Shalimar, Waterlooville | Takeaway review
Even in pre-pandemic times, there are few little luxuries quite so eagerly anticipated at the end of a work day than a decent curry in front of the telly.
Feet up, something watchable on Netflix, and an entirely gluttonous amount of grub – bliss.
If your takeaway of choice is Indian cuisine and you live close to the Shalimar on Hambledon Parade, there’s a decent chance you’ve already sampled its fare.
It’s got a great reputation and for very good reason.
In ‘normal’ times, you could book a table and enjoy your food inside the restaurant, which is only a couple of minutes from Waterlooville town centre by car.
Until those days return, however, the Shalimar is running a takeaway service so that curry lovers can enjoy their vindaloo, masala or madras in the safety of their own homes.
Your Dish Detective and their companion decided to see if the Shalimar’s food lives up to the local hype.
We took to the online menu to select a mixture of reliable classics and some new-to-us flavours.
Daydreaming of curry, we order for pick-up later in the evening.
The food is piping hot and ready on time when I don my mask and enter the Shalimar’s signposted waiting area.
We dish it out between the three of us so we can each taste every delicious dish.
There’s definitely more than enough to go round.
Although only one in our party is a vegetarian, we decided to explore the veggie options the menu had to offer.
Luckily there was plenty of choice.
All the ‘old favourite’ curries – from korma to patia – can be served up with vegetables rather than meat, and the same goes for the tandoori and balti dishes so vegetarians are well catered for.
One of the curries we opted for was the kashmir (£4.90 with vegetables).
It’s a creamy, fruity dish – lychee, I think? – which is fragrant without being overpowering.
The dupiaza (£4.90 with vegetables) is hearty and warm, heavy on the onions and flavoured with green peppers.
Both curries are wonderfully filling and have distinct, interesting flavours.
If you’re after something with a bit more of a protein punch, fear not.
Both of these curries can be made with chicken, lamb, prawn or king prawn.
Accompanied by an almond-crumbled peshwari naan (£2.50) and the ever-reliable onion bhaji (£2.90 for four), the meal was made complete by the mushroom rice.
This was an unexpectedly stand-out dish with tiny fried mushroom slices and a delicious herby flavour.
I actually went back for seconds of this dish on its own.
Not quite able to remember the difference between sag aloo (£3.20) and sag paneer (£3.20), we order a portion of each (to be on the safe side, of course).
Both are spinach-based but where one includes cheese, the other features potato.
Both are tasty but too similar to really contribute any variety when added to the same meal.
I’d probably substitute one for the brinjal bhaji next time.
Overall, Shalimar offers decent portions and decent prices.
The staff should especially be commended on how wonderfully friendly and helpful they were both over the phone and in person.
They were particularly great in soothing any allergy concerns about the order.
Shalimar is still as good as they say and lives up to its reputation.
I highly recommend you peruse their menu.
Maybe treat yourself to an old favourite or have a flutter on a new taste.
I’m keen to get back and try what else the restaurant has to offer.
Tel: (023) 9225 1565