In search of a quick fix to satisfy his curry craving, Matt Blackwell samples Curry in Hurry, but finds no sense of urgency
I had a craving for Indian food and I was in somewhat of a rush, in need of an early lunch before a midday film showing. It seemed only natural that this set of combined circumstances would lead me to Curry in Hurry, one of the many outlets Muscat Grand Mall’s food court offers hungry shoppers.
Arriving at around 11.40am, the food court was yet to really fill up and while there were a few other diners dotted on tables, we had no problem walking straight up to the counter to assess the menu.
The selection of food on offer was impressive, with the menu featuring contemporary Indian classics and everything from tandoor kebabs to biryanis and curries, along with a host of side dishes. Our server was helpful enough, making a few choice recommendations as we took our time glancing over the options.
My friend took the server’s advice, opting for a mutton biryani and butter paratha, while I wanted something with a bit more of a sauce and so settled on the butter chicken with a garlic roti. We also ordered a side of dal tadka to share, but I was slightly disappointed that nothing from the starters section, which included samosas, pakoras and several other items, was available.
Food ordered, we took a seat and settled in for what turned out to be quite a long wait. Fifteen minutes later, our little electronic device began buzzing, signaling that our meals were ready. While a 15-minute wait for “fast” food, doesn’t resemble anything of a “hurry” to me, I suppose that You’ll Get Your Curry When It’s Ready And Not A Moment Before doesn’t really have the same ring to it.
I was hoping for food that would warrant the wait, but sadly, this wasn’t really the case.
The restaurant’s website preaches that they are dedicated to serving people who have an appetite and are on the go, and the food, which came served in polystyrene bowls and on plastic plates, certainly reflected this. At least it was not pretending to be something it wasn’t.
My curry was swimming in a deep orange sauce and at first glance there was no sign of the actual chicken, although when I began to spoon it over the rice, there was an adequate amount lurking beneath the surface.
As for taste, it was pleasant enough and had a nice bite when I tore up and added the green chilli that was served as part of the side salad. The chicken was a bit of a let down, however, lacking that freshly cooked taste.
Opposite me, my friend appeared to be enjoying his biryani well enough and after having tasted it, I can confirm that the mutton was cooked to a better standard than my chicken, but the whole dish was only lukewarm.
On the bright side, though, the dal was beautiful, with the lentils tempered well with herbs and spices in this staple Indian dish. Both the breads we’d ordered were cooked perfectly and acted as the ideal accompaniment to mop up the remaining sauce of the butter chicken and the dal. My roti came with a pleasingly liberal sprinkling of garlic, which would make me unpopular for the next few hours, but was easily worth it.
Another pleasant surprise came in the orange juice that I had ordered. While I was expected a sweet-tasting drink from concentrate, it was clearly freshly squeezed and incredibly refreshing.
The portion sizes were also impressively large. I battled through to finish my meal, but my friend had to toss in the towel and admit defeat, with his biryani besting him.
All in all, I’d say that Curry in Hurry serves its purpose well enough. It provides a pleasant alternative to the international brands that often dominate food courts and business did pick up throughout our stay, with several Omani and expatriate families dropping by to place their lunch orders.
The standard of food is not mind blowing, but for the price – RO8 for lunch for two – you get exactly what you pay for and it will certainly succeed in banishing those pangs of hunger. Just make sure you’re not in too much of a rush as there is nothing particularly swift about the experience.
Serves its purpose well enough for a quick curry fix
Curry in Hurry
Muscat Grand Mall, first floor
Opening times: Daily from 11.30am-11pm
Tel: +968 2200 9696
Lunch for two: RO8