Z and I were first introduced to Padmanadi's food at the set up for the Heart of the City Festival, as a large tray of Veggie Curry Chicken and Potatoes along with rice is graciously delivered to the volunteers each year... it has now become a habit to stop over at Padmanadi a couple times a month. Tonight we headed over with four others from Folk Fest's Site Crew, to enjoy the great food and atmosphere.
We made our reservation for 7PM and arrived to a fairly full restaurant a little late. All of us sat down and, as always, we were each promptly brought a cup of tea and menus. One of our friends suggested we each pick a dish, beyond the must haves of Veggie Curry Chicken with Potatoes ($9.99) and a double order of Spring Rolls ($4.99 for 6). In the end we settled on the Sweet and Sour Pork ($9.99), Mushroom Deluxe ($9.99), Veggie Stir-Fried Mutton with Ginger ($9.99), Shanghai Bok Choy with Mushroom ($9.99), Nasi Lemak (Coconut Rice, $7.99) and Bakmi Goreng (Noodles with Mushrooms and veggies, $7.99).
Followed by the quick delivery of a dozen crispy spring rolls, the rest of our dishes followed promplty. Everything was great: the Curried Chicken was slightly spicy with the coconut shining through and all the veggies were perfectly cooked, still slightly crispy. The coconut rice added a nice flavour to all the dishes as did the addition of ginger in some others, while the mushrooms found in the majority of our order added a nice chewy texture along with the veggie meat.
Although we believed we ordered far too much food upon its arrival, we happely kept spinning the lazy susan, gobbeling up everything placed on it. As our dishes were cleared and we were provided with more water and tea, we all decided it would be necessary to have dessert. Three of us went for the Rice Pudding, two for the Chocolate Mousse, and one for some Mango Ice Cream. The rice pudding reminded me of my moms - light, sweet and delicate. Z commented that the mousse was thoroughly chocolately and creamy, which I confirmed with my own small bite of it as well. I must also comment on the spectacular presentation of our desserts - the rice pudding was laced with bright yellow and reddish-pink sauces (mango and raspberry?), with bits of sliced apple fanned out on the top, while a scoop of the chocolate mousse sat on top of a square plate, beautifully decorated with the same sauces and a few slices of apple. Our single ice cream order was presented in a clear triangular cocktail glass, with two neat scoops of ice cream placed inside. These were the perfect end to a great meal.
All our dishes were cleared and we were left to sit and chat in a now empty restaurant, except for one other table of two. Full and content with our freshly consumed meal, our surroundings and company, I was glad, as always, that we made the trek slightly out of our immediate stomping grounds to enjoy the ever satisfying Padmanadi.
Padmanadi's Vegetarian Restaurant
10626 - 97 Street
Tuesday - Sunday (4-10PM) M (Closed)
Just a quick note: About two and a half years ago I decided that I would change my eating habits to include only fish and veggies. If you are veggie (and even if your not!), the vast selection of an entire menu of meat free options is always a treat.