I decided to treat the bloke to a meal where he could order anything on the menu because it’s all veggie. Lotus Vegetarian Restaurant is a family run restaurant which offers traditional Chinese food and mock meats such as beef, prawn and chicken dishes. They also offer the largest amount of vegan dishes I’ve ever seen on a menu and have a hygiene rating of four out of five.
This isn’t a place that opens late night to cater for people after the pubs shut (although it is right near to The Red Lion), it closes at 10.30 and 11.00 on Friday and Saturday. The restaurant is brightly lit and their is no alcohol on the menu , although you are welcome to bring your own within reason.
It took me all of five minutes to peruse the large menu as I knew exactly what mock-meat dishes I wanted to try – prawn toast and beef satay, with my usual side of ‘crispy seaweed’ (crispy cabbage) and some kind of rice. I ordered a jasmine tea in the meantime, which came on a cute candle warmer made of glass hearts.
It took the bloke a little longer as there was so much to choose from and it all sounded so nice that it was difficult to decide. In our opinion the staff asked a little too often if we were ready to order, which makes it easy to loose train of thought I always find. However, I liked that after a while a friendly member of staff came along and gently asked the bloke if there was anything he was un-shure about or if he needed any suggestions. As someone with dyspraxia I would have really appreciated this if it were me still ploughing through the menu and the bloke didn’t mind at all either. He decided upon satay chicken skewers for starter and Lotus Special curry for mains.
We were so impressed with everything! The satay sauce had a medium-thick consistency and a subtle peanut taste and the mock chicken tasted as you would expect it to and had a dense texture (unlike some hollow mock meat/tofu cubes I’ve tried). My mock beef had great texture and a strong flavour but it didn’t overwhelm the satay sauce. The blokes Lotus Special curry was beautifully creamy and lightly spiced, with varied mock meats that were tasty and rather interesting. I absolutely loved the prawn toast and should have ordered another portion as they save food for you rather than clearing it away so you can take a doggy bag home. We were also big fans of the ginger rice as it complimented both of our main meals perfectly without overwhelming them.
The bloke always skips desert and ‘helps me out’ with mine as I usually can’t manage a full one. This time we were far too full for desert but when I asked for the bill a little perfectly arranged fruit plate arrived which was a nice touch.
Lotus Vegetarian Kitchen
536 Wilmslow Road, Manchester, M20 4BY
0161 445 7457