Scene Indian Street Kitchen, Manchester
Because I love and trust you guys, I did a mini-poll across social media as to which restaurants you lovely, loyal readers wanted me to visit and review in Manchester. There was an astonishingly high number of votes, so thank you lots for that. With no hesistation, we booked dinner at Scene Indian Street Kitchen, which came second in popularity.
I could only manage to get a booking at 10pm on Saturday night, and although it was late, it meant our stomachs were finally ready for another meal after a heavy lunch of chicken and waffles earlier that day. Walking in, I was wowed by how vibrant and colourful the place was. Just check out this entrance:
As we walked into the main room, the place was super full, even at 10:15pm! Great, I thought, as we were handed our menus. That said, something didn’t sit right with me as soon as I saw just how much was on the menu, but we got cracking on with our order.
It was super dark in there so excuse my terrible photos!
As soon as I sipped my drink, I knew from that point what was lying in wait for me. My strawberry mojito was overtly sweet and too heavy on the strawberry syrup. BW, on the other hand, enjoyed his light elderflower mocktail.
And then, the food came.
A handful of chopped chicken breast pieces that had been dipped in batter and fried to become crispy. Chicken 65 usually has a coat of chilli garlic marinade to give it a bit of a kick, but Scene’s version seemed to be lacking even the slightest bit of spicy sauciness (try say that 5 times really quickly)!, which would have made this dish a lot better.
BW ordered this dish and what arrived was very, very different to what he had imagined. Instead of crispy prawns a la Gymkhana-style, we were given fried prawns on a stick, something you would find in a supermarket’s frozen party pack. A big miss, especially as there was a lack of spices or any aromatic flavouring on the prawns.
Puris filled with an under seasoned potato, lentil, and onion mix, and served alongside three small jugs of yoghurt, chaat water, and tamarind. This wasn’t too bad and the pomegranate seeds added a refreshing crunch, but overall, the pani puri did not make much of an impact on us.
The waiter clumsily placed a huge sizzling plate of lamb chops on the table, followed by rice and a bowl half full of tadka dahl (of which he spilt some but oh no, didn’t want to clean it up). The chops were actually not bad; they were thin, smoky, and had a nice crust on them from the tandoor, but the onions had not sweltered enough and were still quite raw. Both the dahl and the rice were abysmal and did not have much of a purpose served with the chops.
The total bill amounted to approximately £45 for two people, so around £23 each including drinks and service. Pricing wise, this wasn’t too bad and what you would expect to pay on date night at a restaurant like Scene. I was impressed with how aesthetically pleasing both the decor and some of the dishes were, and it seemed to have the perfect vibe for friends to go and hang out in the evening. If you’re a shisha fiend, they have a lounge at the front that seemed really lively!
Personally, I don’t think I would return to Scene Indian Street Kitchen again. It wasn’t the worst meal I have had, but rigidly sits at the bottom of the list when it comes to Indian restaurants. Perhaps we had ordered the wrong thing, or perhaps some of you are plotting your foodie-fuelled revenge against me, one bad restaurant at a time, but whatever it was, I left Scene disappointed and unsatisfied! Ah, guess I’ll stick to the curry mile next time.