Haveli @ Harbour Lights $15.90 Lunch Special, Cairns
My quest to try all the lunch specials in Cairns continues! The latest lunch special on offer is at Cairns’ newest Indian restaurant Haveli at Harbour Lights. Yesterday a few friends and I went to Haveli to see what was on offer for their $15.90 lunch special. Now I am going to try and make this post a short one because not much needs to be said. Haveli finds itself in competition with other Indian restaurants in town namely Tandoori Oven, Marinades and Spicy Bite. I recently tried the $10.90 lunch special at newly relocated Tandoori Oven (I didn’t blog about it). I found their lunch special to be extremely ordinary especially when accompanied with the nearly 40 minute wait for our food when we were the only people in the restaurant. I won’t be going back for a second round at Tandoori Oven. I have already written a post on the lunch special on offer at one of Cairns’ oldest and award winning Indian restaurants, Marinades. I do rate the food at Marinades, however on a more recent trip there it seems to have slipped a little. I am also a little sick of repeatedly overlooking the cold receptions from the female host. Prior to lunch yesterday at Haveli, Marinades was my pick for a top Indian lunch in Cairns but I’m going to have to jump ship because… wow… the $15.90 lunch special at Haveli is fantastic!
When my friends and I arrived at Haveli @ Harbour Lights there was three occupied tables and one waiter (I am pretty sure he was the owner). We sat inside since it was a little too hot to eat curry outside, I don’t care how fast the ceiling fans are going. The owner poured us all a glass of water and took our drink orders. Much to my surprise he returned with our six drinks in what was easily less than five minutes. Four out of six of us ordered the $15.90 lunch special, while the other two ordered items off the Main Menu. The $15.90 lunch special consists of rice, two pappadums, choice of a vegetable curry (either a Vegetable Korma or Dal Makhani), choice of a meat curry (either Rogan Josh or Butter Chicken) and a Naan Bread (either Plain or Garlic Naan). Now with this lunch special you get a LOT of food but to get two thumbs up from me quality and quantity must go hand in hand. At Haveli you get both. The curries are not just all sauce with no meat – a common occurrence at Indian restaurants and takeaways. The Butter Chicken was absolutely delicious and I really enjoyed mopping up the sauce with my Garlic Naan bread, which was equally delicious. The Vegetable Korma was rich and creamy while the pappadums were delicate and crisp. My two friends that ordered from the Main Menu ordered the Lamb Biryani, the Vindaloo and the Malai Tikka. They too really enjoyed their meals and they even managed to get in on the action with our servings of Naan Bread and Rice because there was just so much.
I don’t want to rant on too much but it really was a great feed. MS commented that it was the best meal that he had eaten in Cairns for quite a while and I think his comment definitely had some truth to it. I have read a couple of reviews that people have posted online regarding Haveli being overpriced for dinner but I think this is the case for all Indian Restaurants. This is also the reason why I only dine at Indian restaurants for lunch so I can take advantage of the specials and cheaper prices. Get down to Haveli at Harbour Lights and check out their lunch special. The service is great and at $15.90 you simply can’t go wrong! A word of warning though… Make sure you have the rest of the day off because after your lunch you will be left feeling so satisfied that lying on the couch is pretty much the extent of what you will be doing.
Haveli @ Harbour Lights
2,1 Marlin Pde (Harbour Lights Hotel), Cairns QLD 4870
Ph: (07) 4041 3502
Opening Hours: Mon – Thurs 5 pm – 10 pm, Fri – Sun 11 am – 10 pm