Redfort Gardens – Sawston (2010)

After running out of curry houses to try in Cambridge, I have decided to venture out into the villages in desperate need of a new fix.
I wrongly assumed that Indians further out of town would be lower quality and cost more than the center of Cambridge. Luckily, I have been pleasantly surprised with some of the quality I have found in the area. Tamarind in Teversham, The Curry Palace in Cottenham, Zara in Great Shelford, and Vujon in Harston, all being fine establishments and in most cases being much better than its rivals in the city.
Today I tried the Redfort Gardens in Sawston. From the outside, it appears as a small run down place which is easily missed by the busy high street with shops and pubs next door. Behind, is a good parking area, which is just as well seeing as nobody really fancies catching the bus to Sawston for a curry. Once you go in you notice it’s a mix between Indian decoration in an old English cottage building. Quite unusual but quite nice. Sadly like the outside looks like they have not spent much time or money looking after the building. I also noticed the ceiling was dirty.
The service was fast and friendly. We got our poppadoms in a flash. I could hear them in the kitchen next to me cutting the onions fresh which is very reassuring, though did result in the onions being cut slightly too large to use well with poppadoms! We were also handed a FREE complimentary onion bhaji each! They were slightly over done so I am not too sure if they just wanted to get rid of them or if this was standard service!
While looking at the menu I noticed one of several things. First, the beer is £4 a pint! Unacceptable. The menu was quite expensive too, which was disappointing.
Second, they had a large menu with some quite unusual things. One being that they had Phal on the menu which is always good to see but also that they do a “chicken tikka vindaloo”. Which is something I have never noticed in a curry house until now. I’m sure it is available frequently in London but it was certainly something I had to try. Combining England’s most popular dish the chicken tikka with the country’s hottest dish the vindaloo? Sensational!
The rice came out in a large portion which was good to see considering it cost £3!
The curry was presented really well, with onions, peppers and herbs sprinkled on top! Making it colourful and exciting. The curry itself was delicious. The chicken tasted very smokey as you would expect from a tikka. Combining the incredible flavour and texture of the chicken tikka with the hot fiery flavour of a vindaloo has to be an award winning combination.
To my delight the curry was very hot and even gave me the hiccups (which is always a sign of a hot curry with me lol)!
When our meal was finished we were given a shot of baileys (or something similar) each in a well presented shot glass alongside a slice of water melon. We also received an ‘After 8’ mint. Considering this was all on the house with the onion bhaji’s I mentioned earlier, I consider it average value for money because it was still expensive.
I ended up paying about an extra £5 more than i should for the meal in total for two people. The bill came to about £30 when usually for the same meal in this area the average is about £25. If you can overlook how run down the place looks then you will be impressed with this place. You’re paying for quality here and getting large portions.
The service was fast and friendly and we both left with a belly full of fire! I will definitely be coming back here!
A hidden gem and a place of contrast.
3.5 out of 5.

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