Anything south of Woolloongabba scares me. The southside has lovely suburbs, don’t get me wrong, but I’m a westside gurrrl – it’s embarrassing but I don’t venture to that side of town often. When Southern Spice invited me to try their family-run Indian Restaurant at Mt Gravatt, I happily laid my habits to rest.
Now, D (that’s the missus, for you new readers) does a lot of things for me, three of which include being generous; making me smile; and being helpful. Funnily enough, Southern Spice also displayed these qualities too.
D offered to drive to this mysterious (to us), far-off suburb – and there’s the helpfulness coming in. Once we were seated, Abhishek, a manager, came over and helpful assisted us with the menu. He suggested I try the Spirited Lassi, an original cocktail that has Baileys added to a mango lassi. I wish that we had been served by Abhishek right from the beginning – when we arrived a different waiter had rather flatly showed us to our table, then left us waiting for several minutes without menus.
We ordered the ‘Spice Meal for Two’ ($56.90), which included Mysore Masala Dosai, any two curries, one rice, one naan, pappadoms, and a serve of Raita.
We selected the Lamba Korma and the Vegetable Dopiaza as our curries, and the Garlic Naan.
The Dosai is a specialty of south India, and is a thin rice and lentil crepe served with broth and chutneys. I’d never had a Dosai before, and I loved my first one: resembling a massive crepe, it was crispy, hearty, and filled with a delicious spiced chutney. It tasted rich but wasn’t sickly or oily, and I loved the accompanying coconut chutney, onion chutney, and the sambar, which was like a hearty vegetable broth.
My Spirited Lassi paired wonderfully with the slightly spicey Dosai. It had the familiar tang of a usual lassi, but with a creamy kick from the Baileys. D very generously (there’s number two!) let me slurp down most of it. Speaking of generosity, that Dosai was huge. I couldn’t imaging tackling a whole one myself, especially when I had the curries and naan to contend with.
The naan was tasty, but a bit different to what I’ve had in the past. I really loved the garlic filling, but found the naan to be a bit oily for my liking. Unfortunately the pappadoms had similar problems – the oil actually glistened on the puffy fried disks.
The Lamb Korma was fantastic. It had to be the most tender lamb I’ve had in awhile. I find that a lot of Indian and Asian places overcook lamb, or use a cheap and tough cut, but Southern Spice’s lamb was absolutely terrific. My vegetable curry was also tasty and was full of fresh vegies, although I would have liked more of a ginger flavour.
The ambiance of Southern Spice isn’t the best, but that’s not really their fault -when you’re right on such a busy road, there’s not a lot you can do about the heavy traffic noises.
I could not fault the service I received from from Abhishek and Prashant during our visit. Their politeness, consideration, and swift service – and, alright, they were handsome – made me smile.
And as for D making me smile? Earlier in the night I had been telling Abhishek how much I enjoyed the Spirited Lassi. D, wanting to be the ever-helpful guest, cheerily chimed in with:
“It’s way better than the laksas we’ve had from other Indian places!”
Thank you, D and Southern Spice, for a delightful evening.
2000 Logan Road, Upper Mt Gravatt
(07) 3343 5435
Thank you to Southern Spice for dinner and the delicious laksa