We were all excited for our evening at Shapla- and with the establishment already having such a great reputation in the local community; we certainly had high expectations! Mr Ali and his team went above and beyond to ensure we had a great night.
We arrived just after 6pm and were seated near the window looking out over the busy Ridgeway. Mr Ali took our drinks order and brought over our Appetisers, crispy poppadoms and a selection of dips- the tangy mango chutney was my personal favourite. He tells us that the purpose of this pre-dinner taster is to cleanse your palette before the main event!
The atmosphere in the restaurant itself is clean, cosy and welcoming. Mr Ali and his dedicated staff are on hand for anything you might need and it’s clear to see that they treat everyone who walks through the door as friends.
We were recommended to try the mixed platter as a starter- which consisted of lamb, chicken and pakora cooked in different herbs and spices, accompanied by a side salad and crispy vegetable samosas. Everything was presented beautifully and the smell as it approached your table made your mouth water.
Moving onto our mains- Emily, our sales manager and Tom, our Graphic Designer are fans of spicy food, myself? Not so much. I am a classic Korma, Tikka Masala at a push! One thing we can all say with confidence is that the team at Shapla certainly know their stuff- and can give you honest recommendations based on your taste. Mr Ali suggested I try the Darjeeling Chicken, cooked with extra onions, green peppers, plum tomato and garlic- but with less spice!
Shapla Balti will happily personalise each dish to suit your taste- making it more or less spicy depending on your preference.
Between us we sampled the Darjeeling Chicken, the Lamb Tikka, Chicken Jalfrezi and the Shapla Special Biryani. The portion sizes are extremely generous for the fair price, and the naan breads are amazing. We tried both the garlic and peshwari naan- they were so good we went back for more.
The food was bursting with herbs and spices, with just the right amount of heat in everybody’s dish. We all agreed that it was genuinely the nicest Indian food we have had in a long time.
Not to be defeated, we took a look at the dessert menu. A great range of choices from creamy and light coconut ice cream served in a real coconut- to rich Forrero Rocher ice cream drizzled with chocolate sauce. Emily went for the chocolate bomb cake, layers of chocolate and vanilla ice cream coupled with chocolate and vanilla sponge- delicious!
Shapla Balti were finalists in the British Curry Awards in 2017 and were awarded a Tripadvisor certificate of excellence for three years running. They are a celebrated favourite in the local community and it is clear to see why!
Mr Ali and his team take real pride in what they do, and it certainly shows.
Personally, we recommend that you make the time to dine in at Shapla- to really get the full experience, but they also offer delivery to the local area. Shapla regularly host a number of charity events and special evenings, check their website for updates.
The OM Team had a great night at Shapla.We ate so much food we left seriously needing a nap! We have all agreed that we definitely need to return, the hospitality that Mr Ali and his team showed not only us- but every customer who entered the restaurant was second to none.
It is clear that the friendly, welcoming approach from the Shapla team- along with freshly cooked traditional cuisine is what drives this business forward and keeps people coming back for more.