If you’re in England, especially in the Midlands, then it’s the ideal opportunity to visit a desi pub. For these pubs are a combination of two British traditions – and two very popular local experiences. They came about because of two factors.
The English are very fond of their beer. They are also passionate about enjoying a good curry. (Please don’t believe people who say that the English national dish is roast beef and Yorkshire pudding – or fish and chips – curry has been on top of our real list for many years.)
Curry soared in popularity during Victorian times – the queen herself was a devotee and employed Indian chefs – but its popularity rose to even greater heights in the 1950s because of the huge number of immigrants from India and Pakistan. Since then it has been commonplace to go out to the pub for beer then round off the evening in a curry house. This is especially the case in the Midlands and Yorkshire, both of which have high Asian populations.
But in recent years pubs in industrial areas have been closing due to the fact that industry was having its own closures in those areas. The answer seemed obvious. Instead of spending the evening in the pub then going for a curry, why not serve curry in the pub?
Enterprising Asian landlords therefore created the desi pub – a place where you can enjoy your beer and a curry in a traditional pub background. You’ll still find the traditional pub games – darts, snooker – but instead of the food offering being a bag of crisps or pork scratchings – or if you’re really lucky a cheese and pickle sandwich – you can now enjoy a wonderful curry right there in the pub.
JJ is originally from the UK and has lived in South Florida since 1994. She is the founder and editor of JAQUO Magazine. You can connect with her using the social media icons below.