Vegetarianism is a way of life for so many people. More and more people I know are opting to become vegetarians or vegans, for health or religious reasons. It is therefore a matter of time before an onslaught of pure vegetarian fine-dine restaurants take the city by storm. We already have a set of pure veg restaurants that are doing very well for themselves, from Cream Center and New Yorker to Quattro and Little Italy which serve international cuisine. Latest to join the bandwagon is Vedge, pure vegetarian as the name suggests, serving up assorted Indian, Italian and Asian fare.
Vedge is located in Andheri’s action packed Fun Republic Mall, and is sandwiched between Copper Chimney famous for their meat and kababs and the boozy Irish House. It’s interesting to see how a vegetarian, alcohol-free Vedge holds fort there. Vedge stands for ‘Vegetarian with an edge’. An interesting word play on the name, which symbolizes both the food and the concept. We had a lovely little chat with restaurant owner Aditya Sawant who at 22 years of age had the gut and gumption to start off a concept like this. His concept works in my opinion, as it caters to the well travelled and well read vegetarian who may want more than just Udipi fare for dinner.
I was there to sample Vedge’s latest offering, a lunch buffet priced at only Rs. 299/- plus taxes. No kidding! A buffet in that price, in today’s day and age is hard to find. And since I’m constantly on the look out for the city’s best buffets I jumped at the chance to go eat there.
Vedge is a colourful space done up in bright lights and cheery colours. Persian tiles line the walls and kitschy curios and knick-knacks adorn the shelves. It is trendy without being too loud or garish, and I liked that.
I sipped on a refreshing Kokum Magic which was a perfect blend of kokum juice and spices. Thoroughly enjoyable! My friend’s virgin Kiwi Margherita had far too much shaved ice in it. He had to wait for the iceberg on top to melt before he could enjoy it.
Now moving on to the food, the buffet at Vedge is divided into salad, mains, and dessert counters. Don’t go expecting exorbitant varieties of food, because you ain’t getting that for the price you’re paying. The best part of the Vedge buffet experience is that they claim no two dishes shall be repeated in the buffet on two consecutive days. The salad counter has some simple greens and basic pasta, chaat, and veggie salads. The food is desi, Indianized fare – mayonnaise laden pasta salad and aloo chana chaat.
The trend continued in the mains too. The dishes and flavours were suited to the average Indian palate. Don’t expect gourmet dishes here. You’ll find the conventional dishes that our parents generation will enjoy over here. Once again the spread is decent for the price point- one soup, two starters, two Indian gravies, one Asian dish, one Italian dish, dal, rice and roti.
I skipped the Tomato Coriander Soup and dove straight into the Oriental Money Bags- deep fried wontons encasing veggies, and Peri Peri Cottage Cheese- paneer chunks in a spicy peri peri sauce. Both dishes are those you’d enjoy with a glass of cold beer by your side. The Veg Diwani Handi and Palak Paneer were both average- pairing them with the flaky porothas on the side redeemed them. The Thai Chilli Basil Noodles stood out at my favourite dish of the night, well spiced and not too greasy. If I re-visit Vedge, this is the dish I’d order again. The Paprika Pasta was again desi flavours and mushy pasta. Just how the average Indian palate likes their pasta.
The dessert lover in me was a tad bit disappointed with the lack of options. I skipped the Vanilla Ice-cream with chocolate sauce. The Angoori Gulab Jamun were inviting to look at (I wanted to dive into the vat of Gulab Jamun) and just as delicious to taste. The Muskmelon-Mint shots and Paan shots we were served at the end of the meal were lovely, gulp-sized and well flavoured.
Overall, Vedge serves up a decent lunch buffet which is absolutely worth it for Rs. 299/- plus taxes (roughly around Rs.350/-). The buffet concept will work considering the number of offices in the area and vegetarian residents in neighboring localities. It definitely makes for a cheap and cheerful lunch option, with desi, simple fare. Go Vedge!
Ground Floor, Fun Republic Mall,
Shah Industrial Estate, Opposite Laxmi Industrial Estate,
New Link Road, Andheri Lokhandwala, Andheri West, Mumbai,
Phone: 022 61668906, +91 8976042312.