Located in the capital city of Alberta, the province that produces half of Canada’s beef, Noorish is a restaurant serving vegetarian and vegan dishes. It is also a yoga studio, retail store, and teaching kitchen.

I decided to order a raw dish, which I had never had. Spaghetti n’ Meatballs consisted of kelp noodles in a sundried tomato sauce, fresh basil, Brazil nut “parmesan” and a walnut-zucchini crumble, served with mixed greens and black pepper vinaigrette. The salad was pedestrian, but the kelp noodles were different. Refreshing to be sure, but hardly reminiscent of the comfort food it is supposed to be modelled after. The tomato sauce did little more than stain the noodles, so nuttiness was the dominant flavour. The “meatballs” were skimpy relative to the pasta, and too salty in comparison.
My significant other had the vegan and gluten-free Pad Thai: stir-fried rice noodles and seasonal greens in an almond-satay sauce with crushed almonds, green onions, lime and vegan fish sauce. The dish was tasty though indistinguishable from any number of other vegetarian or vegan pad thais. The house made chilli oil on the side lacked heat or flavour. The optional “Vegan Chicken” had a dry and crunchy skin, though it had an amazing realistic chicken texture underneath.

Based on positive online reviews, two of my friends ordered the Buddha Bowl featuring a green coconut curry with select vegetables, basil, toasted almonds, cilantro and lime on quinoa. They seemed pleased with the dish, but I thought the curry was too watery, making it more of a soup than a sauce.

Noorish has some interesting ideas on its menu, but the execution could use some refinement.

★ ★.5

Noorish, 8440 109 Street NW, Edmonton, Alberta

Dined July 2014 – Junggugeo Kaenada

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