I still remember a couple years back we checked out Palki on Commercial Drive and really liked it. Fast-forward to current time and they have renamed that restaurant to something else to avoid confusion. And when we were invited to try the North Vancouver location, the nostalgic feeling just came rushing through. We had to say yes.
We started with a couple of appetizers, along with some Papadum. Papadum are crispy lentil wafers, a little bit salty; you can snack on them like chips and it’s quite hard to stop eating them.
The Fish Pakoras were really good! Big fish pieces coated with the chickpea pakora batter and deep fried, yet they were not greasy at all. They didn’t have a crispy exterior like fish and chips but the meat was flaky and very flavourful. The plate came with two dipping sauces: tamarind sauce & a mint, cilantro and green chili sauce. The tamarind sauce added a hint of sweetness to the fish while the mint, cilantro & chili sauce added extra heat. It was quite a big portion for appetizer.
We also ordered some Beef Samosas. Often times we get the vegetarian version so we decided to go for the meat version. It’s Mr’s first time having a meat samosa. According to him, “it’s like the vegetarian samosa but better in every way because of the use of meat.” And there was so much meat! I could use some dipping sauce with it (like the fish pakora above) — and we think the perfect samosa (and we’re probably completely wrong about this concept) is a combination of vegetarian and meat samosas, a perfect balance of minced beef, potatoes and green peas.
For entrees, we loved the Lamb Saagwala. It was different from regular curry, as it’s in a spinach-based cream sauce. The spinach flavour was very prominent, and it almost reminded me of spinach paneer. The lamb cubes were tender and with just a hint of gaminess. My favourite dish of the evening. You would need something to soak up all the sauce. This definitely goes well with rice, but naan would work as well.
Customers at the next table ordered some Chicken Tandoori and it definitely caught our attention. It smelled so good that it made me salivate and order one for ourselves. Didn’t turn out as good as we expected — it still smelled really good as it arrived but the meat was a bit too salty. The dark meat was moist but the white meat was a bit dry.
As for carbs, we went for something different. The Potato Naan was actually regular naan recipe stuffed with spicy potatoes. It’s crispy on the outside but still soft and fluffy inside with the addition of potatoes. It’s almost pancake like. It’s very flavourful and you can eat it on its own.
The Lacchedar Parantha is multi-layered bread. It’s similar to Malaysian roti, but more crisp, less greasy and less rich, in a good way. It has good flavours that you can snack on it, or it goes quite well with saucy dishes as well.
We were already quite full by this point, but how could you say no to dessert?! And they make the desserts in-house! Instead of going for the obvious choice of gulab jamun, we chose the Rasmali, which the manager called it the “Indian cheesecake.” It has a coarser texture than western cheesecake, but with good cheese flavours. Surprisingly it reminded us of gulab jamun, just slightly drier and unfried. The cream sauce had just the right amount of sweetness, so it wasn’t too rich and was just right to finish our meal.
We didn’t order the same dishes as we did at the Commercial Drive location, and we did that on purpose in hopes that we would be equally impressed by a different line up of dishes. And overall, we were. Our palates have also been exposed to more spices and flavourful profiles so to be able to deliver a meal that satisfied us and made us want more, I suggest you pay them a visit and experience it yourself.
Palki Restaurant North Vancouver
116 15th Street E, North Vancouver