Painted Elephant Restaurant Review

So, I said I wasn't going to post anything until I'm in Korea, but I really want to review this vegan restaurant in Newcastle. 
I'm not vegan or vegetarian, but wanted to try out a total meat free restaurant. 

Painted Elephant is located in the centre of Newcastle. It is hard to find if you don't know what you're looking for! It's hidden in a sketchy looking area! It's also not sign posted until you get on top of a ramp.
Their interior is nice! Hand painted walls in a black and purple theme. Their chairs aren't comfy though, they were those fold up garden style chairs with pillows which kept falling onto the floor. 

Our waiter was friendly. A little inexperienced, but that's what they're all about. Their website states that they don't hire experienced people, but hire them for their passion! A nice concept. 

They don't have menu's! Their food changes daily/weekly so I guess it would be impractical. However, I do think they need something on the tables if you're not sitting close to the board. There are a couple of tables where you would have to get out off your seat to look at the menu. 

They are not licensed to serve alcohol, so only had soft drinks. But they charge £1pp for you to bring your own which is pretty good. We had the Rose punch and the grape fizz. Both tasted nice. The rose punch tasted like parma violets!  

So, to start I had the balsamic beet. A beetroot salad with a balsamic glaze. It was lovely, I love beetroot! It was nice because the beetroot didn't taste pickled! I'm not a big fan of pickled beetroot. There was a range of different leaves so you got a nice flavour and not just green. There were mixed seeds and lentils on the salad as well as a big sprinkling of shichimi. The shichimi gave the salad a little bit of a kick. 

David started with their hummus board. I don't think the pitta was homemade, but I'm not sure. It was good. There were big pieces of green leaves in the hummus, not sure what that was. 

As a main I had their Ouishii burger. I think it was meant to be "oishii" since it was Japanese themed. It was a chickpea burger spiced with shichimi, served with a mint miso mayo. I'll be honest with you, I couldn't taste the shichimi! The mint miso mayo was a nice touch though. The side salad was the same as the one I had on my starter minus the beetroot and the potatoes were overcooked. The skin was hard and stale. 

David had the thali plate. So the tikka gobi dhal with a coconut rice. The dhal was lovely. It had big pieces of cauliflower and broccoli and it tasted really really good! I loved it. However, the rice was so mushy and wet, as if it had been sitting in the pot for ages waiting to be served. 

We wanted to get a dessert, but the board said it was £8.50! The same price as a main course, so we didn't bother. Their cashew key lime pie sounded divine!
[Edit: The restaurant contacted via twitter stating that there was a mistake on the menu, and prices are actually £4.50 - I'll need to go again for their desserts!]

We enjoyed the starters, The main course was nice, but it did lack a bit in flavour. With the overcooked potatoes and rice and the expensive desserts, I give this place a 3/5. 

I do love how they change their menu often though, so you can always visit and try something new! 


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