The Pakora Bar
96 Hanover Street
+44 (0)131 225 1115
Overall score: ★★★★★
It’s the first post of the New Year! New Year, new me. This is it, folks. I am going to eat healthy, get fit, work hard and…
Oh, who am I kidding. I need some deep-fried vegetables in my face – stat.
Lucky for me, then, that an intriguing new place has just opened up around the corner from my office – The Pakora Bar. This bright new addition to Hanover Street caught my eye a couple of months ago, and today it seemed like just the ticket to chase away those January blues. With reasonable prices, fast service and manageable portion sizes, it’s the perfect place to pop in for a bite of lunch with a twist.
Vegan food available at The Pakora Bar
I am happy to report that this place has a tonne of vegan options… in fact, I am willing to guess that about a quarter of the menu is vegan. Plus, as pakora is made from gram flour as opposed to regular flour, many options are also gluten free.
All of the veggie options are around £4-£5 each and you get five pieces of pakora with your choice of dipping sauce (the mango, chilli and Punjabi hot sauce are all good for vegans). Here’s a list of some of the delicious vegan pakora varieties available:
- Mixed vegetable pakora
- Cauliflower pakora
- Mushroom pakora
- Aubergine pakora
- Asparagus pakora
But that’s not all! Despite what the name may lead you to believe, there are dishes of the non-pakora variety too. The mixed vegetable samosa is good for vegans, and their daily curry is sometimes vegan-friendly too (when I popped in, they had a chickpea and potato curry on the go).
I decided to go for the cauliflower pakora, which is very traditional here in the sense that they literally take big ol’ chunks of cauliflower, smother them in batter, deep fry them and serve. But I will tell you, these are easily the best pakora I have ever tasted in Edinburgh’s city limits.
The batter, which was layered on nice and thick, was absolutely incredible. It was made with a flavourful blend of herbs and spices that had a satisfying spice kick, but wasn’t overly hot. The mango sauce that came with the pakora was a great accompaniment, my only complaint being I wish I had more of it! I used so much of it for dipping, I ran out pretty quickly.
With a great range of vegan options, fast service and brilliant food, this is a great option for lunch – or a late night snack. At the time of writing, The Pakora is open until 3am at weekends, so there’s always time to get your Punjabi street food fix.
Menu info: ★★★☆☆
Value for money: ★★★★★