Fast food is always a bit of a strange subject for me; do I love it? Yes. Is it the best thing for when you’re feeling sad? Damn straight. Would I spend my last £1.00 on fries? …probably.
However, is it healthy? Generally, no. Are there many meat/dairy/gluten free options? Unfortunately, not. Is there a certain feeling of guilt that comes after eating 6 mozzarella sticks? …definitely.
Also, trying to find any fast food place that serves vegetarian or vegan food at a reasonable price without it being a damn bean burger is like trying to find a needle in a haystack.
Then, there’s Chaiwalla. Chaiwalla takes that non-inclusive, unhealthy haystack, burns it to the ground and hands you a bright shiny needle in the form of delicious, mostly vegan street food that doesn’t cost the earth. No bean burgers to be found.
From their fresh samosas and curry to their onion bhaji and falafel wraps, there is nothing on that menu that I couldn’t eat. Literally. Everything on their menu is either vegetarian, vegan or gluten free.
All of the food is cooked and prepared to order in front of you in their mini restaurant (there's one seat), that's more like a street food van in size.
Everything about it screams independent - in the best way. Even the décor is beautifully designed with chalkboards displaying their menu and colourful fabrics hung on the wall. The whole restaurant smells and looks as good as their food tastes.
It really is no surprise that locals and travellers alike flock to Chaiwalla and queue outside of their tiny door whether rain or shine.
Our wraps were delicious; the crispy salad, zingy yoghurt and juicy mango chutney perfectly complementing our choice of filling (onion bhaji for Izaac and falafel for me!) and the samosa we shared afterwards (there goes the healthy) was the perfect mix of fillings and not a single bit of soggy pastry.
In short, it was one of my favourite lunches I’ve had a while. Fresh food, taken away to be enjoyed on a bench by the beautiful Bath Abbey, watching the world go by over a samosa. If anyone can think of a better way to spend an hour I would love to hear it
Full disclosure, sitting on a bench made it rather difficult to get good photos of these beautiful wraps without dropping the contents everywhere, so the pictures definitely don't live up to the quality of the food.
In my opinion, every lunch should be like this; freshly prepared, handmade food, served up quickly and at a great price. There’s even the option of delivery, perfect for work lunches in the area.
Next time you find yourself in Bath looking for something quick, easy and different for lunch, hit up Chaiwalla; you will not regret it. That’s a Cotswold Eats Guarantee*.
*Not actually a thing, we're not responsible if you somehow don't enjoy the food!