Lotus Vegetarian Kitchen is the first veggie/vegan Chinese restaurant to appear in Manchester. Whilst it's not completely vegan, the majority of dishes are suitable. I've eaten here probably around 4/5 times since it opened and I've made the same blogger mistake almost every time. I forget to take photos. Seriously...as soon as that food is on the table, I take my hoover-like approach and just inhale it.
My mum came to visit this weekend and my first thought was to have dinner at Lotus. I was determined to remember photos this time. To make up for my past mistakes and because there were three of us eating, I decided to order loads of food.
We started with a Starter Combo to Share and Faux Lamb Pancakes. Guess what? I forgot to take photos of the starter combo! Surprise! You'll have to use your imagination here...the plate had spring rolls, samosas, crispy seaweed, chick'n satay, bbq ribs and prawn toast. We also had some prawn crackers brought over free of charge too. It was so good. My favourites were the prawn toasts and the satay. The ribs were really impressive too, so chewy and sweet. Chinese starters have always been my favourite and it was great to have the chance to try a little bit of everything.
|Crispy Lamb Pancakes|
After the combo we moved on to the pancakes. Luckily I remembered to take a photo. This was so good, it didn't taste too dissimilar to the mock duck I've had there before. They both remind me of having the 'real thing' years ago. I could probably order one of these just for me and gorge on them, that's how amazing this dish is.
|Salt and Pepper King Prawns|
Ahhh, where do I begin? The King Prawns were uhhhmazing. I usually hate veggie prawns, they're quite often slimy, chewy and tasteless. I just have never got on with them in the past. I don't know what was different about these but they were so good. The outside was slightly crispy and they had a real kick of chilli with them.
The BBQ Veggie Meat was so sweet but incredibly more-ish and the Ribs were just as delicious. They had an amazing chewy texture and I loved the way sauce stuck to the ribs. I wanted to order a dish that wasn't just fake meat and I was so happy with my choice of the Tofu Aubergine Hot Pot. It was incredible! The aubergine just melted in the mouth and the tofu was perfectly cooked, slightly crispy on the outside, nice and soft on the inside.
|BBQ Veggie Meat|
|Sweet n Sour Ribs|
|Tofu and Aubergine Hot Pot|
I have been to Lotus Vegetarian Kitchen a lot and I have left impressed every single time. When I first went it was really quiet, with only a few tables in the restaurant. When I ate there on Saturday it was packed. They were using both the upstairs and downstairs dining spaces and we were lucky to get a table, people did get turned away. Definitely worth booking if you want to head over there on a weekend! I'm so happy people have discovered how great this place is.
My mum was really impressed with this meal, which is a huge compliment to Lotus as she isn't veggie or vegan and is pretty sceptical about the whole fake meat thing. She couldn't really tell the difference between the faux version and the real thing, which is awesome! The service at Lotus is always fantastic, the staff are very friendly, attentive and ready to answer any questions.
I'm so happy that there is finally a veggie/vegan restaurant in Manchester that is open in the evenings and offers amazing, quality food that is good enough to bring non vegan friends and family to. It was so refreshing to have a proper sit down meal where all the food was all vegan. The price of food there is pretty reasonable, around £7 for a main dish which is reasonable I think for faux meats. Some of the rice and noodle dishes come in at the same price as a main but there are some cheaper options listed as extras on the menu, so if you've got a budget you can work around that. Definitely worth the price for a special occasion...I just need to keep finding reasons to get myself over there. It's my favourite!
Lotus Vegetarian Kitchen
536 Wilmslow Road
0161 445 7457