Location: Kohrinbo, Kanazawa
Type: Indian/Nepalese; lunch, dinner
Veg status: vegetarian friendly
Languages: Japanese and English (menus, staff)
Indian cuisine’s wide variety of meatless dishes makes Indian food perfect for vegetarians, and especially so in Japan, as they tend to have vegetarian sections (entire sections!) of the menus. Kanazawa is home to at least five Indian restaurants, and one of my favorites is Aashirwad, an Indian/Nepalese restaurant tucked into the Seseragi shopping area in Kohrinbo (not that far from Dumbo!)
One of the restaurant’s strong points is the variety in the menu. Aashirwad’s vegetarian curry dinner menu is as comprehensive as their chicken, mutton, and fish curry menus. I’m particularly fond of the aloo baigan (potato and eggplant curry), mix vegetable (seasonal vegetable curry), and rajma (red kidney bean curry). Other varieties include chana masala (chickpea curry); daal tadka (lentil and mung bean curry); bhindi masala (okra curry); aloo gobi (cauliflower and potato curry); daal makhani (red kidney beans and mung beans); and saag paneer (spinach and paneer). The restaurant also has a great variety of naan, including some whole-wheat varieties like puri and chapati, and has basmati rice.
The lunch set menu is a pared-down version of the menu, but the six choices for the curry include two vegetarian options.
As for the spiciness, I tend to like a 3 (on a scale of 0-5) (karakuchi, 辛口); my friends often get a 2 (yaya karakuchi, やや辛口). For the record, I like foods that are spicy but that I can still taste.
The staff is very friendly–I know I say that a lot, but I always feel welcomed there, and it’s one of the main reasons why I go there so often. The menu is bilingual with descriptions in Japanese; the staff members are also bilingual. Furthermore, the restaurant is completely non-smoking(!).
Happy first anniversary, Aashirwad! おめでとうございます！
Gyohan Building, 1F
Kanazawa, Ishikawa 920-0961
By car: No parking available. There are paid lots down the street.
By bus: take any bus from JR Kanazawa Station (JR金沢駅) bound for Kohrinbo (香林坊) and get off at Minamicho (南町) or Kohrinbo. Walk around the mall Kohrinbo 109 to the Seseragi Shopping Street (せせらぎ通) and follow the road for ~2 minutes.
By bicycle: There is also plenty of bike parking up the street behind Kohrinbo 109.
Website (menu has not be updated to 2013 menu)
Entries: 850-1200 yen
Drinks: 350-600 yen
More Veg* Out in Kanazawa