Upside of $1652 fine for butter chicken


Noel Atkinson made international headlines when he drove 32km for what turned out to be the world's most expensive butter chicken.

The Melbourne tradie was hit with a $1652 fine for his Indian craving, leaving Werribee in the city's west to pick up his meal in the CBD last weekend, flouting stay-at-home orders.

But in an upshot to the hefty dinner, the restaurant Mr Atkinson ordered from is giving him a free year's supply of butter chicken.

Still, at $16.90 an order, Mr Atkinson would have to get the meal at least 97 times in the year to recoup his money.

Melbourne man Noel Atkinson who got fined $1652 for travelling to get butter chicken. Picture: Times of India
Melbourne man Noel Atkinson who got fined $1652 for travelling to get butter chicken. Picture: Times of India

Mr Atkinson, who is half-Indian, told Times of India, he had to drive that far because it was after 11pm and all the restaurants in his area were closed.

"I wanted to have butter chicken," he said.

"I grew up eating Indian food since my mother is from Ambala. I finally found one restaurant that was open but there was no home delivery to my place due to the distance, so I decided to go there."

Mr Atkinson was pulled over by police just metres from the restaurant.

He said officers followed him for some time to make sure he was returning home after he got fined.

Another restaurant that thought it was the one Mr Atkinson went to put out a search to find "Mr Butter Chicken" but it was actually Desi Dhaba he went to.

Now Desi Dhaba has posted ads saying, "Don't risk a fine, we'll deliver butter chicken that's divine."

In an Instagram post, they wrote: "We kinda get it โ€ฆ the lengths one can go to get that perfect butter chicken, especially during lockdown.

"Werribee you don't need to risk a fine for a delightful Sunday night dinner."

The restaurant said it was not supporting or promoting that people should step out in these times and break rules.

"We are only being compassionate for Noel and his love for our food as these are hard times for all and our empathy is towards all," the eatery said.

Originally published as Upside of $1652 fine for butter chicken