Spice Hut - Thorne, Doncaster

9-10 Finkle Court, Thorne, Doncaster, DN8 5TW 
Telephone: 01405 741 110

The Spice Hut Website

Opening Times:
Sun - Sat 5:30pm to 11:00pm

"We'd Be Round The Bend To Make A 3rd Visit"
Date of Visit: 13/10/17

Mixed Kebab £3.50 (a 30p increase since our last visit)
Chicken Madras £5.50 (a 75p increase - no one had any of the "old favourites" - just to show prices)
Chicken Balti £6.50
Chicken Mint Bhuna £6.95
Chicken Jhal Jhool £6.95
Mushroom Rice £2.50
Plain Nan £1.95 (a 25p decrease!)
Chapatti 70p

Three years on from our last visit, what's changed? The owners for one. The current Emperor has been in residence (so he told us) for just under a year.

The menu version of the Mixed Kebab (4/5), comes with a Seekh Kebab (5/5), Onion Bhaji (4/5) and Chicken Tikka (3/5).
Two of us substituted the Chicken Tikka with a replacement Onion Bhaji.
The starters were pretty good, all made from scratch, not bought in substandard frozen offerings.

We were even presented with complimentary popadoms and a (sweet) minty dip.

We eagerly anticipated the arrival of the mains.

Below, I mention the "common pot". Last night's visit further compounds my suspicions. I believe that each of last nights dishes started life in that big pot.

They all looked very similar and at the end of the day, all ended up being run of the mill curries.

Old Ironguts rated his Chicken Mint Bhuna (3/5), The Greyhound scored his Chicken Balti (3/5), likewise, I awarded the Chicken Jhal Jhool (3/5).

The Bhuna and Jhool were from the "Chef's Speciality" section of the menu - alas, there was nothing special about them.

There were no vegetables in any of the dishes.

If we were ever to return again, then I'd just go for one of the cheaper "Old Favourite" dishes, as the upgrade to a speciality dish returns no dividend.

The Naan breads and Chapatis are ok.

Finkleis a very ancient word and comes from the Old Norse meaning elbow, bend or even dog-leg.



"The Toyota Prius of restaurants"
Date of Visit: 12/07/14

(Special) Mixed Kebab £3.20
Chicken Madras £4.75
Chicken Pathia £4.75
Pilau Rice £2.20
Plain Nan £2.20
Garlic Nan £2.20
Vegetable Nan £2.20

I had half a portion of the following two curries - Madras and Pathia accompanied by a 1/3 of each of the following Nan breads - plain, garlic and vegetable.

A 46 seater restaurant; there was already a couple of groups of approximately a dozen diners in when we arrived at a little after the hour of six.

My starter of Onion Bhaji, Shami Kebab and Seekh Kebab were "different" to how I like them. By this, I mean that they had no spicing to them whatsoever. Having said that; I must give full credit to this restaurant, as in my opinion, they had taken the time and effort to make all 3 starters from scratch. I guess that they had done this at an earlier point in the evening, probably during their "prep time" before the restaurant opened.

The Madras was ok; in fact, despite it's failings (probably more my "requirements") I quite enjoyed it.
The Pathia was, in my opinion, a little too sweet.
No fresh ingredients or spicing was detected in either dish and I very strongly believe that both started from a "common pot" - which tends to be the norm.
The dishes were archetypal of South Yorkshire - nice pieces of meat in a voluminous sauce.
Pre-ordering, I was considering a Vindaloo. If I'd ordered that, then I may have gotten the Madras that I was after. It would have been all chilli powder but hey ho… when in Rome!

The Pilau Rice was light and flavoursome.
The Nan Breads were excellent and were every bit as good as they look in the photo on The Spice Hut's website.

At the top of this page, I describe this as the "Toyota Prius of restaurants." By this, I mean that it is a Bradford - South Yorkshire hybrid.

The Bradford type curry cafe template is followed - with a lack of table cloths, no alcohol licence (you can take your own alcohol if you desire), a lack of garish art prints and ornaments / decor, no fake fawning Maitre D', no irritating and obtrusive music, no repetitious questions to ply you with extras i.e. a side dish etc in an attempt to bump your bill up.

The box/bog (you chose) standard South Yorkshire restaurants cater for the masses, the norm, joe public. A decade and a half since our original South Yorkshire Curry Guide and we are still finding that South Yorkshire restaurants are "dumbing down" dishes to suit their clientele.

You can't blame them for this. Give the people what they want, what they like, what they know. Why alter a "winning formula?"

I am probably an atypical diner at a South Yorkshire restaurant - seeking the Holy Grail, the pot at the end of the rainbow, the Wizard of Oz… I think you get the picture.

The Spice Hut is obviously pleasing the vast majority of its clientele as it has been serving the good people of Thorne for the past 13 years.

Three more groups of diners took up their seats as we were eating / leaving - the locals obviously like it.

It's not a bad restaurant, in fact, there was a lot I liked about it.

This brave knight just isn't "normal"… and so, I continue my journey in search of the perfect curry!
Upon discovering, I shall return to Camelot a hero and take my seat by Arthur Pendragon at the Curry Table.

Awarded February 2015