Tuesday, 3 January 2012

AGM - Zouk


Another year and another AGM has now passed.  The masses spoke and aired their views, through the medium of a Facebook poll, and Zouk was chosen as the venue to eat Bradford Curry in, in the yearly celebration of the Bradford Curry Club.

I for one was pleased with the choice – Zouk was last visited by the group as a whole in the summer of 2009, and was very well received, but how would it stack up now?  Many restaurants have been visited and many curries eaten in the intervening time – can it still cut the mustard?

Not only have many restaurants been visited, and many curries eaten, but some big changes have taken place within the ranks of the Bradford Curry Club – namely babies.  Last time we dined at Zouk, as a group at least, we were all young, free and single – not really – but so to speak.

Baby herding
In a nutshell, our visit to Zouk in 2009 was a Cobra fuelled curry eating frenzy of the highest order.  It was a Rock ’n’ Roll night out of the magnitude never then or since witnessed in a curry house.  By contrast our recent AGM at Zouk was a far more sedate, but equally enjoyable, basic baby herding exercise.  To their credit, the staff at Zouk were very accommodating, and seemed suitably un-phased by four toddlers/small children running amok around their rear restaurant area.

Lamb Rogan Josh and Garlic Naan
The food was excellent.  My Seekh kebab was wonderfully moist, with the flavour of the grill permeating every mouthful.  Zouk’s open kitchen is a wonderful place to spend a few moments observing the chef’s taming the mighty tandoor and open grills.  My main of Lamb Rogan Josh was spotted on the specials board.  It comprised a much reduced sauce that was strong in flavour, but a little oily.  The meat quota was high, melt in the mouth, and with the addition of the slight disintegration of the meat aiding in the thick and rich nature of the dish.  This dish was, however, £9.95, and I bet must be one of the most expensive ‘standard curries’ available in Bradford.  It was good – I’ll give you that – but perhaps not quite £10 good. 

Elsewhere on the table, the highlight - perhaps a little unexpectedly for me - was the Paya (trotters).  I say ‘unexpectedly’, not for any other reason other than my rather squeamish narrow minded view of rough cuts and offal in general.  However, although the meat did seem nothing more than bones, gristle and fat – and definitely not for me – the dish was presented in the very authentic style with thin but dark gravy, strong with the flavour of ginger.
 
I am pleased to say that Zouk is still very good as far as I am concerned, and the overall dining experience makes it one of the top Bradford Venues.
Zouk Tea Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon