It was in the midst of a heated debate with my partner (whilst stuck in traffic on the M6) that I decided “I’m getting off at the next junction and eating, find me a nice place” Knowing very well that Walsall is not blessed with many vegetarian options. It was only by chance that we come across Chalo at The Alma Inn in Walsall. I’m still arguing with my partner, but deep down I’m grateful she found this little gem.
Location: Chalo @ The Alma Inn is situated a mere 3 minutes drive from Junction 10 of the M6, Bescot Stadium is the nearest football ground, which is approx. 10 minutes drive away back down the M6, or 12-15 minutes away via Walsall itself.
Appearance: The Alma Inn, seems to just appear out of nowhere amongst a set of terraced houses , it is a large and impressive looking building, it is well lit and we park on the main street as the the car park itself is quite full, but we are right outside the venue.
Upon walking in we are greeted by a fantastically well lit venue, which is spacious, clean and very well maintained, we are informed that ‘Chalo’ has only recently opened, it is superb inside, very spacious, and the staff ensure we are seated very swiftly. Check out the video above of the venue for a better overview of Chalo.
Food: Neither me or my partner are meat eaters so along with the two friends we were with we ordered the following , enjoy the review:
Veggie Mixed Grill: This as a starter was sufficient, it is on a par with other Veggie grills we have had, nothing really amazing about this, the tofu stood, but overall it just lacked that kick of something to make it special.
Meat Free Chicken Curry: This was impressive, it was cooked well, flavoured well and an impressive portion size, the stand out thing about this was the meat alternative, it had been cooked very well, the sauce had marinated well into the chunks and it was a great dish.
Meat Free Keema: Spicy, very spicy, this took us by surprise, but we are fans of spice so we did enjoy it, flavoured well and the soya which has been used as the lamb alternative is very very impressive.
Punjabi Aubergine Curry: Well we are partial to a good old Bangan, though and unfortunately for Chalo, I compare most Bangan offerings to my mothers cooking, and this though good was not as good. This was possibly the weakest of the dishes , not poor,just nothing special about it unlike the previous two, which set the bar high.
Conclusion: Chalo @ The Alma Inn surprised us, it was a great find, we were made to feel welcome, and we enjoyed our time here. The customer service was impressive, and we felt like we were in a different location and not Walsall.
The place is very new and has a lot going for it, plenty on offer for meat lovers and as we were informed by one of our servers more veggie/vegan dishes will be added to the menu in the coming months. The open kitchen is another plus point, we could have watched them cook all our dishes, and veggies please note, no dishes were mixed, another big win.
We are always travelling up and down the M6 and now we have a great reason to get off at Walsall to break the journey up, well done guys see you very soon, highly recommended.