The Diary of a Foodie

These food blogs are made up entirely from my own personal views. I do not work for, or get paid by any of the establishments that I mention.
It is a personal account based on a personal experience, and should be treated as such.
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Friday, 15 July 2011

The Mango Tree/Indian/Carlisle

We were talked into giving this place another go after having a horrible experience about 18 months ago, apparently it has changed hands since then.

Situated on the A595 at Cardewlees, a few miles out of Carlisle towards Wigton.  It is a very busy road, but there is a good sized car park around the back.

We walked in and was shown to a seat in the bar by a lady and given a menu, then ignored somewhat for some time as she chatted with a couple on the next table who were obviously friends.  A waiter then came in and wandered over to take our drinks order.

We ordered and were shown to our table.  The restaurant looks like an old barn - nicely done out I must add, but with lots of old brickwork and little rooms. Nicely set tables and comfortable seating.

We started with some poppadums. They were fine, nice and crisp and the sauces were good.

I asked for a vegetarian starter, there was a couple of options on the menu, Chapati Roll or Veg Chat - I said either would be fine. I think I got Veg Chat.

It was very good, although the carrots were tinned, but the taste was nice and the presentation was lovely.

Hubby had Chicken Pakora - his response was "nothing special", but beautifully presented.

For a main I went for an Okra side dish and a "minted pea" side dish.  Both were ok, but nothing memorable. The "peas" were actually chick peas, for some reason I expected garden peas  :)

I had it with a paratha and we shared rice and chips.

Hubby had Chicken Tikka.  Small portion, tasted fine, but again, nothing memorable.

In a nutshell portions were small, nothing very exciting, and service wasn't the best we've ever had.

Bad points were apart from the Indian menu you would be forgiven for not realising it was an Indian restaurant, the only people we saw (young man and lady) were locals, the restaurant looks very nondescript with not a lot of atmosphere.

There was a book end of an Elephants bum by our table which was covered in cobwebs, and my wine glass was dirty, only realising once I had drank the wine.  The toilets need a good overhaul too.

Not somewhere I would rush back to, but let us know if you have been.

Here are the details for you:

The Mango Tree
Cardewlees, CA5 6LG,


  1. We first tried this place shortly after we moved to the area and when it was a Portuguese restaurant. That makes it a few years ago now and I have no idea what we ate but I recall it being soulless and boring. We agreed we would not go back.
    Then it became the Mango Tree although we understood it was still under the same ownership so decided it still wasn't worth a return. Then our club decided it was going to have its Christmas (2010) 'do' there and we went in hope rather than expectation. But hope was dashed. It was, for us, a miserable experience from the soggy popadums through to the main meal - again, it was so unmemorable I can't recall what we ate. The food was bland and barely warm. It wasn't as though they were serving hundreds of people - there was maybe 20 of us. Sorry, but if a restaurant kitchen can't cope with serving decent food for that number it doesn't deserve the title 'restaurant'. That, we decided, was that. Never again.
    But then a colleague at work began to rave about it - twice she went (in summer 2011) and on both occasions was really impressed. Then we received a call from a group of friends who were going that night and did we want to join them? Well, we're social creatures and so, once again, overcame our natural reservation and went along.
    Oh dear. Big mistake. The place is still soulless and charmless. We were given menus in the lounge area and I was drawn to a dish that seemed slightly different (not the usual roghan josh/madras/dopiaza/dhansak) but I couldn't tell what meat it was - duck or lamb - because the menu had been scribbled over. So I asked. The waiter clearly wasn't sure and asked what I wanted, duck or lamb. Hmm, OK, I want lamb. It was described as 'hot'. We were taken to our table and the starter passed without my tastebuds experiencing that 'wow!' moment. Then came the main. It was disgraceful. Hot it was not - in either sense of the word. I don't think the dish had even seen the spice tub.
    So that's it - and this time we mean it. We are never going back. We would drive past here to get to The Spice Enterprise any day of the week (and we do). We received a call from the same group of friends a couple of weeks ago - this time we made our excuses and declined.

  2. Thanks for your report, sadly this is something I keep hearing about this restaurant.

  3. try royal outpost - thai and malaysian restaurant on botcher gate
    great food different from the regular greasy food and classy settings some great reviews on trip advisor . give it a try u won't disappoint .