New Tayyabs vs Lahore Kebab House
I went to New Tayabs last year for the first time and I went to the Lahore Kebab House for the first time for a takeaway last night. I know that they are both widely raved about on many websites, and that there have been mixed reviews on this one - so I thought I'd add my ha'peth.
I really enjoyed the food at New Tayyabs - especially the dry lamb dish, which I thought was gorgeous - rich and a real depth of flavour. The chicken Karahi was a bit too hot for me, but good nonetheless. I didn't have the chops, but will do so next time. I know many people - who are better qualified than me to comment - have said on this website that it isn't very good, but I really liked it.
As for the Lahore Kebab House - I don't get why people rave about it so much. I was very disappointed, because at best it was average. I liked the tandoori chicken wings - juicy, spicy and freshly cooked, but the lamb karahi was nothing to write home about and the tandoori paneer was just bland. The seekh kebab was also average and the salad had obviously been sitting around since the day before - I have never seem such dried out slices of cucumber - it was actually parchment dry and wrinkled - with cucumber, that takes some doing.
Mirch Masala gets good reviews, but I've not been there, as does Mai'da.
What do other people think?
I'm a regular at Tayyabs. Their seekh kebabs, lamb chops and dry lamb curries are on constant order, and I do love their range of vegetable dishes (esp their tinda (baby pumpkin). I've only been to Lahore once and probably had a similar experience to you - it seemed a bit subdued in flavour and execution compared to Tayyabs. However, I'm keen to go back with friends who are regulars as they feel Lahore wins over Tayyabs from their many years of experience at Lahore. I think they may be ordering different dishes so I'd be keen to try again at Lahore.
Mai'da is a different kettle of fish and is also fantastic but in a different way. I was also impressed by their lamb chops, their curries are quite refined and balanced in spices, they have a brilliant range of dhal, and their breads are fantastic (they do a roti paratha that is v similar to the ones the malaysian indians make for breakfast)
I prefer Tayyabs, but this is based on just the one foray to Lahore where I really wasn't impressed and when they were hugely busy. I love Tayyabs - especially the dry meat and bitter gourd curry and the chops. So good! I also like the busy atmosphere when I'm in the mood for it.
Mai'da I have been to about 15 times so far and it keeps getting better. Their lamb byriani is amazing - dense and unctuous with caramalised onions and a great yoghurt sauce. Their chops really well marinaded and moist. Their breads really crisp and light. The crispy okra I've never seen anywhere else, nor I have I seen in many other place the indo-chinese dishes they offer (one of their chefs specialises in this). I used to love their elachi gosht (creamy cardomon lamb curry but they've since taken it off the menu). I also adore their lamb soup - really light, sweet/sour, fragrant and aromantic. And it feels very relaxed to eat there, tho most people seem to get takeaways so they can have a lager... I just have the 0% alcohol one and pretend and then get a malteser milkshake for pudding....
just been to the Lahore for lunch & am fairly disappointed. Prices had gone up a lot in the new location. £3 for a lassi etc. the food was quite bland & to be honest only average curry house quality. Tayyabs was closed for Ramadan at lunch time.
We regularly eat at Tayyabs and find it excellent generally apart from the over liberal use of ghee. the atmosphere is great - high speed service and slightly theatrical though very friendly. I think that Tayyabs have taken Punjabi style food to a new level.
Lahore is dull in comparison.