Review: Best and worst Brighton takeaways

I love a takeaway, always have. Granted the food is never as good, but I eat out, a lot, for the blog as well as for pleasure, so sometimes, to eat something I’ve not cooked, in the the peace of my own home, is ah-mazing. It’s got even better of late with delivery companies springing up all over Brighton, competing with each other to get some of the most popular restaurants on their books.

My two previous reviews of the best and worst takeaways are some of my most popular, stats-wise, and although a lot of them are still around, the bar has been raised and there are so many more options now. 3 years on though, Cummin’ up is still rank…

A few things worth considering:

  • Almost any food you order will suffer, at least a little, in transit.
  • The second you cover over a pizza the magic is lost, it needs to be eaten straight from the oven.
  • Ditto anything with batter, or chips.
  • Online ordering has never been easier, or more efficient.
  • Most delivery companies will deliver for free or the standard charge within 2-3 miles of the restaurant.
  • Very few places other than Dominos deliver or even stay open after 11, it’s a real problem.
  • Any I was given for review purposes, aka, I didn’t pay for it, are marked with an asterisk.

A lot of calories were consumed in the making of this, I do hope you enjoy… and no, I haven’t tried a roast delivery… don’t make me.

 Chilli Pickle

In mine, and many people’s opinion, this is the best place to eat a curry in Brighton. I’ve actually only had a Chilli Pickle takeaway once, many moons ago, so this is a photo a friend sent me of his one, to make me jealous. You don’t have to have it in that format, they do full size curries and sides as well. You can read my full review of the last time I ate in, here

The Good bits: You get to pick whichever curry you like from the menu to go with your thali, and there’s a good mix of meat, veg and fish options- I can highly recommend both the mutton and the chicken. I love the fact that you get a little bit of everything,

The Bad bits: It’s not an absolute beast of a takeaway- I just wanted more! Will order a full size naan as well next time too I think. They’re closed Monday and Tuesday.

Cost: £13.25-£15.50

Delivery: Done in-house.
Location: North Laine
Eat in: Yes
Menu: http://thechillipickle.com/canteen/order-now/ 

Smoque Grill*

I was actually contacted by Hungry House offering a £30 voucher to try out their service, so I picked one of their ‘top rated’ takeaways, Smoque Grill.

The Good bits: You get a lot of bang for your buck. This is the sort of stuff I want to (and did) eat on a really filthy hangover and the additional hash browns were a great shout too. The burger was nice, not amazing, but a solid effort- SO much better than the mouth parchingly salty Grubbs, burgers.

The Bad bits: Nothing especially bad, it’s just a different league in terms of the places I would usually order burgers from. The onion rings were really flaccid, stodgy and a total waste of time.

Cost: £30
Delivery: Hungry House
Location: Hanover
Eat in: No
Menu: https://hungryhouse.co.uk/smoque-grill

Pizza Face

Although I don’t think it’s the best pizza, it certainly isn’t the worst, and when you put it up against the likes of Papa Johns and Dominos, I can kind of understand why Pizzaface has become so well loved. I wouldn’t mind eating from there again, I just wouldn’t go out of my way to do so. You can read more on my experiences of Brighton & Hove pizza in my full review of 15 places.

The good bits: This is going to sound weird, because it’s is one of the blandest things there is, but this was the nicest mascarpone I’ve ever eaten. Seriously good and really really worked with the other toppings. I loved the salami and I happily polished off the whole thing.

The bad bits: The base really wasn’t the greatest and had a pretty serious case of the droop, even after the brisk five minute walk in the cold. Top left and right are before and after shots.

Cost: £11
Delivery: Deliveroo
Location: Kemptown and Hove
Eat in: No
Menu: https://deliveroo.co.uk/menu/brighton/brighton/pizzaface-kemptown

Pompoko

People in Brighton LOVE Pompoko. I can understand, it’s cheap, (scarily) quick and the ideal pre piss-up stodge to line your stomach with. I also used to love Pompoko, but I’ve just gone off it a bit, not sure why, I just have. It is what it is though, and I’m sure I’ll shovel down another one drunkenly at some point.

The Good bits: I enjoy the sides like the octopus balls, honey ribs and gyoza (clockwise from the top left), the spring rolls are pretty pointless though, so save your money. I always have the number 23, Ebi chilli don, battered prawns in a spicy sticky sauce with rice and salad

The Bad bits: None of it is really worth raving about, but I try to avoid the chicken as I once had the katsu curry and it was grey on the inside- ew.

Cost: £14
Delivery: Dinner2go
Location: North Laine
Eat in: Yes
Menu: http://pompokobrighton.blogspot.co.uk/p/pompoko-menu.html

MEATliquor*

I don’t hide my feelings for the food at MEATliquor, I love it, it is my kind of filth. I’ve eaten at the restaurant many, many times so when I was sent a voucher by another delivery company (RIP Dine in now) I looked no further after seeing ML on their list of restaurants.

The Good bits: I think those buffalo wings are the best Brighton has to offer, fried until crispy before being liberally doused in lush, buttery, spicy sauce. Battered, deep fried gherkins are obviously a genius manoeuvre, and the Dead Hippie burger with their signature secret sauce is one of my favourite burgers of all time. The darling former Assistant Manager Tom threw in a portion of gunpowder shrimp too, which was as generous in size as it was flavour. All the thumbs up from me.

The Bad bits: None really, other than the inevitable effect on the battered items in transit, and it really wasn’t a problem at all.

Delivery: Deliveroo

Location: London Road

Eat in: Yes
Menu: https://deliveroo.co.uk/menu/brighton/brighton/meatliquor-brighton

Wolfies

I raved about Wolfies in a full review earlier in the year, I’ve tried the cod, the pies and the monkfish, and it’s all fabulous, nowhere better in Brighton, or Hove, for fish & chips. If there is, please tell me below in the comments.

The Good bits: The above is Monkfish, the one with darker batter is curried, the chips I intimated were slightly underdone last time, were much crispier this time and the mushy pea fritter of goodness was an absolute beauty and got a lot of attention on my Instagram and Facebook too

The Bad bits: Batter always suffers the second it’s wrapped, the further the distance it’s transported the soggier it gets, it’s just a sad fact of life.

Cost: £12
Delivery: Dinner2go (as of August 10th)
Location: Hove
Eat in: A large(ish) table at the front
Menu: Wolfies menu

Pizza 500

I love this place and am itching to go for an eat in meal there on a sunny evening and sit in the outside space at the back. The Brighton one is always rammo and they have recently opened in Hove, where I’m sure they will also smash it too, I’ll definitely be paying a visit at some point.

The Good bits: I had the same pizza both times I’ve been, I love the sausage, oh the sausage, spicy and rich with flavours from the seasoning and fennel that helped to bind it together. The second time I went all out and got spaghetti puttanesca and octopus fishcakes as well. The owner was concerned that the quality would be compromised in transit (big tick) but I insisted, and they were just as great as I imagined. I would’ve loved them even more with some sort of creamy tartare dip though…

The Bad bits: The base was a little bit too crisp and the olives in the pasta were really, really salty, it wasn’t the end of the world though. If you want nice, lovingly prepared Italian food, this is the one.

Cost: £20
Delivery: If they do, it’s directly through them on the phone.
Location: London Road
Eat in: Yes
Menu: http://pizza500.co.uk/?page_id=58

Warung Tujuh

The Good bits: Lovely looking menu with lots of interesting and unusual dishes. Clockwise from the top left are: Mixed starters, Squid stuffed with prawn meat and chicken in cashew gravy and I would recommend all three. This was almost exactly what I ordered when I ate in last year and just as good as well. It’s not dissimilar to Thai food and tastes a lot cleaner and better for you.

The Bad bits: Again, the battered bits weren’t as crisp as they could’ve been (I sound like a broken record). But other than that, I don’t have a bad word to say and would highly recommend.

Cost: £30
Delivery: Deliveroo & Dinner2go
Location: Central (Pool Valley)
Eat in: Yes
Menu: http://www.warungtujuh.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/02/A-La-Carte-.pdf

Kambis

I must have eaten here a dozen times, eat in and takeaway and I don’t have a single complaint. The service is great, the food is generously portioned and always consistently good. I have sent dozens of people their way, including having our departmental Christmas meal there last year, and everyone loved it too. I have never had it delivered as I have always been passing, or eaten in.

The Good bits: We went for the mixed Mezze platter for one which was a lovely mix of meat parcels and hallumi toasted in flat bread with a babaganoush style aubergine puree as well as hummus- the portion for one is totally adequate for two greedy people. For main we shared a Kambis grill, which is a bit of all of the meat and comes with two sides, we had chips and rice which I ate dipped in the additional garlic and chilli sauce they put in at our request.

The Bad bits: The consistency of their hummus freaks me out a bit, its so smooth, and chips always suffer in transit, but other than that, no bad, on any of my visits.

Cost: £34
Delivery: Dinner2go
Location: Central (Western Road)
Eat in: Yes
Menu: Kambis menu

Goemon 

Bit of a cheat as I haven’t had a takeaway from there, but I really worry about this place as it’s in the no mans’ land of Preston Street, so I wanted to give them a shout out. They don’t really do much to promote themselves at all, and they’re going to need to with the incredible Bincho Yakitori making waves up the road from them. If you want a massive bowl of delicious ramen though, this is the place. Read my full review here.

The Good bits: The Japanese fried chicken was delicious. Not gonna lie, it definitely oozed oil out of the crisp batter every time I took a bite, but in a good way and was covered in a warm/sweet/sour sauce. I’m not sure what the stuff sealing them together in the pan is, it tasted like seasoned egg white. Filled with shrimp, leek, cabbage and shitake, these were just divine, as was the seaweed salad, so order that too.

The Bad bits: I found the broth of the tonkotsu a bit bland and they didn’t have any hot sauce to add. I think next time I would ask for the broth from the chicken ramen, as that had a really nice kick and I much preferred it to the pork one.

Cost: £25
Delivery: Deliveroo
Location: Preston Street
Eat in: Yes
Menu: https://deliveroo.co.uk/menu/brighton/brighton/goemon-ramen-bar

Sichuan Garden

I asked Twitter for it’s best Chinese recommendation and out of the suggestions you all came back with, the menu for Sichuan Garden appealed to me most. It has a traditional Chinese menu with more unusual dishes, as well as the usual suspects, so we opted for a bit of both.  We aren’t exactly spoilt for choice with Chinese takeaways, or restaurants. A few people have mentioned Gars to me though, and I think they’re now available through deliveroo now, so maybe I’ll give them a whirl too.

 The Good bits: We went for a set meal D and then boiled chicken with jellyfish which was the best dish of all, for me. They happily swapped one of the dishes for us, and the char sui pork we got instead was really good as well. We both commented after that we weren’t left with that rank, heavy feeling you often get, after a salty Chinese with all the trimmings, we were just comfortably full.

The Bad bits: It is, as with all Chinese food, a bit… beige. I didn’t touch those sweet and sour veg as they looked dreadful.  The ribs could’ve done with a bit more meat on them

Cost: £35
Delivery: Hungry House
Location: Central or London Road area
Eat in:Yes
Menu: https://hungryhouse.co.uk/sichuan-garden-brighton

Burger Brothers

Admittedly, this is an old photo, like 2013 old, but I know from seeing numerous pictures on Instagram, and lots of my mates rave about it too, that they are just as good now. I want another one, it’s at the top of my list for a revisit, so will update this post accordingly when I do.

The Good bits: Nice quality ingredients, tasty and robust bun, which held itself together right until the last bite, which was nice, and unusual for a burger of its magnitude.

The Bad bits: They don’t do chips or any other sides… for me that is a problem and the main reason I’ve only eaten from there once. They did in fact, used to sell very good chips, which they stopped doing years ago. They also sell out and close early, a lot.

Cost: £6.50

Delivery: No
Location: North Laine
Eat in: a few bar stools around the edge
Menu: https://www.facebook.com/burgerbrothersbrighton/photos/pm.889359351137580/10155874201965227/?type=1&theater

Cummin up

I’d just like it to be known that this is not mine. I did not pay money for it, nor did I put it in my body, my friend ordered it last week and sent me this snap, and his verdict: ‘Spaghetti, penne and macaroni, there was about 17p worth of ingredients in it. The meat was all banging, it just looked like shit’…. yes, that’s because it is shit. Just look at it- I can only assume that whoever served it was involved in some sort of bet, or dare, or was joking- whatever their thought process, I do not want to be a part of it. I’m afraid I can’t suggest a suitable alternative, delivery-wise. But if you need a fix of this type of food, then go to Juke’s Kitchen on Portland Road, it’s a bit of a schlepp, but very much worth it.

Cost: £3.50

Delivery: Just Eat

Location: London Road

Eat in: a couple of tables

Menu: http://www.just-eat.co.uk/restaurants-cumminupcaribbean-bn1/menu

Pavel

In the rather insalubrious location of St James Street, Pavel has been there absolutely years, quietly doing its thing without any fanfare at all. I was keen to try somewhere new for curry, and ordered the works, which arrived within the hour. It’s not as good as Chilli Pickle or Curry Leaf Cafe, but it’s a good, standard curry house, serving all of the old classics.

The Good bits: Lovely pillowy peshwari naan to mop up the generously sauced curries, the chicken dish was really lemony with a spicy kick and the king prawn madras left a little tingle on the tongue as well. Saag paneer was so much better than sag aloo and they were generous with the poppadoms which always gets a bonus point from me as well.

The Bad bits: The onion bahjee weren’t the best, they were super dry and the crispy coating was weirdly dense. I wouldn’t order them again. As delicious as the prawn madras was, the fact there was only 4, albeit large, king prawns, felt like a bit of a rip off.

Cost: About £30

Delivery: Just Eat

Location: Kemp Town

Eat in: Yes

Menu: http://www.just-eat.co.uk/restaurants-pavel/menu

So there it is, my comprehensive guide to takeaway eating in Brighton in Hove. Other honourable mentions must go to Nuposto and I love Thai, I’ve eaten in at both and know people who’ve had takeaways from there recently and said it was excellent- so I would recommend both of those places too.

Have you tried any of these places for takeaway? Where do you order it from? Please do comment below, or hit me up on any of my social channels (links top right).

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