Clinging close to the imposing Hamilton House building, like a beautiful sea anemone on a rock, lies a tiny, colourful treasure trove, waiting for you to dive in and discover it. The name of this sparkly diamond? Chai Walla. Its goal? Delivering delicious, authentic Indian street food to the people of Bristol, for staggeringly good prices.
Founder Niraj first opened Chai Walla as a pop-up in Bath, where the addictively sweet, spicy tang of classics such as Samosa Chaat proved so popular that the Niraj is now in permanent residence. Luckily for us Bristolians, Niraj decided to spread his proverbial wings, fluttering down into Stokes Croft like an angel from heaven. Here, Chai Walla bursts out of its tiny building, an explosion of beautiful colours, fabulously decorated interiors, excellent music, and the tantalising smell of bloody lovely food, mingling with incense. It's run by two of the friendliest, smiliest people we've ever met - Mel and Ricardo. They greet every customer liking an old friend, and you can't help but leave Chai Walla feeling bolstered by their infectious grins and positive enthusiasm for life.
The food over at Chai Walla is also guaranteed to put a spring in your step -
think hearty, moreish, authentic Indian street food dishes that are fresh, zingy, and vibrant. Niraj's mum still makes and delivers homemade curries directly to the premises, and all samosas and bhajis are fried fresh when you order. The menu is small but perfectly formed - think samosa chaat, colourful salads, and falafel or onion bhaji wraps (yes, dreams really can come true). Everything is vegan too - make sure you don't miss the gorgeous oat milk chai. The best bit? If you bring back your empty plastic boxes when you're finished, you can nab yourself a FREE onion bhaji!