Chondona, Liphook, Hampshire
It says a lot about our times that the village of Liphook has more curry outlets than pubs (at least for now as one of them is being renovated after a fire). Chondona is the old favourite, having been here for years and it is the only one in the village itself (the other two, a Nepalese and a takeaway are in the new bit further down the old A3).
It advertises itself as serving contemporary Bangladeshi cuisine, although it serves the usual range of dishes from all the old-school favourites to tandoori and everything in between.
The front part of the restaurant was full (there is a side overflow area as well) early on a Saturday night and from what I saw the takeaway side of the business is thriving as well. People collecting their food can either stand at the small bar or take a seat at a table that has been set aside for them near the bar. It’s a perfectly pleasant place to have a draught Kingfisher or bottle of Bud (£2.05) but is maybe a bit too close to those dining and might make some a bit uncomfortable. It’s never nice to feel like you’re gate crashing someone’s big night out, them all dressed up and you with overcoat and scarf and a bottled beer to while away the time. Yes, yes, I know I could ring up and order in advance but I never do. Imagine – horror – if it was ready when I arrived? Then I wouldn’t have an excuse for ordering a beer…
The potato in the Aloo Gobi (£2.55) was a bit over-cooked and crumbly but the Chicken Rogan (£4.95) was delicious, with the amount of tomato spot on (i.e. loads of it) and, joy oh joy, the chicken was not in those over-perfect cubes that some restaurants insist on dishing up. There, in the tasty thick sauce and coated in the juicy toms were great big piece of chicken, not uniform, and not looking processed. I mopped it up with a Keema nan (£1.95).
Parking: large car park at Hungry Horse pub opposite or a smaller one at the back.
Delivery: free within six miles for minimum orders of £15 (last orders 10pm).
Specials: 10% discount on collected takeaway orders over £10.
Beer while you’re waiting: Chondona is a fully licensed restaurant or the Hungry Horse pub is opposite.
Waiting time: was about 15-20 minutes from the time of order.
Chondona, 15 The Square, Liphook, Hampshire, GU30 7AB. Tel: 01428 724201 or 722095. Open: daily noon–2p.30m, 6pm–11.30pm.
Waiting area 4⃣
Service and friendliness 8⃣