatmeal and spices cooked and battered and served with creamy tomato and tamarind chutney (£4.95).
There is also the delicious sounding Momo, a steamed lamb or vegetable dumpling served with tomato chutney (£5.95). The dumplings take 20 minutes to cook and I was ravenous so went for the smoked haddock tikki (£6.95). This was diced smoked haddock mixed with crushed potatoes, toasted cumin and fresh herbs and served with roasted tomato chutney. It was delicately spiced and very tasty.
My husband decided to try the Everest mushroom special, which is fresh mushrooms stuffed with minced lamb, garlic, ginger and herbs and served with home-made tamarind chutney (£4.95).
The home-made chutney really lifted the dish and although Ade enjoyed it, having tried a mouthful I decided I preferred my starter.
The chef’s recommendations of Nepalese dishes for main course included Hariyali lamb, which is lamb cooked with fresh mint, spring onions and Nepalese spices (£9.95), and chicken Nepal, barbecued chicken cooked with mango in a mild sauce (£8.95).
There are also special platters including Everest vegetable mela – a combination of potatoes, green peas, aubergine, paneer and mushrooms cooked with mixed spices and a touch of cream and served with saffron flavoured pilau rice (£9.95).
The menu also features the usual curry, tandoori and biryani dishes.
Ade decided to choose the Nepalese Hansh Bhutuwa, which is marinated breast of duck cooked with green herbs, spices and spring onion (£10.95) and I went for another Nepalese speciality, Macha Modi Khola (£9.95) – marinated white fish cooked with special Nepalese spices, mustard, ginger, fresh herbs and yogurt. The menu describes it as fairly hot, and the waiter warned me it was hot when I ordered, but in fact I found it just on the right side of spicy.
We also shared a tarka dal (£3.93), a plain rice (£2.25) and a home-made tandoori roti (£1.95).
The starters were definitely the stars of the meal, and we both felt the main courses lacked a bit of punch. They were both a little understated, although the side order of dal was delicious.
I hate food that blows the roof of your mouth off, but both the duck and the fish dishes could have done with a touch more spice for our palates.
Having said that, we would certainly like to go back as there are plenty of things on the menu that sound a little out of the ordinary and the restaurant has a sophisticated look without charging top-end prices.
The meals are all beautifully presented, tasted very fresh and were served by attentive, friendly staff.
If you like your Indian food on the more mellow side this is definitely the place for you.
34-36 Montagu Street
Value for money: Excellent
Food: Beautifully fresh
Disabled access: Good
Parking: None outside
TOTAL COST: £44.45
STAR RATING: 7/10