|Not a nightclub.|
The modern, bright (almost dazzling) entrance, with its nightclub-esque velvet guide ropes, is probably the only overstated area of the restaurant, as inside is quite simple. It's far from your standard curry house, with no stereotypical pictures of the Taj Mahal or the Ganges in sight. In fact, apart from some atmospheric lighting, the decor is pretty basic. I must admit, I do like my Indian restaurants to have some hint of India (as I like my French ones to have a photo of the Eiffel Tower on the wall), but I shrugged off my aesthetic qualms and ordered a beer.
|I found it hard to get a photo of Panshee with no people in it because... well, it was packed!|
We decided to try Panshee on a frosty Saturday night in December, meaning the restaurant was full with Christmas parties. This made for a good, loud atmosphere and a testing time for the staff who were all brilliant throughout the night. It was quite possibly the best service I've experienced at a curry house recently (which is saying something considering they all seem to be very polite). The waiters were attentive, quick and had a good (and patient) sense of humour, which is vital when dealing with diners such as myself.
Onto the food, and the menu was pretty much as you'd expect from a curry house. In addition to your regular madras, biryani, korma and saag choices, Panshee offer their twist on regional dishes and have two pages of speciality curries. I took a gamble and went for something different - a maharaja bhona (chicken with minced lamb, garlic, ginger, fresh herbs and spices), a saag rice and onion bhajis.
|Curry, rice and bhajis - nice.|
Unfortunately for me the gamble didn't pay off because the curry was full of onions - an ingredient I usually avoid in excess (apart from in crispy bhajis). While I can't fault the way the curry was presented or cooked, the onions (which weren't present in the menu description) weren't welcome additions for me. Still I ate it all with just a little rice left over and ultimately felt satisfied!
My dining partners all cleaned their plates and had nothing but good things to say about their meals - especially the two who were served a giant naan on what can only be described as a naan tree!
|A novel way to serve naan bread!|
The beer choice was, again, as you may expect from a contemporary Indian restaurant - a selection of Indian bottled beers (including my recent favourite Bangla) and Carling on tap. They also offered several choices of wine, but I can't tell you what those were!
I ended up paying around £25 for my curry, rice, bhajis, poppadoms (and chutney), and a few bottles of beer, which isn't bad value at all.
As a side note, I was handed these ingenious little contraptions (below) after asking for some lemon (you must have some citrus with bhajis!). They seemed to be individual stainless steel lemon wedge squeezers. Are these a common thing? I've never seen them before, but was thrilled to use them. Talk about 21st century!
|Almost my favourite thing of the night!|
All in all, while the restaurant on the outskirts of Swansea's curry quarter may not be the obvious choice, it shouldn't be reserved solely for theatregoers. We enjoyed our meals, liked the atmosphere and were impressed enough by the service to make a reservation for another sitting in a few weeks time (and yes, that time we will be going post-theatre...).