29th May 2015 – 4pm
Situated in the heart of studentsville and the Fringe, Paradise Palms’ quirky nature helps it fit right into the area. Decorated with an eclectic mix of what can probably only be described as bric-a-brac, this place is not full of airs and graces and wants you to have a good time. A couple of us were able to arrive a bit before the other two, so we decided to avail ourselves of the cocktail list. I was a bit disappointed not to see the frozen margarita which was on the online version of the menu. I actually struggled to find a cocktail I wanted to try as most were either bitter or had some sort of wine in (which I am allergic to). However, my friend found plenty that she could try and I gave one a go. It was a shame there weren’t more fruity type cocktails on the list as this would certainly match the vibe of the place.
Once the other two arrived and ordered drinks, we got on with the important business of ordering some food. Ninja Buns is a street food business which also has a base in Paradise Palms. The menu is relatively short, as you would expect with street food, but everything on the list sounded tasty. I almost went for two things as I couldn’t decide but then spotted that they offered some meal deals, combining a bun with chips and a slaw, so I went for that. I selected pork as my meat of choice and another friend went for the fish finger version. The third diner went for a ninja rice bowl and the last of the group opted for two sides instead – popcorn chicken and fries.
We didn’t have to wait too long for food, and they were all brought out in black bowls and baskets of plastic. I was a bit worried about chip loss through the basket sides but it was all ok. The buns were soft and tasty. The pork wasn’t too dry and there was plenty of filling, including veg. I did find the ginger a little over floral but I think that’s just my personal preference. The chips were nice and plentiful. Two of us had gone for the straight forward salted chips but one went for the seasoned version, which I sampled. These certainly had a kick but were quite tasty. The slaw that came with the buns was probably the best bit. It had plenty of crunch and was slathered in peanut-y goodness. I could have eaten just a massive bowl of that. Everyone seemed to enjoy their food, although there was a difference of opinion on the popcorn chicken. I have to say that whilst the food was ok, it probably works better as a lunch than a dinner, as a few hours later I was a bit hungry again. Maybe a second bun would have helped.
All in all, this is a fun little place and would be worth trying for a bite to eat.
Food – 6/10
Service – 7/10
Atmosphere – 8/10
Value – 9/10
Overall – 30/40
Cost – just over £100 for 8 cocktails, 4 beers, 2 vodka and lemonades, two ninja bun deals, a rice bowl and two sides.