Prashad and Bradford

We thought we’d wait for the Ramsay’s Best Restaurant fuss to die down before we revisited this family run Gujarati restaurant, situated as it is on one of Bradford’s many unglamorous, windy corners, plastic bags fluttering on barbed wire. Not to take away any of their success – it’s well deserved, and these days it’s best to book – gone are the days you could just swing by.

Twenty years ago Kaushy Patel started selling ‘night time snacks’ made from recipes handed down by her family, and soon a crowd gathered. Sometimes she made over a thousand a night. This woman is no stranger to long hours and hard graft; she put her three kids through school on the back of it, and whilst her daughter-in-law now shares kitchen duties, it doesn’t look like she’s taking her foot off the gas any day soon.

The food, in a word, is incomparable. Read the full review in the next few days, but suffice it to say that during the first mouthful Prashad barreled into my top five and our top ten. Somewhere else has to go to accommodate it, but that’s the name of the game. No need to negotiate this with Jill since she was sitting opposite me groaning with pleasure. We reeled out knowing we’d just experienced the best Bradford has to offer. Yorkshire for that matter. Possibly the universe. Certainly where North Indian vegetarian food is concerned.

You’re so close to Bombay Stores it would be rude not to. Fabulously blingtastic fabrics, buttons and ribbons that make you want to take up craft stuff. And the shoes! And the jewellery! All for Beautiful Indian Brides. I defy you to come out without something that looks brilliant in the shop and rubbish in your house.

But what will work in your house is something from the amazing Al Halal Supermarket just up the road; miles of aisles heaving with spices, lentils, fragrant pastes and awkward vegetables; foodie heaven. Take a couple of hours and do all three in an afternoon like we did. Go home happy.

Prashad, 86 Horton Grange Road, Bradford, West Yorkshire BD7 2DW 01274 575893

Prashad, One of Ramsay’s Best

Kaushy Patel, chef/patron at Prashad

Another glowing review for Bradford’s Prashad in the Yorkshire Post on Saturday following hard on the heels of them reaching the finals of  Channel 4’s Ramsay’s Best Restaurant 2010. In fact three of the last four were from the region with Sheffield’s Milestone and Winteringham Fields also just missing out on the podium. But talk about the impossibility of comparing apples and oranges?

Another thing. I can’t see the Winteringham Fields of the Germain and Annie Schwab heyday deigning to enter a competition which while it gave welcome publicity to the participants was first and foremost the next Ramsay vehicle and had nothing to do with finding the best restaurant in Britain. Admirable as the Milestone is in many ways, the notion of its kitchen being the best in Yorkshire let alone Britain is a joke. That hasn’t stopped them opening another. They’ve acquired the lease on the old Wig and Pen building in Campo Lane and Paradise Square, and plan a  Milestone 2 opening in the new year.

Talking to a longstanding aficionado of Prashad the other day he confirmed that 1) its success has not gone to the kitchen’s head and that it’s as good as ever but 2) the prices have inflated fast. Still, he says that he gets billed at the old rates because of his loyalty before it became famous. Not sure I like separate tariffs any more than I like separate menus in Chinese restaurants but in this case, well, respect.

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