The foot tunnel linking Greenwich with the Isle of Dogs was opened on 4 August 1902. Prior to that there was a ferry service. On 3 December 1999 the Docklands Light Railway (DLR) line linked the two places. The foot tunnel is free and takes about 10 minutes, while the DLR takes a couple of minutes (one stop from Curry Sark) and costs a bit more than a pound.
My friend tells me his grandad from Deptford never went north of the river in his whole life. And when it comes to curries the people of the south haven’t moved on much.
The Gaylord is a superb restaurant on the Isle of Dogs. Granted, it’s not in the most salubrious of locations but this place consistently delivers great food with friendly service and in a decent setting.
There is a large menu with all the old favourites (Murgh Madras, Murgh Korma, Murgh Dhansak, all £5.50), some even older favourites that have dropped off many other menus (Gosht Ceylon and Murgh Malaya, both £5.50), as well as specialities such as Bakhara (£6.95) with a heavily spiced herb flavour, or Shahi Jhinga Pakeezah (£10.95) charcoal-grilled prawns with diced onions.
It’s worth noting some interesting dishes. Fish lovers rejoice because the Tandoori Fish (£7.25), mildly spiced trout cooked in the tandoor offers a deep fish taste perfectly offset with some salad a bit of mint sauce. Mach Bortha (£5.25) is tagged as ‘exclusive’ and offers mashed mackerel (no bones), fairly hot (in spice terms) which can be served either hot or cold.
Bangladeshi telapia is well represented: Fish Tikka starter (£3.50) is a variation on a favourite, a classic Fish Curry (£7.95), or try Fish Massalla (£7.95) for fillets cooked in a massalla sauce.
But, why oh why is Aloo Bhortha (£3.15), a traditional Bengali dish, not on more menus? It’s worth a visit just to try this mashed potato with mustard, green chilli, fresh coriander and onions (would go well with the Greenwich Curry Club’s specially created curry sausages actually). Remember, people of south London, there is a foot tunnel and the DLR…
The Gaylord, 141 Manchester Road, Isle of Dogs, London, E14 3DN. Tel: 020 7538 0393. Open: daily noon-2.30pm, 6pm-midnight.