Someone with a little more flair for design than me could almost certainly knock up a nice visual illustrating locations of Cardiff curry houses while referencing the class system.
Sitting pretty on the city’s southside as the undisputed leader of the proletariat is the Vegetarian Food Studio, featured on this blog back in October. Head a few miles north to Heath, and Anand George’s aristocratic South Indian experience Mint & Mustard dominates the spice landscape.
Drop back townwards into the ever-so-slightly more urban surroundings of Roath and Cathays, and a wave of new-money upstarts can be found. The likes of Punitha’s and Mowgli’s have adopted some of M&M’s fine dining trappings, while knocking out meals that don’t dictate you eat there within seconds of being paid.
Of course, value for money isn’t just about price, so all this is only relevant if the eating is any good. I went to Mowgli’s, nestling on Crwys Road in the student heartlands, when my brother came to visit recently, and was impressed. The restaurant itself is functional rather than swank, but there’s very little wrong on the food front.
Mowgli’s Shahi Keema Momo delivered a fine version of one of my favourite dishes, minced lamb cooked with peas and flavoured with curry leaves – not too heavy or fatty and with complex spicing and just the right level of heat (though don’t expect to finish it without getting a sweat on). A platter of starters was also on the money, honey glazed paneer and excellent mixed kebabs offsetting one another well.
On this occasion I confess to breaking the Bare Grills tenner-a-head limit just slightly, but I’d have to say it was worth it.