Hollywood stars are discovering a new appreciation for Indian food while in the UK.
Tom Cruise raved about Asha's chicken tikka masala while filming the seventh Mission: Impossible in Birmingham last year. In June, Johnny Depp and his entourage booked out the 350-capacity Varanasi, also in Birmingham, and spent about £50,000 ($63,000).
Now, Deadpool star Ryan Reynolds says he's found his own hidden gem. The actor, who is currently in the UK to promote his coming Disney+ documentary, posted fliers from curry house Light of India on Instagram Stories over the weekend. He told his 44.8 million followers it serves the "best Indian food in Europe".
The restaurant in Cheshire, North-West England, said its phone has been "ringing off the hook" since Reynolds's stamp of approval.
“We’ve been so busy since. It’s amazing publicity for us. I want to try to get in touch with Ryan now to see if we can name a dish in honour of him — the Deadpool masala, perhaps," Shaa Rahaman, whose parents own the restaurant, told The Guardian.
“It’s crazy. To think he says we’re the best in Europe — Europe is a pretty big place. We’re glad he enjoyed his meal."
Rahaman couldn't confirm, however, whether Reynolds dined in the restaurant or ordered takeaway.
“The first we knew anything about it was when Ryan posted his review. We asked my parents if he had been in but they didn’t even know who he was. We showed them a picture and they couldn’t remember seeing him. So it may be that he or a member of his team ordered and collected a takeaway," Rahaman said.
On its Facebook page, Light of India, which is located in Ellesmere Port, describes itself as "one of the first Indian restaurants in the area, providing top quality food and service." It was established in 1980.
Reynolds was in Wrexham, Wales, over the weekend to see his team beat Maidstone United 5-0.
The Disney+ documentary, Welcome to Wrexham, charts how he and fellow American actor Rob McElhenney came to be the owners of a non-league Welsh football club Wrexham AFC.
Streaming from Thursday, it begins with the initial late-night conversation between the actors where the idea was formed, and fast forwards to them standing with the club's fans in the terraces cheering on the team they now co-own.
Wrexham AFC is the third-oldest team in the world and play in the English National League, the fifth tier of professional football.
Reynolds said he has fallen head over heels in love with the beautiful game — so much so that he schedules his life around Wrexham matches.
“I am so obsessed with this sport now that I actually hate this sport. Like, I wish it didn’t occupy my every thought,” he told the Associated Press.
Initially Reynolds and McElhenney, best known for his role in It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, had very little experience and knowledge of football but, with a little bit of help from their friend David Beckham, they are now experts on the sport.
Reynolds said the former football star was the “nicest man in the world" who gave them both “a lot of tips that have been incredibly helpful".
He also said his wife, actress Blake Lively, is now a football fan, despite her initial worries about Reynolds's purchase.
“She’s obsessed with Wrexham, she may be more obsessed with Wrexham and its possible promotion than I am,” he said.
— Additional reporting by AP