Pure Vegetarian is a small shop in Market Plaza Food Court off Moonta St in Adelaide’s Chinatown. They serve your basic bain-marie based Asian fare with one big difference. It’s all vegan! Pure also don’t use any garlic or onion in their food.
The food is pretty basic. You get a choice of white rice, brown rice, fried hokkien or fried rice noodles as a base then you can choose 2 or 3 dishes to go on top. If you choose 3 dishes you get a free soya drink, served hot or cold (I prefer cold). Soya drink is basically weak soy milk with sugar in it, surprisingly yummy.
This time around I got fried hokkien, vegetarian fish, tofu and spiced eggplant. The “fish” is soy wrapped in seaweed and is quite nice (even better when the server remembers to put on the soy sauce based dressing that goes with it). Tofu is mildly flavoured, but nice, with carrot and broad beans in the sauce. The eggplant I hadn’t tried before and I wont be ordering again as it was so spicy I had to spit it into my napkin.
Other toppings I have tried are the sweet and sour gluten which has a slightly weird texture but the sauce is lovely and the addition of small cubes of potato is lovely. I also like the green beans which, if you’re lucky, had bits of soya sheet in it. Soya sheet is layered soy which tastes a bit like chicken skin, in my opinion.
As well as the meal deal fare Pure also does curry puffs and desserts. They have bright green sago pudding and my personal favourite silken tofu and sweet black sticky rice. Yummo!
Food: Pretty standard. A nice variety, but often a tad greasy. Good flavors. 3/5
Setting: Horrendous. It’s in a big, noisy, dirty food court and if you go during peak hour (weekday lunch or Friday dinner) it’s near impossible to find a set. 1/5
Service: Not bad. Staff are polite and speak okay English. Due to the noise and the fact that I’m short I tend to use pointing to choose my dishes. 4/5
Overall: To be honest the reason I go here regularly isn’t about fine cuisine or the setting it’s convenience and value for money. A plate with 3 dishes plus the free drink is under $9 and they load the plate up. Some servers put more in a serve than others but you always get value for money. 3/5