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The brains behind the best Indian restaurant in Birmingham (and perhaps, seriously, the world, if not the UK), Lasan, needed an outlet for their inherently playful natures. And a way to indulge in a spot of Indian street food that wasn’t contained within the four walls of a five-star, award-winning restaurant. The result is the mischievous Raja Monkey, an informal roadside café down Stratford Road in Hall Green that doesn’t skimp on an incredible selection of down-home and value-for-money Indian dishes delicacies, done just as they are in downtown Delhi or Mumbai.
Birmingham’s Lasan has built a serious reputation for serving up the UK’s, if not the world’s, finest Indian cuisine from its luxurious restaurant in the Jewellery Quarter. It’s easy to forget, with all the stars and awards crowding out the view, that Lasan’s success is built on passion – a passion for authentic Indian cuisine whose true home is the street stalls of Delhi and Mumbai, far from the glitz and glamour of Gordon Ramsay-approved dining halls. And so, Lasan’s naughty little cousin, Raja Monkey, down Hall Green’s Stratford Road, is bringing Indian street food to the masses (with more than a few quality credentials to back its mission up).
You can’t go wrong with one of Raja Monkey’s mouth-watering, dish-diverse thalis. These platters are as fit for the indecisive as they are fit for a king, or a little prince perhaps, for Raja Monkey is all about showcasing the incredible range of Indian street food at prices that will not break the bank. Considering their scope, complete thali meals are only available if you dine in at Raja Monkey’s Stratford Road, Hall Green premises (and who wouldn’t want to eat in at this charming Indian street café?), but thalis like the Rajasthani, Shakarkand (vegetarian), the Moghuls Korma and more can be ordered for takeaway or delivery. And here we have to introduce a stroke of genius on the part of Raja Monkey. Regulars at Raja Monkey can purchase a tiffin carrier, the stacked metallic lunch boxes that one sees being carted around big Indian cities at all hours of the day, bringing workers their lunch. Return your empty tiffin to Raja Monkey and get it filled up again for just a tenner – an incredible, fun, and authentic way to save every time you indulge in Birmingham’s best Indian street food!
First time here, and am very happy to report that it is amazing - food was absolutely delicious, and the staff were great. Could also watch our food being cooked through the windows to the kitchen, which was quite novel. Three of us went for the Thali (different ones - smoked mutton, chicken korma and the cashew nut kofta) which were ALL delicious, couldn't quite eat everything, as we hadn't been able to resist trying some of the starters too...ooh and the dosa. Our young waiter kept us well entertained with his chat - very funny. Would wholeheartedly recommend.
The food was fantastic. The service was excellent and there was a good ambience. I will definitely eat here again and would highly recommend it!
Excellent food and service. Though a little noisy on this particular visit. Mainly due to some "boisterous" women "chatting" on next table. Not really the restaurant's fault though.