REVIEWED: Asha’s Bollywood palace

Holly Ripley | 10th January 2019

Located on Peter’s Street, lies one of Manchester’s most innovative Indian restaurants, Asha’s.


In this Bollywood palace, authentic flavours are blended with a contemporary perspective to redefine Indian cuisine.


The journey of creator Asha Bhosle, a Bollywood icon’s humble beginnings are celebrated throughout the dining experience.


Once seated, guests are presented the menu which begins by telling the story of how Asha became inspired by the addictive aromas flooding from community kitchens. This became her early initiation into the fine art of Indian cooking.‘Real Indian food made with love, from scratch.’


I began my Indian journey with an appetiser – or two. The ‘Venison Samosa’ (£7.95) and the ‘Chingri Chaap’ (£11.50). English Country Estate venison is minced with green peas, raisins & spices, the filling is then wrapped and served in three, rather large, crispy samosas.The ‘Chingri Chaap’ consists of two King prawns, marinated in ginger, garlic and spices, rolled in breadcrumbs and fried.


As promised, both appetisers contained a tender and flavoursome filling. Generous in size, I’d recommend a selection for the table to share. Perfect to accompany drinks, or to whet your appetite before the main course.


For the main event, I ordered the ‘Muscat Gosht’ (£16.95). A gluten free dish from the ‘Creative Curries’ section of the menu. The dish consisted of boneless lamb served with whole spices in a rich and spicy gravy. The lamb was beautifully tender, and the sauce was bold and bursting with flavour.


A word to the wise – when your waiter tells you your dish is ‘quite spicy’ when ordering -believe them. Thinking to yourself, you comfortably handle a ‘Medium’ at Nando’s so you’ll be fine, probably won’t cut it.


However, if this does occur, (answering for a friend) fear not. Ask your waiter for a serving of their refreshing yoghurt topped with fresh mint and pomegranate seeds, and stir it in to your curry. It will put out the blazing fire in your mouth while still letting your palette enjoy the rich and wonderful spices of the dish.


Also ordered was the ‘Scottish Salmon Tikka’ (£16.50), also gluten free and sits in the ‘Explore The Tandori’ section of the menu.  The salmon was light, flakey and falls apart in your mouth.


To accompany the dishes, I ordered a Basmati Rice and Garlic Naan. Served separately, they’re perfect for sharing and plenty for two.


I finished the dining experience with a couple of indulgent cocktails.  First, the highly recommended ‘Manchester Tart’ (£9.00). Well, when in Manchester… The signature cocktail is unique to the Manchester restaurant and crafted from vanilla vodka, Chambord, coconut and pineapple, topped with a Prosecco and passionfruit foam. And as if that wasn’t indulgent enough, it’s served with it’s very own miniature Manchester tart.


If you’re wanting more of a refreshing finish to your meal, the ‘Delhi Devil’ (£9.00) will meet your expectations and more. Gin, fresh pomegranate and mint leaves, muddled with lime juice and lengthened with ginger beer. If you’re a mojito lover, this cocktail delivers the classic flavours with a fragrant twist.


If that wasn’t enough to tempt you into Asha’s Bollywood palace, book online now and enjoy 40% off food this January using code: ‘ASHAS40’. (T&Cs apply – Excludes Friday’s & Saturday’s. Bookings up to 6 people).


Or looking to save the magic for Valentines day? Book your table at Asha’s Manchester this Valentine’s Day and you’ll be entered into a free prize draw for a one night stay at the luxury Velvet Hotel in Manchester.

Asha’s £100 ‘Valentines Menu’ for two people includes their incredible ‘Emperor’s platter’ starring a whole tandoori lobster in its shell as a centerpiece, alongside chilli garlic prawns, venison samosa, mushroom kurkure, tandoori murg tikka & an artisan bread basket. Finish your romantic evening with their stunning dessert platter – a trio of Indian desserts at its absolute finest! Wash it all down with a bottle of fizz for the table.