The Funky Indian, is based next to the Winter Gardens in Sunderland town centre. We passed it on our Snowdog Trail in 2016. But Every time we walked passed the windows and peered in it looked empty. We’d heard good things about the place, but from the outside it looked like no one was home!
The Funky Indian
We eventually decided to pay the Funky Indian a visit and try out their Tapas style menu. Catherine rang up and made a booking for 6pm on a Thursday night (late night shopping and FREE parking in Sunderland). As we approached the restaurant we were still confused as to if the place was open. So, we walked into the Prosecco bar and enquired about our booking. We were led down a set of spiral stairs into the basement. It was worlds apart from what we could see from the road side.
Inside was a Funky Indian decor. Bollywood posters on the faux brick walls. Richly patterned feature walls. A Tup Tup parked up next to the bar, which the kids were desperate to climb on. Unfortunately there was a table seated next to it so we didn’t hang around it too long.
The Funky Indian Food
The food here is of a tapas style. I have to admit that I knew none of the items listed on the menu. Which was great in a way that it pushed you to try new things. To make the most of the new experience we each ordered different, so that we could share. Even the kids try to join in. Imogen chose a Tikka Trio starter and a Bahawalpuri Quorma. Hoping that this was as close to Chicken tikka and Chicken Korma as she could find. Abigail opted for Funky Fish and Chips, which is quite daring for her.
The waitress explained that most people order 1 starter and 2 main course dishes. But we misunderstood that and chose 1 starter and 3 mains each.
We knew that something special was coming as the meal was served on a slate plate. I believe that food should not only taste great, but look amazing too. The visual aspect is a big part for me when dining. Just like the atmosphere and the environemnt.
Starting from the top, we had Duck Pepper Fry Wrap, Tikka Trio and Gobi Manchurian. Gobi Manchurian was a vegetarian option, but I was willing to try something new. I’m glad that I had now. It was crispy fried cauliflower, in a Indo Chinese style Ginger and Soya Sauce. The dish looked meaty and tasted as good as. It was so richly flavoured that I wanted more.
Indian Tapas dishes
The slates were cleared and the mains arrived. Our options arrived in shallow tapas bowls.
Starting at the top we had, Seekh Kebab, Bahawalpuri Quorma, Kheema Aur Baigan Ka Bharta, Butternut Pea & Aloo Mappas, Butter Chicken with Pilau Rice in the middle. But Additionally to this we also had Shrimp and Okra Kodi, Veenjaali Ribs and 2 Naan breads.
This was the tastiest array of dishes I’ve had at an Indian Restaurant in a long time. It was possibly heightened by the variety on the table. Sometimes you can get bored of the same flavour over and over. And once you’ve got over your initial mouth burning from a chicken madras, it’s downhill from then on. Here every dish had a unique twist, which lead us to clean the bowls completely. Alright I’m lying a little we left the one that looked like chicken and vegetable soup. The sauce was a little thin for my liking and we had so many other to choose from.
Our table was covered in food, not forgetting about Abigail’s Funky Fish and Chips!
Next time we’re looking for somewhere to eat in Sunderland it will definitely remain in our favourites list. Considering the amount of dishes we chose, price wise it wasn’t too bad. With soft drinks, a Pint of Tiger, and a Bottle of Red wine the bill touched £90. For two adults and two kids, starters and mains, I felt it was fair.