14 June 2008

B2, the 2Bs

So B no. 2 was Bradford, you would think slightly less exotic than Berlin but in fact you'd be wrong. First, it's in northern England and for those of you keeping track, we live in a different country, namely Cymru. Everything is different in Yorkshire except the money and the Starbucks. Second, I stayed in a lovely railway hotel that was reminiscent of many Victorian railway hotels from where I grew up in Colorado, so that was a bit odd. Also odd was the bathtub in the room. and by in the room I mean in the room:

So that was cool. Obviously I had to take a bath.

I was there to visit the collection at the National Media Museum, which was lovely--lovely people, lovely pictures, great facility. In the short two days I was there I decided that I must seek out South Asian food, for Bradford has a proud and competitive group of excellent restaurants along these lines. After extensive research and forgoing the Bollywood-celeb packed Mumtaz (go to the website. it's insane), I went with the family-run Prashad Chaat House to the south of the university campus, past Bombay Stores (biggest retailer of S. Asian clothing/textiles in the UK, which is saying something), the Jami Masjid, the main Halal grocer/butcher in town and after a little while felt entirely at home in the lovely colony of south of Delhi. Except it was Bradford. So there you are.

The food, prepared by the award winning proprietress and chef, was astounding. I had a pea kachori for a starter, which turned out to be glorious pea pasteness with clove overtones shaped into a ball, wrapped in chickpea flour, and fried. Hea-ven. Everything was fabulous, and so my rec for Bradford is definitely this place. I advise walking there to get a sense of the neighbourhood.

Oh, and of course: it's Gujarati. It is a long-standing family maxim that everything good is from Gujarat and everything Gujarati is of course perfect. Prashad Chaat House now takes its place as yet another proof of this universal truth. (not that you need to prove universal truths, but there you are)

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