Indian Restaurant Rave: Spices on Ocean, Rockingham
I’ve eaten at Spices on Ocean Indian restaurant twice now; once dining in the restaurant and once take away. On neither occasion has it been appropriate for me to photograph the meal, so I wasn’t planning to do a review until a later date. The quality and value of the take away meal that I had recently, however, has prompted me to hit the keyboard because Spices on Ocean is simply one of the finest Indian restaurants in Perth.
Specialising in North Indian cuisine, Spices on Ocean has an extensive menu that includes all the usual dishes you would expect to find, and a few that were new to me. The newly fitted out restaurant is comfortable to dine in and the service is efficient and friendly. The restaurant is fully licensed with a fair selection of wines, beers and spirits.
I dined in the restaurant at Spices On Ocean as part of a party of four. For entree we shared an onion bhaji and a chicken 65 (marinated chicken pieces coated in chickpea batter with green coriander, chopped chilli, chopped onions, hot spices & deep fried). I know onion bhaji isn’t authentic but it’s one of my favourite dishes – this was one of the best, and by no means “doughy” like some. The chicken 65 was deliciously spicy but not over the top.
For main course we shared chicken korma, lamb rogan josh, beef vindaloo and lamb meat ball curry. On the side we shared a saffron rice, a kashmiri rice, a plain naan, a kashmiri naan and a cucumber raita. All four of us enjoyed the meal thoroughly, including the two who were new to Indian cuisine and heavily spiced foods. There was very little left of anything when we’d finished. As with all quality Indian food, even the spiciest of curries slides down without leaving you feeling that your throat’s been ripped out.
I can remember individual dishes that have been my favourites from various restaurants over the years, but as a whole experience I can’t think of anywhere better in Perth, except maybe Maya in Fremantle. I used to be a regular at The Royal India in West Perth, but it has become overpriced and has too much competition these days.
Side note: The best Indian meal I ever had was the Grand Feast at Zaaffran in Sydney some ten years ago, arguably Australia’s best Indian restaurant. Unfortunately we were sat outside and the staff failed to notice when it started to rain, leaving us and our royal silver platters to get rather wet.
The lamb meat ball curry was very tasty, and is actually the curry that I ordered when I had my take away meal. In hindsight I wish I’d ordered something hotter as a single curry, although that didn’t detract from it being very tasty. Little things seem to be important here – for example, you get a decent serving of tamarind chutney with the onion bhaji, even when you order take away.
This is not a bargain basement restaurant, but the quality justifies the price. The real value for money comes in the take away – one entree, a rice and a curry could easily feed two people for $30, or swap the entree for another curry and its $40.
One thing that I noticed on the take away menu was lunch specials available on Wednesday to Sunday, where you can get a large variety of curries with rice for only $10.50. This is remarkable value for money for such quality; you’ll pay that to get something very ordinary from Maya Masala. There’s also a variety of biryanis ($12-$19), a lamb sheek kebab roll ($12) and even a serving of chips ($2).
The take away menu on the website looks expensive, but at the date of this post the pricing is incorrect, and around 30% higher than the take away price in most cases. Most take away curries are around $17.50, not the $24.90 shown on the site.
If you live South of the River and enjoy Indian food, you have to try Spices on Ocean. Highly recommended.
Spices on Ocean Indian Restaurant
41C Rockingham Beach Road
Phone: (08) 9528 4844