Chandani, an Indian restaurant in the heart of Woodstock (Cape Town), boasts of tasteful and delightful of Indian cuisine. Their slogan is “Come taste the moonlight.” I was considering this venue as a possible celebration retreat as its halaal friendly, prices are reasonable and who doesn’t like a good, old curry!
Due to many bad experiences in the past, I decided to try it before any commitments were made in terms of it being a venue for a large group of people. The place is quite easy to find (all the way down the main road and left in Roodebloem Road). The outside decor is quite vibrant and bright (very easy to spot).
I entered the restaurant with no reservation and they accommodated me quite quickly. (Ok, the place did look a bit empty). The restaurant is a house converted into a restaurant with purple & green walls and beautiful interiors. It has a very cosy feel about it. We sat in a separate room surrounded by 3 other tables. Very cosy.
The waitress handed our menus which seemed like little novels due to the variety of starters and mains. It was somewhat confusing and upon asking questions regarding portion sizes and recommended favourites, the waitress just stared blankly. Not very knowledgeable on the menu. Don’t blame her though as its quite a huge book to master.
We settled on a dish called the Non-Vegetarian Panchrangi Kabab (a mixed platter of tender Tandoori grilled chicken, lamb, fish and prawns ) (R100) and the Murg Makkhani which is Tandoori chicken simmered in a rich tomato and butter curry (R95) accented with fenugreek (also known as Butter chicken curry) with a side of garlic naan(R20).
The food arrived quite quickly and I was so excited to tuck into this very delicious looking meal. I tasted the butter chicken and even though I ordered medium hot, it tasted VERY mild. It was bland and there were hardly any chicken pieces. The sauce needed salt or any spice really. I know butter chicken curry to be slightly sweet in flavour, but I could not taste the sweetness in this dish at all.
The platter was very disappointing except for the lamb pieces which were quite delicious. The chicken was under cooked and mushy. There were no fish pieces at all. However, most of the items tasted like chicken, so I could be wrong.
After a very disappointing meal, I went to wash my hands in the bathroom. I had to walk to the back of the restaurant through a wooden door into the smoking section to get to the bathroom. The bathroom had two cubicles, one labelled women and the other men, but the basin was to be used by both gender parties. Nothing special!
The owner of the restaurant walked around during the evening and asked the patrons if they were enjoying their meal. I thought this was quite a nice personal touch and maybe the restaurant slightly redeemed itself.
I decided not to use the restaurant for my function. If warm, cosy and okay food is your thing, then try it out.I left the restaurant thinking that if that was the taste of the moonlight, then I’d prefer to stay in the dark…
Things to note
Location and contact details :
85 Roodebloem Road
Tel: +27 21 447 7887
Fax: +27 21 426 1462
Jagdish: +27 79 881 9478
Chandani Business Hours:
Monday to Saturday:
Lunch 12h00-15h30 (curryhouse a la carte)
Dinner 19h00-22h00 (curryhouse a la carte)