Balti King is the best part of a night out in Sheffield
It’s better than the club
Before you came to Sheffield, your average night out was probably at Oceana Watford or somewhere similarly tragic, sprawling around in the disco room with a VK in hand, and it almost certainly ended scoffing a donner kebab in the back of a taxi.
Now a couple of years on, you’ve just stumbled back from West Street Live, the music is similarly cheesy and the VK’s were still flowing, but a drunken kebab will no longer suffice. You need poppadoms, you need a korma, and you need a waiter to serve you your food on a silver platter. A drunken snack is no longer acceptable – you want a fine dining experience.
Once you’ve discovered the wonders of Balti King there’s no going back.
Balti King is an experience unlike any other. Whilst its garish neon sign and unremarkable exterior may deceive you, you mustn’t be put off by the aesthetic. Inside it is nothing short of a utopia. With tranquil Indian music playing and an array of intoxicated characters sat at tables with napkins on their laps, the vibe is confusing and yet brilliant. It’s crazy and zen at the same time. Sophisticated and yet sloppy.
Far more bespoke than other post-night-out food destinations, the fact that Balti King is an actual sit down restaurant makes it infinitely superior. Where else can you receive table service in the early hours of the morning? There is something wonderful about sitting and pretending to be civilised, perusing the menu like you’re at the Ritz whilst trying to stop your drunken friend from vomiting all over the table.
The couple to the right of you are having a 2am curry date, sucking each other’s faces off, and one of the girls to your left is definitely half asleep, and yet theres an ironic feeling of elegance about the whole ordeal.
In Balti King, you get a far more personal and intimate experience than you would in the line at a kebab shop. The restaurant setting gives you the chance to sit and relax after your night of mayhem, and have a much needed debrief with your nearest and dearest. Also, in such a student hotspot, you’re pretty much guaranteed to bump into somebody you know whilst munching on a poppadom – or at very least somebody that you’ve Facebook stalked. The fun doesn’t have to end just because you’ve left the club.
Balti King is a social experience in itself- it’s like going to the pub. Maybe your course friend will be sitting on the other side of the room, or perhaps your Tinder chirpse will be making an appearance. You might just spend the night babbling away to your mates, but whatever occurs, the trip gives you the opportunity to stretch your evening out for another hour or so, and to bond over a Bhaaji, without the blaring music and crowds that you’ve left behind.
Perhaps most importantly, a Balti King offers far more scope for drunken scoffing than the average kebab shop. It’s a well known fact that when you’re suitably bevved and leaving the club, food is the only thing that will be on your mind. For many, a carnivorous urge to binge takes over, and this appetite can only be partially suppressed by a greasy box of cheesy chips.
Whilst a post Pop Tarts Jalfrezi may not have been your usual routine pre-uni, it’s hard to argue that theres anything more satisfying than grabbing a curry, rice and naan bread for a tenner when you’re drunk and ravenous.At this point of the night, you’ll probably be so hungry that you’re ready to devour a week’s worth of calories in one sitting, and a table full of Indian food is bound to be the dream.
The curry may be inexplicably spicy, and the Korma may be as scorching as the Vindaloo, but that only adds to the novelty of the whole experience. Besides, if you can handle the burn of those seven tequilas you had earlier, than you can certainly cope with a dash of chilli powder.
Balti King’s beauty lies in its strangeness. It’s not just a drunken snack, it’s a way of life, and there’s no other way that a night out should end.