Food review: Asian delights at new-look takeaway
- Credit: Stuart Anderson
How is the food at The Green Eatery in Opie Street, Norwich? Food reviewer STUART ANDERSON ordered a lockdown takeaway to find out.
Formerly known as Namaste Village, this small venue in the city centre opened with a new look and the intention of broadening its culinary pallet to include tastes from around the world. It's entirely vegetarian and mostly vegan and offers quite a few bits and pieces you don't see on too many other other menus.
My wife and I wanted to try it out as a Saturday night takeaway, and we both went for a pancake meal (£7.50 each) - one of the venue's specialities. I was expecting something like the South Indian dosas served at the eatery's sister business, Namaste India on Queens Road in Norwich. But while those are more crispy crepes, these were proper pancakes.
Instead, though, you get curry or noodles inside instead of the sugar and lemon you would have on, say, Pancake Day. They come wrapped up in tinfoil in two halves, and would make for a pretty decent-sized dinner on their own.
I went for the vegan 'chicken' katsu version, which included fried rice. The curry was mild, and despite it being vegan, creamy. Katsu is known as a Japanese dish and possibly its most famous high street version is the chicken katsu from Wagamama, of which I am also a fan.
My wife had the Gobi 65 pancake meal, which comes with noodles. This isn't named after the Chinese desert at the height of a certain swinging decade, gobi is an Indian (originally Punjabi) word for cauliflower. It was created as an alternative to the hugely popular chicken 65 street food that originated in Chennai in south India. It was spicier than mine and also very tasty.
Probably the most pleasant surprise of the meal was the 'yumm tumm' potatoes (£6), which came in the sort of flat, clear plastic container fans of Chinese takeaway the world over will be familiar with. A delicious savoury smell rose from within after I peeled off the lid and after spooning out portions onto plates we happily tucked in. The potatoes were fried, and mixed in were a range of other wok-made veggies, all served with a darkish sauce and spices, which were nice and hot.
As there was no dedicated starter or dessert sections to the menu, we went all out with the side dishes, picking five to share and mix up with the pancakes as we ate.
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The chick'n' nuggets (£3.75) and crispy cauliflower (£4.50) were packaged up together in one box, and didn't last long at all they were so good. The nuggets were breaded, fried golden and almost indistinguishable from meaty chicken nuggets.
The cauliflower florets were covered in deep-fried batter making them ideal finger food, and infused with spices to give them an extra kick.
A stack of six vegetable spring rolls (£3.50) came in their own little box, their pasty flaking off and very tasty.
The cheesy masala chips (£4.50) were another favourite. This may be nothing but a box of chips covered in cheese and masala curry powder, but it works ever so well. The chips were thin and crispy, almost McDonald's style, and the combination of spice and cheese balanced well. We also ordered the cheesy chips vegan (£5.50) however this arrived without the cheese, so was essentially just chips. This was where the dips - we got three of them - came in handy.
Our total bill came to £41. Not bad for two pancake meals, five sides and one rather large potato-based side dish, and certainly much more than we could polish off in a single sitting. The bill included a delivery fee of £3.99 and a tip. £6.41 was shaved off the bill thanks to a 15pc discount being offered through Deliveroo, which applies when you spend more than £25. For the amount and quality of food we got this was very good value.
The website lists a good selection of soft drinks, fruit juices and alcohol free beers, all for between £1.65 and £3.50. As we were at home, we didn't order any of these and drank some wine from the supermarket instead.
We chose the 'deliver as soon as possible' option on the online form. After about 30 minutes I got a call saying there was some sort of technical problem and the food would be late, but then it arrived about five minutes afterwards anyway. It was nice of them to have the courtesy to let me know, but I thought it was a prompt delivery in any case so it was really no problem!
Highlight and summary
I'd have to say the yumm tumm potatoes were the highlight of the meal. As soon as I caught the first whiff of this dish I knew I was in for a treat and it certainly did not disappoint. Overall I was impressed with the offering from The Green Eatery. Their food was different and delicious. Definitely one to recommend to all the vegans and and vegetarians out there.
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If you liked that, try these
Royalls Breakfast Cafe, Castle Meadow, Norwich
Also on Deliveroo, this cafe offers a range of bagels, baps and breakfast plates, including their signature full English.
Namaste Village, Queens Road, Norwich
This strictly vegetarian spot is one of the places to source your authentic Indian food from in the city.
Baby Buddha Chinese Teahouse, Ber Street, Norwich
A family run business serving traditional Cantonese cuisine and authentic, homemade dim-sum.
*Our food reviews are always independent. They are the opinion of the reviewer based on their experience of the venue when they visited. The establishment is not aware of our visit, is not informed we intend to write a review and bills are paid by the reviewer. The choice of places reviewed is also independent and is not based on venues which do or do not advertise in our publications.
How you can support your favourite restaurant in lockdown
Takeaways - While more places have opted to stay closed for the next few weeks, plenty are still open and offering takeaway meals for delivery or collection.
Vouchers - A valuable way to help businesses, you can buy yourself - or a loved one, as a gift - a voucher now to enjoy when it's safe to do so down the line.
Shop local - Make sure to support restaurant and pub suppliers, including beer, cheese and fruit and vegetables, by shopping local.
Social media - It's not an easy time for many people financially. A simple like on Facebook or follow on Instagram shows support for traders, though, and can help them build exposure.
Don't forget them when they reopen - It might feel like it, but this lockdown isn't forever, and our support should be consistent.