Saturday, 16 November 2013

Vegetarian Food Studio, Indian restaurant, Cardiff review

The Vegetarian Food Studio has cult status in the eyes of many Cardiffians.

Dishing out Indian vegetarian nosh on Penarth Road since 2004, they recently relocated to a bigger space and also added the wordy title of joint Best Asian Restaurant in South Wales (East) in the Asian Food Awards to their extensive list of accolades.

Visiting on Bonfire Night, VFS's bright and functional dining space provided welcome shelter from the cacophony of whizzes and bangs in the night sky.

We ordered a pair of excellent mango lassis to drink (£2.65) but the Food Studio is BYOB if you’re hankering for a lager to go with your curry. 

Despite VFS’s menu encompassing a huge range of Northern Indian, Southern Indian and Indo-Chinese dishes, it was a foregone conclusion that we’d each order their famed Gujarati Thali Special.

At £6.25 you get a heck of a lot of curry for your money…

Starters of the day, a light, cakey onion pakora and a potato pakora, were moreish but disappointingly lacking in crispness. So too, was a fiery masala coated poppadom.

Curry of the day, a buttery black lentil daal with plenty of bite, and a mild sweet red lentil and tomato soup were hearty but essentially simple tasting dishes. A quartet of soft puri and a bowl of fluffy rice were ideal mops for the sauce.

The last element on the platter was a pleasant pot of a thick, sweetened, fragrant creamy pudding. 

Having been drawn to the display of Indian desserts by the entrance to the restaurant, we ordered a trio to round off the meal (£2.50).

A soft and nutty fig roll was excellent. However, cubes of pineapple and pistachio barfi were too saccharine even for my sweet tooth. 

Even though the Vegetarian Food Studio’s special thali is cheap as chips, the flavours and textures on show didn’t blow me away. Perhaps there are richer pickings to be had from their main menu.

The Details:
Address - Vegetarian Food Studio,115 Penarth Road, Cardiff, CF11 6JU
Telephone - (029) 2023 8222


  1. £6.25 for a thali? Eating the real deal here in India for about 90p, hehe!