Restaurant review: ET reporter Kirsten Beacock visits the newly opened Jimmy Spices restaurant in Peterborough city centre:
MY experiences of the “all you can eat” buffet style dining have been mixed over the years, so it was with a little trepidation that I decided to try Jimmy Spices’ new restaurant.
At first sight, it is a huge space, but we were pleased to see it was buzzing on a Wednesday night and more than half full, and they have really spent the money of the seating, décor and cooking areas, which gives it a sleek and modern feel, without being soulless.
This city centre restaurant is the ninth one to open in the country and is based on offering diners the most loved and frequented cuisine in the Italian, Thai, Indian and Chinese in a buffet style set up – for a set price.
Speaking to the head chef at the restaurant, which boasts 17 chefs in total, he said they pride themselves on being able to deliver authentic tasting food, across the four ranges.
It was a bold statement but I like being surprised in life, and I was at Jimmy Spices, as they delivered on their food flavour promise.
We began with a range of Indian starters, including onion bhajis.
These were all perfectly spiced and of the standard I would expect in any self-respecting Indian restaurant.
So far, so good – now time for a little Mexican, and Ross and I had the chef cook us up from fresh a chicken fajita – one word – yum.
After a little break, I decided to have a curry, a Chinese fusion plate (believe me it worked), which consisted of trying sweet and sour chicken, chilli fish and lamb rogan josh, with some basmati rice.
The Chinese was sticky, sweet and melt in the mouth, the lamb was deliciously spicy and hot and all three were as good as I have tasted in Peterborough.
Rachel had the chef make her fresh naan bread, which we all tried and was delicious, to go with her veg curry selection, and Ross’s butter chicken didn’t last long on his plate.
Then it was off to the grill for a freshly cooked small salmon steak for me and Rachel, and a steak for Ross and some wonderful salad from a fine selection.
And I know your thinking, surely they can’t eat any more, but we had to try the pudding, which is based at a station which is the closest I will ever get to visiting Willy Wonka’s sweet factory.
I defy anyone not to love the selection of fruit, sweets, cakes and marshmallows and design your own ice cream, which was on offer.
The restaurant is ideal for work groups, no argument if someone doesn’t like curry or pizza, as they can tuck into the Chinese and no pain in the totting up the bill as to who had what starter or pudding as you can have what you like.
It similarly will stop an awful lot of arguments in families as there is something for even the fussiest eater, and if it isn’t there, the chefs are happy to make it for you.
The service for drinks and taking away unwanted plates, along with the advice of the chefs, was fantastic.
My only complaint was I probably ate more than I should, but I blame that partly on being seated next to the chocolate fountain, I haven’t got that much will power.
You’re advised to book on a weekend and there can be queuing, but for a unique, buzzing food experience in the city – your not going to find anywhere better – definitely worth trying.
4 out of 5
Information: Jimmy Spices World Buffet, 35 New Road, Peterborough, PE1 1FJ.
Telephone: 01733 564 930, website: www.jimmyspices.co.uk, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Sunday to Wednesday – 5pm to 10.30pm – £12.99pp; Thursday to Saturday – 5pm to 11pm - £14.99pp (child under 10 – half price).
Monday to Friday – noon to 2.30pm – £6.99pp; Saturday to Sunday and bank holidays – noon to 4pm – £9.99pp (child under 10 – half price).
Sample menu – changes weekly:
Mixed vegetable pakora, vegetable samosa, papri chaat, aloo chaat, chicken tikka masala, lamb rogan josh, saag paneer, tarka dal, rasgulla, moong daal halwa, gajar ka halwa.
Chinese fried wanton, spicy chicken wings, pork spare ribs, cabbage, carrots and bean curd, beef with Szechuan sauce, tiger prawns with garlic sauce, chicken with cashew nuts and water chestnuts, shrimp with garlic sauce.
Penne/spaghetti, bolognese tomato sauce/al formaggi sauce, pesto, combination of pomodiro pillete and home-made pizza base.
Baked fish, chicken in mustard sauce, vegetable lasagne, herb roasted potatoes.
Thai fish cake, Thai vegetable spring rolls, beef red curry, prawn penang curry, Thai som tam, yam woon sen gong.
Salad Station – Mexican enchilada/South American/chicken and mango/yarn woon sen gong/potato au gratin.
Strawberry and lemon cheesecake, chocolate brownies, pineapple cake, freshly cut fruits, ice cream, gulab jamun, ras malai, creme caramel.
Details coirrect at 03/03/11