HomeReviews - UKSahara Grill – Hounslow, London
Sahara Grill - Hounslow Halal restaurant

Sahara Grill – Hounslow, London

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Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers Dubai

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers DubaiDriving down Hounslow High Street towards Treaty Shopping Centre, you’ll get to see a whole parade shops and businesses that include a fair share of restaurants and takeaways offering a diverse range of cuisines.

But if there’s one restaurant that manages to stand out from the crowd for its location – ideally situated on the crossroads of Laurance Road and School Road – and appearance, it has to be Sahara Grill.

This entire 92-cover restaurant, with its strikingly attractive design and decor, revolves, quite literally, around a large spiral column made-up of concentric wooden beams, which, much like a giant umbrella, branch out from the inside to create an exterior canopy, which extends around the entire shop front.

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers DubaiNo expenses appear to have been spared in creating what is ultimately a visually stunning establishment, with its dark shades and hues of brown combining to create a relaxed ambience, that’s fastidiously maintained and immaculately clean.

In addition, not only is there a cosy prayer area, complete with wudu facilities, located upstairs, but also a newly opened mosque across the road.

Sahara Grill is a long established Halal food business, that was founded in 2004, and now boasts branches in Dubai, Leyton, Whitechapel and Ilford.

DRINKS

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers Dubai

(L-R) Sahara Passion – Mint & passion fruit crushed in ice, £4.95; Sahara Mint Crush – Mint, lemon & apple crushed in ice, £4.95; Mango Frappe – With a hint of vanilla, £3.95; Coconut Crush – Pineapple & Coconut Milk, £4.95

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers Dubai

Mocha Frappe, £3.95

Arguably the best drink had was the Mocha Frappe which, while being just as thick and creamy, just managed, when it came to flavour, to pip its Mango counterpart.

Of the two Mocktails (though with a good amount of crushed ice, these were more slushies than mocktails), were preferred the Passion over the Mint Crush, only because the intensity of the former didn’t mellow out as quickly, following a few sips, as it did with the latter.

As for the freshly-made Coconut Crush smoothie, then this was a satisfyingly frothy affair, with the mango coming through gently. And while it was a decent take on the classic pina colada, some may find this, as one Lion did, a little on the sweet side.

APPETISERS

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers Dubai

Sahara Wings – Chicken wings in a spicy, hot and tangy sauce. Served with sour cream and chives, £9.95

These relatively small Sahara Wings were thoroughly based in a tangy-cum-spicy marinade that was, in terms of heat, managable (nowhere nearly as hot as we were warned).

More impressive was the thick and creamy inhouse tartar sauce, which worked perfectly in helping to control the level of heat for anyone who might find these too much.

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers Dubai

Sahara Lamb Chops – Lamb chops marinated in Sahara Grill signature spices and flamed grilled to your liking, £13.95

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers DubaiRECOMMENDED

Despite arriving far closer to medium well than medium, as we’d requested, these Sahara baby Lamb Chops were beautifully moist and succulent.

Arriving in a hot plate and presented on a bed of caramelised onions, these were skilfully charred, with a good coating of masala that just teetered on the right side of hot.

With the sweetness of the softened onions helping to dampen the heat of the spices, this was our dish of the starters. An absolute delight!

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers Dubai

Sahara Shrimps – Battered shrimp, coated with a signature sauce, £10.95

When batter coating such plump and juicy shrimps are as light and as crispy as this, you know you’re in for a treat.

And when these golden nuggets are then covered in a creamy sweet and sour sauce, then you can understand why management were excited in showcasing their Sahara Shrimps.

A really well executed dish, which one Lion absolutely adored; but, not quite good enough to challenge, say, P.F. Chang’s signature or the surprisingly good ones we had at GG’s.

A straightforward Mixed Dip Platter comprising of hummus, mixed olives, a Tzatziki or thick greek style yoghurt, and a portion of pitta bread.

The weakest of the lot was the hummus which, instead of being smooth and velvety, came out firm, claggy and grainy. The thick yoghurt was good, though nothing imaginative, whereas the pitta bread was of a firmer, thicker variety. Unless you are seeking after something healthy and summery, we’d recommend any of the above.

STEAKS

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers Dubai

Porterhouse Steak – Marinated in Sahara spices and flame-grilled to your liking. Served with caramelised onions, picante gravy and chips, £24.95

With the most alluring cross-hatched grill marks, the Porterhouse Steak was, quite naturally, more pink and more juicier towards the T-bone itself than the steak’s perimeter.

Sahara Grill Steak burger Hounslow Halal restaurantBeing topped with soft, lightly browned onions, it also came with a saucer of picante gravy, which was watery in consistency with only a hint of spice to it, as well as plenty of chips and a pair of cherry tomatoes.

We’d recommend exploring this steak in all its naked glory before anything else. In fact, we found that the addition of the gravy only detracted from the natural umami-taste of the meat by watering things down somewhat.

As such, a creamy side of buttery Mash Potatoes, alongside a Mushroom or Peppercorn Sauce, would be a better option, we’d say.

PLATTERS TO SHARE

Sahara Grill Steak burger Hounslow Halal restaurant

Sauté Combo – Prepared from two rump and two chicken steaks, cut into strips and southed with picante gravy, onions and peppers. Served with a large portion of chips or seasoned rice, £39.95

This platter combo was made-up of three elements: strips of rump and chicken cooked in picante gravy and a good portion of seasoned rice.

The gravy was considered mellow, with a touch of heat, by one Lion, but flavourful by another. As for the rump, then it had a good chewiness to it without being tough, while the chicken remained tender and soft. Both were mixed with plenty of roughly cut onions and slices of red pepper, which retained a decent bite.

All in all, this was a very good portion for three people, may be four, with an accompanying dish. Although the rice could have been better cooked and not so broken, this was a pleasant platter, albeit a dear one at 40 quid!

Sahara Grill Steak burger Hounslow Halal restaurant

Sahara Platter – Whole Sahara flame-grilled chicken. Served with a large portion of Mediterranean salad and steak chips or seasoned rice, £21.95

The masala marinade paste enveloping this quartered Whole Chicken was enjoyed more by one Lion than the others, with the former describing it as “lovely” and comparing it to “classic Lahori chicken”, while the others found it slightly too pasty in places. Nonetheless, it offered enough spice and heat to keep things interesting right throughout. More importantly, the chicken itself was expertly grilled, of superior quality, and moist, juicy and succulent.

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It was presented with a standard salad of cucumbers, tomatoes and lettuce, which were drizzled in a light dressing. Given the choice again, we’d go with the seasoned rice in place of the standard chips every time.

FISH

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers Dubai

Ocean Delight – Chargrilled salmon fillet, lightly seasoned and topped with a mushroom sauce. Served with salad and bread, £13.95

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers DubaiWhilst the cooking of the salmon was extremely good, we did find that it lacked seasoning.

We also found that the mushroom sauce neither helped with the appearance of what was otherwise an attractively charred portion of fish, nor add much by way of flavour.

Moreover, the side of buttered crusty bread just seemed out of place! This, for us, was easily the weakest of the mains had; which is a pity, since the salmon deserved better.

BURGERS

Sahara Grill Steak burger Hounslow Halal restaurant

Mex Border Burger – Topped with guacamole and salsa, £7.45

We can reveal that a Michelin star consultant was brought in by Sahara Grill to help advise and improve on their menu. And one nugget of advice implemented, was to add more fat to the composition of beef being used in their burgers, which they did with this Mex Border Burger.

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers DubaiAnd while there’s nothing strange there, what we did find peculiar was the open presentation adopted by the restaurant for its burgers in general. Such an approach would certainly make sense for an elaborate one with more to show off; but in this case, the Mex appeared seemingly straightforward.

What we had here was a standard seeded bun (a thin one at that), with one half carrying a 6oz patty topped with nicely melted cheese, homemade guacamole and salsa; and the other, some lettuce, tomato and sautéed onions.

Taste-wise, this was a surprising one which punched above its weight. The addition of the fat evidently working to make the patty not just a juicy one, but a flavourous too.

Pity about those sorry-looking buns though, which don’t do this Mex Border any favours. Perhaps that’s the reason why they’re presented in such a way.

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers Dubai

Sahara XXL – Marinated in Sahara Grill spices, £7.95

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers DubaiWhile the appearance, presentation and the choice of buns again leaves a lot to be desired, there was more to this Sahara XXL than meets the eye.

For one, the two segments of chicken were brilliantly cooked – locking in those juices and turning out bang on the money – while also tasting fantastic, with that Sahara Grill marination we raved about above.

Coupled with the gorgeous charring, which imparted a good amount of smokiness to the burger, this one turned out, to our surprise, to be an enjoyable one.

REGULAR SIDES

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers Dubai

Coleslaw (made in house), £3.45

A really well made coleslaw, turning out fresh and crunchy, and one that we couldn’t help but nibble on throughout the review.

DESSERTS

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers Dubai

Chocolate Pudding with Custard – Chocolate sponge with chocolate flavoured chips, topped with a rich sticky chocolate sauce and custard, £5.95

There simply can’t be anything more comforting than a warm, glisteningly moist chocolate pudding immersed in plenty of runny, well made custard, and enough chocolate sauce mixed through to satisfy.

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers Dubai

Toffee Apple Crumble with Custard – Individual portions of baked apple filling topped with crunchy crumble, a toffee sauce and custard, £5.95

RECOMMENDED

But for us, in terms of comfort, nostalgia and utter scrumptiousness, it was this Toffee Apple Crumble with Custard that took us back to bygone days.

Lovely pieces of crumbly apple goodness encompassed by plenty of beautifully made custard with toffee sauce running through it.

Sahara Grill Hounslow London Steaks Burgers Dubai

Chocolate Brownie with Ice Cream – Warm Italian baked chocolate dessert, topped with chocolate chips and a single scoop of ice cream, covered in chocolate sauce, £5.95

This Chocolate Brownie with Ice Cream didn’t even come close to the above. The former could have been so much more gooier in places than it was and the latter far less icy.

THE ROAR
Sahara Grill
3.5 FTL's Roar
2.3 Pride's Roar (2 Roars)
Alcohol/ Pork?
  • NO/ NO
FSA HYGIENE RATING
Last Checked: 10/10/19
Facilities
  • DISABLED FACILITIES
  • CHILD SEATING
  • DELIVEROO
  • UBER EATS
  • JUST EAT
Summary
There's no doubting the vision and ambition of Sahara Grill in Hounslow. It's an imaginatively conceived restaurant with little expense spared.

As a grill house, they offer an extenstive menu, with dishes that are presented straightforwardly. We can't help but wonder, however, how much better these could be if a small fraction of the creativity put into the aesthetical side of things was put into elevating and refining some, especially the mains and especially to justify the prices of a few.

There was no faulting their service though. Front of house was regimented, being as welcoming and as accommodating as any restaurant we've been to.

Menu Recommendation

Drink - Mocha Frappe

Starter - Sahara Lamb Chops

Main - Porterhouse Steak (with Seasoned Rice)

Dessert - Toffee Apple Crumble with Custard

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PRICE
ATMOSPHERE
SERVICE
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Sahara Grill
101-105 High Street, Hounslow West, London TW3 1QT.

T: +44 (0)20 3026 1111 | W: www.saharagrill.co.uk | E: info@saharagrill.co.uk

Opening Hours: Mon-Thur 12:00-23:30 | Fri 14:00-00:00 | Sat-Sun 12:00-00:00

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