Is this one of Sheffield’s best value Indian deals?
Monday may not be the most popular night for dining out, but is there really any better day on which to treat yourself?
It’s the perfect pick-me-up at the start of the working week, as you begin the long slog towards Friday evening, and a welcome escape from thoughts of emails and meetings.
Unfortunately, not all restaurants think the same way, with many choosing it as their deserved day off.
Everest, on Chesterfield Road, in Heeley, however, is on my wavelength, and even offers a great value two-for-one deal to help pull in the punters on what could otherwise be a quiet evening.
The offer, covering starters and mains, certainly seems to have done the trick on the night we visit, with a lively buzz about the place.
It’s our first time here, but the fact many of the customers are on first name terms with the staff can only be a positive sign, and given the friendly welcome and how attentive our waiters are throughout it’s little surprise.
That means little, of course, if the food’s not up to scratch, but the obligatory poppadoms get things off to a good start.
It’s particularly pleasing to find a good lime pickle among the accompaniments, along with the usual mint sauce and mango chutney, as I’ve noticed this essential but underrated component is not quite as ubiquitous as it once was at Indian restaurants.
For starters, we keep things classical by opting for an onion bhaji, along with a fish pakora.
Everest certainly passes the bhaji test, serving up a slightly sweet, fresh and crispy package, rather than the greasy and cloying concoction it can be – though it did seem a bit odd serving an onion dish on a bed of griddled onions.
The fish is tender and subtly spiced, with a satisfyingly crisp coating, and the portion was generous for a starter.
There’s a sense of theatre, too, with both starters served up from sizzling trays.
For mains, we went for the tori gosht, lamb and courgettes in a sweet and medium-spiced sauce; and butter chicken.
The lamb was tender, the sauce moreish and the liberal serving of courgettes made the dish feel healthier than it probably was.
My partner wasn’t blown away by the butter chicken, which while tasty wan’t oozing with the sort of creamy butteriness that would be enough to lure the chicken to its fate.
With two portions of pilau rice, a fluffy and flavoursome garlic naan and soft drinks, the bill came to a very reasonable £26.50.
The two-for-one deal is a cash-only offer, so it’s worth checking you’ve got enough old-fashioned money before you head out. There is a cash machine just down the road, but customers have to pay a small fee for withdrawals.
Everest is something of an institution in this corner of Sheffield, where it will have been scaling the culinary heights this month for an impressive 41 years.
Nas Raja has been at the helm of the family restaurant for around half that time and is clearly a steady hand if our experience is anything to go by.
He’s continuing his mission to spice up early week dining by introducing ‘Thali Tuesdays’ – where customers can try the Indian lunch box, featuring a tempting array of smaller dishes on a single platter – which will be available for lunch and dinner.
It will have to go some to match the Monday offer, which must be one of the best value deals out there.