When Crane Street Wine Cafe closed in Salisbury, I was really disappointed because it was my favourite restaurant in Salisbury. However, when I saw a sign in the window of the empty premises to say that an Indian Street food restaurant serving craft beers was coming there, my disappointment was quieted!
Last weekend, we finally managed to get a babysitter and went to the newly opened Diwali Cafe for supper. I'd tweeted them beforehand and was delighted when they responded - it's always a good sign that you're going to get good service. And, we certainly did, with excellent, attentive service throughout the meal.
The general layout remains similar to Cranes, but the décor has been refreshed with brighter paintwork and an Indian vibe. We were seated out in the conservatory area and I was pleased to see that the outdoor seating area also remains, it's a lovely sun trap in the summer.
The waiter came over to help talk us through the bijoux menu. Explaining that the menu was deliberately small, with the intention for them to update it every 3 months.
We started by ordering the mini poppadums which were a real treat. I love poppadums anyway, but they tend to be the same in most Indians with similar pickles. Well, not at Cafe Diwali. The mini poppadums come in a variety of flavours - some a bit more spicy, some with caraway seeds. And the pickles were delicious.
For our starters, I had the Mini Raj Kachori which were stuffed Panipuri (kind of a fried, crisp batter) and were super pretty and very tasty. My husband had the Fish Amritshari which were slightly spiced, fried fish goujons. Everything was very good indeed. As were our mains of whole tandoori sea bream and tandoori kebab platter.
As advertised, they also served a wide range of craft beers and a small selection of wines and spirits. I also noticed on their website that they have a kid's menu and a Sunday brunch menu.
Overall, I was really impressed and we will definitely be returning. A nice alternative to the other Indians in Salisbury and in a nice, cafe environment. Yum! I wish we had more independent places like this in Salisbury. It wasn't mega busy in there, so I'd really encourage you to give it a try.