For Valentine’s day, my girlfriend and I decided to try a place we’ve been meaning to go to for a while: a vegan restaurant in Newtown called Golden Lotus.
Opened in July 2015, Golden Lotus aims to blend together healthy food and fresh ingredients with a great atmosphere and friendly service.
Their regular menu has a wide assortment of alternative vegan ingredients that will satisfy anyone’s craving however we decided to order their special Valentine’s day menu ($55 for 2 pax). Not only did this keep things very simple for us, it allowed us to sample their most popular dishes.
The restaurant itself is quite small with very limited seating. We were happy we made a booking beforehand as we got seating immediately but others we left out in the cold.
The meal started with an appetiser plate of satay skewers, spring rolls, dumplings and vegan Peking duck. We loved the satay skewers drowned in peanut sauce. They were packed with flavour! My girlfriend usually hates spring rolls but loved these ones as they were filled with corn and peas. The dumplings were fresh and delicious too.
The Peking duck wrap was kept simple with a slice of cucumber and vegan duck. Coupled with the soy sauce and Sriracha, it was a winning combination. Such delicious appetisers which just left us keen for more!
Between the choice of vegan phở and Vietnamese Laksa, we decided to try the laksa. The bowl that came out was huge! Filled with plenty of vegetables, imitation meat and fried tofu knots (my favourite), we couldn’t wait to dig in.
When we mixed the laksa up, we found a mix of vermicelli and imitation “egg” noodles. The soup was very sweet, even sweeter than a Thai laksa, but addictive at the same time. There was so much lemongrass in it! It was laden with ingredients to the point where we were still fishing bits of imitation meat and vegetables when we were drinking the last of the soup.
Our second main course dish was the Eggplant in Claypot with Rice. This came out HOT so we let it sit for a bit while we continued with the laksa but the smell coming from it was intoxicating. We could see plenty of tofu, eggplant, onion and abalone mushrooms.
The claypot was actually a lot deeper than we expected; it made for a huge serving. There was an impressive amount of eggplant and onion in this dish but what set it apart was the light sauce they used. It helped to caramelise everything. The eggplant’s flesh was soft however the skin was caramelised to the point that it soaked up all that sauce. This hotpot was a great experience and we label this a must-get.Best eggplant ever.
For dessert we got Fried Soy Ice Cream with strawberry topping. In the past, my girlfriend has had some bad experiences with fried ice cream so she wasn’t too keen but was game enough to give this one a go. I, on the other hand, waited with glee.
I have to say, this fried ice cream tasted even better than the dairy version. The breading was thick but cooked all the way through so it became almost like a soft cookie enveloping the soy ice cream that really didn’t taste of soy. We actually had trouble putting our finger on what dairy-substitute they used because it was so well done. This dessert changed my girlfriend’s mind about fried ice cream. Her eyes were opened!
As it was Valentine’s day, my girlfriend walked out with a parting gift from Golden Lotus, handed to her by a very nice waiter who wished us a happy Valentine’s day. These sweet and salty biscuits were so light and delicious. Perfect with tea!
What a great way to celebrate Valentine’s day! Great food, electric atmosphere and polite service. I have to say, I think that Golden Lotus is living up to their dream. We’ll definitely be back, especially because it’s so close to the station, to try out more of their delicious menu. We’re still dreaming about that laksa and hot pot!