In December of 2018, the OCC headed to the Hongmei edition of Vedas for the final meet of the year.Keen OCC watchers will remember that the OCC visited Vedas on Changshu Lu in June of 2017, with it scoring an overall score of 7.3 and earning a much sought-after OCC Approved sticker. With this being the final meet for the year, not only was Vedas Hongmei competing for cross-city bragging rights, but so too was it competing to make a late charge for the coveted 2018 Curry House of the Year (CHOTY) award – watch this space for more news on that front.
Customer care: 7.5
Vedas’s highest score for the evening was customer care – which started before we even arrived at the restaurant. Having booked over the phone, we instantly received a litany of WeChat messages informing us of the address – appreciated by the members, all of whom found the venue on time. Once inside, the staff were warm and welcoming, despite us staying at the restaurant until late on a Thursday night.
t should be noted that the score of 7.5 here is a marked improvement on the Changshu Lu Vedas’ 6.8 from last year, and we commend the management for taking on board our feedback. Service was likewise solid throughout the night; despite it being a weeknight and our table of ten being seated at 8:30pm, staff were always available and ready for our needs.
Along with the customer care and service, the food itself was a real highlight of the evening. We ordered a wide array of starters including onion bhajis, samosas and lamb kebabs, all of which were well-received by members. The main courses of Afghani chicken, palak paneer, Bombay prawn curry and Kadai chicken did not fail to deliver either. In particular, members were especially complimentary to the variety of spices and range of heat on display (described by one enthusiastic member as “outstanding”). Of note was the delectable Bombay prawn curry and the tender Afghani chicken – dishes the OCC heartily recommends to other diners.
Among ten diners, with the meals outlined above and a number of drinks, the final bill came to just over 380 RMB per curry enthusiast. While the food was indeed of a high quality, this was felt by many to be slightly excessive. The size of the curries themselves were also felt to be veering on the small side, all of which lead to a total score of 6.8 for value.
The scores suggest that Vedas’ atmosphere is what let it down slightly. While the venue is indeed well decorated, with its soft red décor echoing that of the Changshu Lu location, the dining room itself is slightly cavernous. This prompted one member to remark that it felt more like a big dining hall than a nice spot for a meal – although we should point out this may also have been due to the relative paucity of fellow dinners late on a Thursday night.
Overall then, driven largely by high quality food and friendly customer care, Vedas Hongmei achieved an overall score of 7.1. While this wasn’t quite enough to snatch bragging rights from its more central location, it does mean it has done just enough to earn itself an OCC Approved sticker. The OCC is happy to recommend the venue to the people of Shanghai.