Best Of The BYOs: Le Taj

By Lindsey Last edited 159 months ago
Best Of The BYOs: Le Taj

Our photography doesn't do the sheek kebab justice so we grabbed this exterior shot off Flickr from austinainsley89 who also agrees that this place rocks.
Eat your way through the credit crunch - bring your own booze! £5 bottles of wine in hand we bring you our guide to the best of the BYOs.

The outfit: Le Taj, 96 Brick Lane, E1

The hours of business: Daily - lunch: 12h to 14:30 dinner 17:30 to 24h

The bottom-line: Formidable Bangladeshi cuisine in a light airy restaurant. The bathroom fittings in the ladies could be better affixed but that's truly our only criticism.

The local market: We once thought we'd try somewhere new each time we went to Brick Lane for a curry, given the bounty of choice, but ever since we wandered into Le Taj, we've not been able to go anywhere else. Standing out from its neighbours by virtue of its contemporary look and its lack of curry pimp (it doesn't need one), Le Taj hasn't disappointed yet (three recent visits down, plenty more to come).

The bread, chips and gravy: You'll be offered two menus by one waiter as the other discreetly uncorks your wine and settles you in. Why bother with the Indian, when you can cut straight to the Bengali, where their 'artist-chef' feels most at home? After classy papadums, accompanied by simple mint sauce, pickle and onions we delved into the 'Spice Pearls'; a "panorama" of chef's finest starters. Delicately fried aubergine slices melted on the tongue, a crisp onion bhaji was carefully cut into three and sighed over. Tantalising morsels of chicken tikka made us hungry for our meat centered mains and our shared sheek kebab - the yardstick of choice when on the curry buzz - satisfied, being light and spicy and laced with yoghurt and lemon. Two of us went for the Achari Gosht with lime rice, the succulent lamb steeped in a pickly, citrussy, spicy sauce while the other plumped for Shatkora Murgh, continuing the citrus theme but this time with chicken and a more tomatoey spice, mushroom rice on the side and a naan bread to share. There was nothing for the doggy bag . Not a scrap.

A capital choice for: Excellent, reasonable, friendly, classy Bangladeshi food. A winning recommendation for Brick Lane if you're not of the random restaurant picking variety.

The damage: £53.00 between three of us, not including service (we tipped generously, very fat and happy). No corkage.

Check our our previous BYOs and leave your suggestions for bestests in the comments.

Last Updated 13 May 2009