The great Indian thali experience: Sagar, Hammersmith

I’ve got a bit of a travelling husband. So earlier this week, instead of sitting around at my dining table on my own, I decided to take myself out for a proper meal at a proper restaurant. Could have been fairly boring, but thankfully wasn’t!

I have to say, though, for the first 5 minutes, the waiters had no clue what to do with me. Where should I be seated, hmm…one scratched his head and vaguely pointed at a table, then changed his mind and consulted his mate, who pointed at another table, until I decided to take matters into my own hands and asked if I could sit at that table please. Huge sighs of relief.

Am I glad I picked that table! One foot away from the most interesting family I’ve encountered in a long time, having a very captivating conversation. I changed my mind about the 15-minute dosa I was going to order, and went for a full-on thali instead.

Straight out of a 1950s movie,  the teenage daughters in printed cotton sarees, one with two long braids down to her waist and the other with a nice big hair bun, the father in a beautifully ironed grey suit, and mother hidden behind a giant coat, speaking perfect English with the strongest Tamil accent I’ve heard in a long time, and discussing contraception in great detail. Now I know, I shouldn’t have been eavesdropping or sneaking peeks at their table, but what was I to do as I waited for my thali which mind you seemed to take awfully long to arrive. The waiters though were very polite and kept coming over to reassure me and apologize. I munched on some pappadam, chutney and pickle to keep myself occupied till my meal arrived. It finally did.

Sagar thali

The Sagar thali

Smelled great and looked very appetising and was a LOT. I’d chosen the Sagar thali, over the Udipi thali and the Rajdhani thali. Here’s what was in it – brace yourself – a laccha paratha (layered paratha), lemon rice, dal, vegetable korma, dhudhi in coconut and yogurt curry, dry spiced potatoes, raitha, a salad, and carrot halwa for dessert. For a long moment, I forgot about my dinner companions at the other table. When I tuned into conversation again, they were just coming off a discussion about childbirth, and launching into one about names. Ah, I see a pattern now…

My meal was delicious, and I am so glad my bus was on a diversion and couldn’t take me home. Walked back with a very full but happy tummy and a blog post idea :)

Go to Sagar in Hammersmith! If you’re on the look-out for a not-very-spicy but tasty vegetarian Indian meal that’s reasonably priced, I’d recommend it. Don’t forget to eat some of the colourful fennel seeds on the way out – you’re going to need these to help you digest that big meal.

P.S. The 15-minute dosa is very good too, by the way. You have the choice of 11 different kinds! Also, if you’re in Hammersmith, check out Noodles & Magic for some great Thai food.

Sagar on Urbanspoon

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