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Jimmy's Grill - review

AA Grill finds stunning eastern tucker on the streets of Kenny

Written by . Published on June 20th 2011.

Jimmy's Grill - review

TO Kensington and Fairfield, to play spot the £62.5m regeneration. A lot harder than spot the ball.

I am eating with Steve Faragher, of that parish, who has his own thoughts on where much of the  
money intended to transform the area, ended up. Unfortunately, legal prudence prevents us sharing them.

I've never had a bad time
in Kensington, having failed,
even once, to be shot, stabbed,
robbed, abused, short-changed
or treated with disdain

Where there are signs of expenditure, the outcome has not always been desirable for the community. Some shops were made over with grants bestowed by the gods of regeneration. Great, you think, then you learn that the first thing that happened was the rents went up, and the next thing that happened was Kensington lost one of the city's best chippies. And the rich get richer, and the other poor sods get shafted.

Steve Faragher: KVFM supremoSteve Faragher: KVFM supremoAlcohol has nosed ahead in the popularity contest with heroin, and the pissheads have replaced the smackheads as the most obvious manifestation of the area's enduring problems; the latter subdued with methadone, which means their lives are still screwed but they no longer spread their misery via the insecure back windows of the locality.

The alkies are generally incapable of harming anyone other than themselves but are so prevalent on the streets of Kenny that Steve keeps an informal record of sightings, Pisshead Watch, on his Facebook home page.

Somebody once accused him of focusing on the negative. They miss the point, not to mention the contribution Faragher makes in his adopted neighbourhood; behind the barbed Facebook captions lies a serious intent. Indeed, it was the evidence of Pisshead Watch that alerted local health agencies to the phenomenon. We practically fell over a couple as we left Jimmy's Grill. Hunched, vacant, cans where hands used to be, this is evolution clinking into reverse: from vertebrate to inebriate.

One geographically-challenged specimen stumbled into Jimmy's a while back to suggest to the boys behind the counter that they might “f*ck off back to Bangladesh, you P*ki bastards”, shortly before falling over and being removed by ambulance. Perhaps her confusion resulted from the Skol Super (9% ABV), it being the super strength beverage of choice among the Kensington jitterati.

Her somewhat lame attempt at thuggishness was the only trouble the staff at Jimmy's have had to endure. Kensington and Fairfield is, in the words of Faragher, an “interesting and varied community”, which even has its own online radio station, KVFM, and its own newspaper, and for much of the time exists  light years from the low-budget gangster movie world portrayed by sections of the media.

I've never had a bad time in Kensington, having failed, even once, to be shot, stabbed, robbed, abused, short-changed or treated with disdain.

Generally, I run shy of restaurant recommendations from others. People may be brilliant in their own field but know bugger all about food. Faragher's was the first endorsement that undersold the quality of the food.

On the face of it, Jimmy's Grill is yet another unremarkable chicken and burger fast food joint, though cleaner and smarter than most. Certainly, they do not make any claims and, whatever the area's merits, Prescot Road is not the place you would begin a search for top notch cooking from the sub-continent.

Sparkling saladSparkling saladNot fancy looking, but the moment it touches your tonsils, it starts to sing. Poppadoms (30p each) the colour of the Cholistan Desert, and twice as dry, with extras including a chilli sauce that kicked like an irate camel and brought out the masochist in me, and salad, all shiny and fresh as a daisy; crunchy iceberg, sweet tomatoes, a wodge of lemon and two green chillies the size of grass snakes.

Sheek kebab (£3.50), a flavour-fuelled missile formed from lean minced lamb fused with a subtle assortment of herbs and spices, served with singed tomatoes and onions and a load more of that gorgeous salad.

A vibrant chicken bhuna (£5.50) embodied pure, clean, fresh flavours, ditto a lamb madras (£5.50) possessed of a temperate heat, more basking in the sunshine than running for shade. With plain rice (£2), and brilliant just-made naans (50p each) which demanded to be devoured on the spot.

All this for under £20All this for under £20There is no licence so the insanely good value is further enhanced when you take your own booze. A generosity of spirit won't allow them to charge corkage, and we didn't even need to ask for a corkscrew; it appeared, with a smile, the moment we unbagged the carriers. Throughout our visit they displayed enormous charm and efficiency, and an instinctive courtesy that often comes so unwillingly to their uptight, English, service industry colleagues.

There are some rudimentary tables and padded chairs along two sides for those who choose to hang around. Not many do.
I forecast that will change.

The staff of KVFM hang around; they even held their Christmas do there last year. Should the staff of Jimmy's decide to open on December 25 this year, stuff the turkey, I'm going for Christmas dinner.

Breakdown:Food 9/10
Service 5/5
Ambience 3/5
Address:Jimmy’s Grill.
121 Prescot Road, 
Fairfield, L7 OLB. 
Tel. 0151 260 6122.

Venues are rated against the best examples of their kind: fine dining against the best fine dining, cafes against the best cafes. Following on from this the scores represent: 1-5 saw your leg off and eat it, 6-9 get a DVD, 10-11 if you must, 12-13 if you’re passing,14-15 worth a trip,16-17 very good, 17-18 exceptional, 19 pure quality, 20 perfect.

Liverpool Confidential critics dine unannounced and we pick up their bills - not the restaurant, not a PR company.

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10 comments so far, continue the conversation, write a comment.

Angie Sammons shared this on Facebook on June 20th 2011.
AnonymousJune 20th 2011.


Stephen FaragherJune 20th 2011.

fill your face

Cherry BrandyJune 22nd 2011.

Great review.

Stephen FaragherJune 24th 2011.

"The journey of a thousand meals starts with the first Jimmy's." Chairman Me

Darth FormbyMarch 5th 2012.

Never tried the curries here, but the kebabs...all of them, are very good indeed. Served on a plate with fresh naan, loads of salad and a side tray of half yoghurt, half chilli. I sometimes go for the big pile of lamb chops too.

My other top kebabs are from the Nile, or Friends, both on Smithdown. Great kebabs, part Tandoored and on fresh naan, but neither are good for sitting in, and you don't get a plate.


AnonymousMarch 5th 2012.

I want to go here

TaraMay 21st 2012.

<3 LOVE JIMMY'S best takeaway food i've ever had in my life. Just wish they'd opened up on the wirral only get to eat from here a few times a year when im at my dad's :( could eat from here everyday!

AnonymousJune 24th 2013.

Not The Cleanest Of Places.......

PoloniaJanuary 17th 2015.

Greetings from Poland for very tasty plain Naan an Samosa :D

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