Late lunch at Gurkha Palace

buffet laid out

buffet laid out

selection of dishes

selection of dishes

selection of dishes

selection of dishes

my selection

my selection

On a Sunday, the Gurkha Palace, more or less opposite The Swan, just off the centre line of the flight path into Farnborough Airport, serves a buffet.

I had hoped to arrive early afternoon, just after the lunchtime rush, when hopefully the food has not been sitting there all day long. Unfortunately I did not get there until mid to late afternoon. The place was deserted, never a good sign.

I asked why it was empty? I was told they had a large party at lunchtime. I am not sure how one follows the other. Had I asked why no food left, or why a mess?

I was offered a table. One would have thought, as the place was empty, I could sit where I wished, but apparently not.

For most of the food, it probably would not matter too much if sat there all day, and even if they brought out fresh, probably sitting in the kitchen all day. With food like onion bhajis, it does matter, and these were well past their best to eat. These should be cooked fresh, served fresh.

I started with soup, then helped myself to what was on offer. To my annoyance the plates were cold.

Staff were hovering around all the time, my being their only customer they probably had nothing else to do, and yet no one bothered to clear away my soup bowl. Nothing was cleared from my table until I paid my bill.

To drink, I had water. They clearly had not bothered to run the tap before serving the water.

I had no idea how much it was going to cost, as no price displayed. Last time I ate there, I thought it was around £9-99, you pay more if you eat off menu during the week.

I was quite surprised to find it was cheaper than expected, £7-95.

I picked up a leaflet. Apparently I had lunch, £7-95, dinner after five o’clock was dearer at £9-50.

I was there past five o’clock. I was curious, to what was different for dinner. Nothing, not even extra dishes, not even the food taken away and fresh brought out. The people served dinner, or should I say charged for dinner, were being served, food, which at a guess, had been sitting there since lunchtime, certainly since I had arrived.

The meal was at best mediocre. Served fresh would have helped. Not good, but not bad. I would think twice before returning.

For Farnborough or Aldershot, this is probably as good as it gets. Going by the large number of tacky fast food outlets, a local population clueless as to what constitutes good food.

Compared with the Indian restaurants down the back streets down the side of Easton Station in London, very, very poor.

If you decide to go for a Sunday buffet, I would suggest pick lunchtime, as at least the food will not have been sitting there all day, and you are paying less.

During the summer, I was at a garden party in Farnham. An Indian family prepared and cooked the food. It was fresh and delicious, Indian food as Indian food should be.

Were I to take Indian friends to Gurkha Palace, they would be insulted.

4 Responses to “Late lunch at Gurkha Palace”

  1. Michael Smith Says:

    They might be offended. Gurkha Palace is not an Indian restaurant!

  2. keithpp Says:

    I agree, not an Indian restaurant.

    The reason I made the comparison, is because several of the dishes were Indian.

    There is also no such thing as Indian. Food in India is regional. Taking that into account, reasonable therefore to group together under the generic term Indian, as part of the Asian food culture.

    I have not, for example, compared with Thai.

    If you try Malinggo Nepalese Restaurant in Aldershot, you will find food nothing like that in Gurkha Palace. I am told by Nepalese, food served at Malinggo is typical Nepalese, and it is certainly not like anything I have tried elsewhere.

    The underlying problem, is nowhere decent to eat in either Aldershot or Farnborough. Two towns dominated by disgusting fast food outlets, and McDonald’s, against strong local opposition, have been granted planning consent to demolish The Tumbledown Dick for a Drive-Thru McDonald’s.

  3. kevinrcarter Says:

    I’ve eaten there and it’s very good food.

  4. keithpp Says:

    Was very good food would be more apt.

    I was disappointed.

    But then for Farnborough or Aldershot, probably as good as it gets.

    I thought, is it me, more discerning, harder to please. Possibly, but then I thought of other places I have eaten where the food was excellent.

    Today, lunch at Thai restaurant in Jeffries Passage in Guildford. it was excellent. But then Guildford is not a town centre full of junk food outlets. Indeed, in the town centre, a grand total of zero.

    But then I cannot imagine either Guildford or Godalming or Farnham giving the go ahead to demolish c 1720s pub for a Drive-Thru McDonald’s. Only the Rotten Borough of Rushmoor sinks that low.

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