- Telephone 0131 667 9890
- Seasonal times Dec–Jun: closed Sun.
- Food served Mon–Sat noon–2pm, 5.30–10.30pm. (Also Sun 5.30–10pm Jul–Nov.)
- Average price £8 (set lunch); £15 (evening meal)
- Pre-theatre price £12.95 Thali
- Website www.kalpnarestaurant.com
This review is taken from the 2015 edition.
Still providing inventive, enticing dishes after more than 30 years in the business, Ajay Bhardwaj’s all-vegetarian Kalpna proves there’s far more to authentic Indian cuisine than a chicken korma or lamb jalfrezi. The restaurant’s dishes are often more complex than those of a traditional curry house – a harabhara kebab starter, for example, is delicate paneer and spinach patties with two contrasting sauces, while bateta vada is two subtly flavoured potato cakes with mustard seeds, coriander and ginger. There are generous thalis on offer, as well as a handful of South Indian dosas – a palak paneer is an enormous rice pancake roll filled with spinach, paneer and spices, served with a selection of accompaniments. Homemade dessert highlights include a fragrant cardamom-infused rice pudding and a moreish honey kulfi. Service is speedy and attentive, and the restaurant interior is a welcoming combination of mirror-studded plaster reliefs and Indian knickknacks.
- High point: Inventive and delicious cuisine
- Low point: Tired poppadom pickles don't live up to the delicious tastes elsewhere
- Notable dish: Saam savera paneer cheese-stuffed spinach
- Private dining: Up to 25 covers
- Provides: Vegetarian options (at least ¼ main courses), Gluten-free options, Children's portions, Children's high chairs, Wheelchair access
- Music on stereo: Indian classical music
- Capacity: 50
- Largest group: 50
- Open since: 1982
- Number of wines sold by the glass: 2
- House wine: £15.50 per bottle