EastZEast is a very modern looking Punjabi restaurant and since it opened in 2009 it has become quite a popular meeting place in Preston. A very handy location right at the top of Church Street. So one Saturday night when I found my first choice for the evening fully booked I popped over. Even though I hadn’t made a reservation and the place looked very busy they found a table and took my order pretty quickly.
I noticed amongst the Mocktails a good selection of Lassi, the yogurt based Punjabi drink. Great with spicy food so I got one of those and went for the Pickle Tray (£2.95) and poppadoms (90p). This must be one of the largest and tastiest selection of things to dip your large crispy wafer in to be found in any Indian restaurant. A couple of the pickles are HOT so beware.
The Naan breads (£3.45) are famous at EastZEast. Maybe not for the taste but the presentation. Huge dropping slabs of bread dangling from hooks. A meal in themselves.
EastZEast has a huge menu (I think probably too much choice) with traditional Punjabi Desi dishes including Pays (lamb trotters) and Maghaz (sheep brains). Karahi dishes, authentic Punjabi style with special eastzeast spices (£9.95 to £16.95 depending on size) are numerous on the menu. ‘Old school favourites’ can be found as well. I noticed Madras and Vindaloo (8.95) for the more adventurous.
I went for a Lamb Saffron Biryani (£12.95) served with two quite large side bowls of curry sauce and Punjabi raita. Quite spicy considering but delicate and delicious. We kept the pickle tray throughout the mains as we hadn’t quite finished all the contents. Nice to mix the pickles and chutneys in with the rice!
The Biryani is offered in two sizes, regular or large. I had the regular. I struggled to finish this off so there would be no way I could have tackled the larger portion.
Couldn’t manage a sweet but I can tell you if you have any room left they offer stuff like Carrot Cake, Jam Sponge Pudding, Chocolate Puddle Pudding, Belgian Waffles, Chocolate Sponge Pudding amongst the other delights. For a more refined taste they also have assorted Paan dishes (£1.95). Paan are piper betel leaves stuffed with supari (betel nut), lime, fennel and coconut; chewed as a palate cleanser, a breath freshener. Highly recommended.
Inside the place is huge split over two levels but has managed to retain a relaxed atmosphere (dare I say ‘party like’ in the lower area). I like it all the same though.
Service was well drilled, polite, smiley and enthusiastically friendly. A reasonably good evening if a little pricey. The East meets Lancashire, falls in love, eats happily ever after.
Value for money 4/5
Need to book? Even though I got in on a Saturday night without a reservation it is reccomended that you ring in advance.
Phone/email/website/address: 01772 200084, http://www.eastzeast.com/preston-church-street/ EastZEast, 19 Church Street, Preston PR1 3BQ