It’s been a miserable evening weather wise tonight in London, totally pouring with rain! We were driving back from a trip out to my parents and wondering what to do for dinner that wouldn’t involve walking anywhere, when I remembered this restaurant I have heard so much about in Southall. It has always been a bit of a trek from our home but as we were in the car anyway, we thought ‘why not give it a try’ and so we did…
Raunka Punjab Diyan is one of Southall’s many Punjabi restaurants. Being a total Indiaphile, I had been eyeing the menu online for a while and two things struck me about it:
- The totally authentic sounding North Indian dishes
- The price – it was just so reasonable
I was excited to try out the food. It was pretty early in the evening when we arrived so the restaurant was not yet busy, but they had a special event on this evening so were expecting it to get busy soon. Despite this, the staff worked to fit us in. Thank goodness because I think this might have been the best meal I have eaten this year!
The decor in this place was brilliant! As you approach the restaurant, there is a mini tractor on one side and a classic Enfield motorcycle on the other, both are things you are likely to see in rural Punjab. Inside the restaurant, murals decorate the walls. One depicts a Punjabi village, while another features a row of trucks at a roadside Dhaba. Little touches such as signs on the lorries saying ‘Singh is King’ and ‘Horn OK Please’ will make anyone familiar with North india smile. The chairs each have brightly coloured covers echoing just how colourful everything is in India, while little trinkets common in Indian markets adorn the walls.
I have been to a lot of Indian restaurants in the UK. Most of them have a mediocre menu that isn’t too adventurous or authentic. Raunka Punjab Diyan is nothing like this. There are so many genuine Punjabi dishes on the menu and best of all, it’s all totally fresh.
How many times have you been to an Indian restaurant, ordered a papad (Popadom), only for it to have quite clearly been cooked 24 hours earlier and be going a little stale? Everything, and I mean everything at this place was piping hot and clearly prepared that day.
The starters in particular were a hit with us, however everything was really tasty.
With this restaurant being so brilliant, you would think it has to be pretty pricey, right? Well it wasn’t at all. For three courses and two cans of coca cola, for two people, it cost just £27! It was a total bargain, especially for London. Alcohol is not on the menu, however you are allowed to bring your own if you really fancy a pint of Kingfisher or Cobra with your curry.
Southall isn’t exactly somewhere that is a must see destination for tourists visiting London, but it is worth making a detour to come to this restaurant.
To get there you will need to get a train out to Southall. You can then hop on the 120 bus and it is about a five minute journey.
If you have access to a car, you may want to drive instead. If so, there’s plenty of parking outside the restaurant which is free after 6.30pm.
Raunka Punjab Diyan, 466 Lady Margaret Road, Southall, Middlesex. UB1 2NW
Special thanks must be given to the owner of Raunka Punjab Dihan, Raj, as well as his staff, for squeezing us in at the last minute and giving us such a wonderful, authentic, Punjabi experience.
If you like the sound of this restaurant and the Punjab, check out my Pinterest board.