Flyover Fritterie is a popular chai bar and fritterie. It originally started as a lunchtime takeaway venue on Temperance Lane in Sydney's CBD in 2019. Three years later it has now moved to Redfern where the menu and the space are larger. There are a range of fritters and chais (of course) but there are also lots of other vegetarian and vegan dishes on offer. It is also now open for lunch and dinner.
I'd been wanting to visit Flyover Fritterie ever since I read that they had a chai bar. However because I tend to avoid the city because its impossible to park there during the day it wasn't until I heard that they opened up in Redfern that Mr NQN, Teddy and I decided to pay them a visit. Gunjan Aylawadi is the woman behind Flyover Fritterie. She took a rather circuitous route to opening this eatery, "I started my career as a computer science engineer. But I was always interested in the arts and design. After moving to Australia in 2012, I took up a career in the arts. It was great but a lonely pursuit. My longing to be among people and share my culture became a big reason why Flyover happened."
The menu at the city store was takeaway only small with a few types of fritters and chais but with expanded space comes an expanded menu. There are of course a variety of pakoras or fritters but also bowls of food, chaat (a type of Indian savoury snack), jaffles and some lovely sounding chais on their vegetarian and vegan menu. Gunjan describes the menu as, "An attempt to break away from the commonly accepted Indian food norms. Our focus is a little bit naughty (street food) and a little bit nice (everyday food), put together for a fun, nourishing experience!". They recruited chef Dhruv Sadaphal to help carry out their menu vision.
When we arrive there we take a seat at one of the three outside tables. There's another couple outside with their French bulldog. They're a lovely Indian couple from London and we strike up a conversation throughout our meals about dogs, Indian food, Indian beauty treatments and what we're eating.
Thandaai $9.90, Callebaut Chocolate Chai $5.90
The wind has picked up and for that I need a little extra fortifying with the Callebaut chocolate chai that comes perfectly sweetened in a mug with their logo on it. Mr NQN has a Thandaai, a lovely almond milk based drink that doesn't taste like almond milk (that's a compliment) with cardamom, pepper, fennel, poppy seeds, watermelon seeds, chia seeds, saffron & rose. This is sweeter than the chocolate chai but also served cold and could double as a dessert drink.
Mushroom Momos $11.90
Our first bites arrive and consists of steamed mushroom momos. These are hand rolled dumplings filled with shiitake mushroom on a bed of sesame chutney with chilli oil. They're also vegan and quite flavoursome especially wtih the chilli oil.
Winter Greens Chaat $16.90
My favourite dish of the whole meal is the winter greens chaat. Chaat is a category of Indian food that focuses on savoury snacks and are eaten as hors d'oeuvres or found at street stalls. This Winter Greens chaat has crispy seasonal leaves, house papdi, tamarind chutney, yoghurt, fresh mint chutney & grapes. Papdi are deep fried, crisp, small flour crackers that make the base of this chaat up. There is crunch, there is sauce and there are sliced grapes to give this a very appealing sweetness to balance the savoury and sour flavours. I would order this again in a flash.
Chilli Fritters $8.90 2 pieces
The chilli fritters are large green chilies in a batter and deep fried. They're not bad although I think the winter green chaat is a hard act to follow. Which brings me to the fritters. Gunjan describes their place in everyday Indian life, "Fritters/ Pakora/ Bhajiya are India's most common street snack. They are sold at every street corner. We eat them as midday snacks or as part of a larger meal. And they're especially popular during monsoons when fritters and chai is just a done thing! They're always fried freshly, and use the best of seasonal produce, battered with chickpea flour to make them. The seasoning on the fritters is 'Chaat Masala' which is a blend of freshly roasted spices to elevate snacky foods." That chaat masala seasoning is gorgeously addictive and mouth watering.
Tofu Tikka Jaffles $23.90 Paneer Tikka +$1.90
Some of the items on the menu are on the pricier side and the toastie is one of them because to me a jaffle over $20 is a challenge to sell but this one does come with two fritters on the side. The jaffle is filled with grilled spicy paneer (or tofu if you're vegan), capsicum, onions and tikka masala sauce. It comes with 2 seasonal fritters, mint & tamarind chutney. This is a nice jaffle and I do like the filling and dip it into the tamarind and mint chutneys on the side. All of the mains do come with two fritters of your choice and this one comes with an sabudana/tapioca fritter which is soft and moist inside as well as an onion fritter or pakora. I especially love the chaat masala seasoning on the fritters which is bright and savoury. The fritters are also gluten free as they are made with chickpea flour and then deep fried.
Buttery Black Daal Khichri $24.90
We are sharing one main which is the buttery black daal khichri which is a daal made with both rice and lentils. This version has urad daal or black lentils, basmati rice and quinoa. Its rich and creamy textured with a really wholesome and tasty blend of flavours and textures from the mixture of rice and grains and I really like the quennelle of fenugreek butter on top that melts into t he bowl once stirred. This also comes with two fritters (onion and silverbeet) and a little pot of mustardy cauliflower & carrot pickle,
Sea Salt Besan Laddoo $4.90
It's dessert time and alas the chocolate Guhiya pastry is unavailable so we try the two other items. The Ladoo is a North Indian sweet made with besan or chickpea flour with cardamom, pepper, seasalt and ghee and is a great snack to have with your chai with the sweetness tempered with the salt.
Rose Cardamom Kheer $11.90
Mr NQN's request was the kheer or rice pudding served cold and flavoured with saffron, cardamom and a judicious amount of sweetness to it. On top are rose petals and almonds which he happily finishes tapping the bottom of the glass with his spoon for every last bit.
So tell me Dear Reader, do you ever end up talking with nearby tables? What do you think of the food here?
80-88 Regent Street Redfern, NSW
Open 6 days 12am-9pm (9:30pm Friday and Saturday)