Founder Mark Wright – who has already opened Rola Wala in the Trinity Leeds district ‒ is to open at 36 Brushfield Street, and will offer a menu of ‘healthy’, ‘everyday Indian’ food, with dishes of under 500 calories each.
Handmade sourdough naan rolls and seasonal ‘grain bowls’ will feature, and each dish is expected to contain no fewer than 43 ingredients and spices.
Options will include the hot brown rice ‘khicheree’, masala black bean noodles and charred broccoli, the ‘Nagaland’ slow-roasted, Portuguese-Goan lamb with hot naga chilli, the overnight-marinated ‘Rola’s Charred Chicken’ chicken thighs, and the slow-cooked ‘Bengali Spiced Beef’ brisket.
Vegetarian and vegan options will include the ‘Red Dal’ with beetroot, coconut and channa dal and a nine-spice masala; and the ’Keralan Black Chickpea’, with a mix of black ‘kala chana’ chickpeas, coconut, sweet potato, pineapple, and fenugreek, cumin, mustard seeds, and chilli.
Each dish will be available served with a range of homemade chutneys, including the ‘Bombay Sandwich Spread’, and guests will be able to choose their own spice level.
Prices start at £5.95.
Drinks will include Rola Wala’s own mango, lime, and turmeric sodas – made with Hackney soda producers Square Root.
"Our vision is to inspire an authentic generation of fast-food,” says Wright. “It’s about flavour, not heat. We use the hottest [chilli] because it simply has the best flavour, but by using just a small amount of it, the heat is less pronounced."
Décor at the new site will reference the Indian roadside diners from which Rola Wala takes inspiration, and also feature touches from the group’s own experience at festivals and at streetfood markets.
It will include timber cladding, pendant lighting, scaffold polls, and metal shelving stocked with spice jars. The focal point will be a large service counter designed to look like a kitchen, where guests can customise their food.
Rola Wala Spitalfields will continue the partnership with school meal charity One Feeds Two, which is already working successfully at the Rola Wala Leeds site.
Ahead of the Spitalfields opening, Wright is to 'pop-up' the concept at The Griffin pub in Shoreditch.
This ‘kati roll kitchen’ will offer a sharing menu of ‘chapatti kati’ rolls at £5 each, with fillings including the Nagaland lamb with red onion pickle, coriander, yogurt raita, Naga chilli chutney, fried potato matchsticks, fresh mint, and pomegranate seeds.