Posted on 10 / 29 / 2014
Of all the places I have been wanting to try in Osaka, this was at the top of my list. Pure-vegan indian food, and operated as a charity to help kids in need back in India...seemed too good to be true. Unfortunately, echoing fellow user JesseD below, I also feel compelled to rate it lower than I want to (but for different reasons).
It isn't because of non-vegan food. Although, I don't know if it is because of JesseD's review or other reasons, but they seem to have acquired almost a paranoia over it, insisting to me on their own over and over with every item they brought out that it was vegan. (In fact, they didn't even seem to hear me, responding to my questions and even my praise of a veg dumpling with the same standard repetition that everything is totally vegan.)
But actually, the problem is just the taste of the food. The curries in particular are just so...bland, and beyond mild. In fact they hardly tasted of any spices at all. The soup was also watery and plain. The fried items were somewhat better, but still, overall, I found the flavours too plain, probably the most bland-tasting curries I ever tried. Compared to my current Tokyo favourite Nataraj Ginza, let alone much spicier places like Vege Herb Saga, there is no comparison. But two great positive things I can say is that the food "felt" good and healthy, and the prices are quite reasonable.
I desperately wanted to like this place more. I still do. But unfortunately the taste just isn't quite there yet. I can recommend it, but there is certainly tastier vegan food available in Japan. Hopefully the recipes can be improved (more spices, especially), and if so, I will be happy to revise this review next time. For now, strictly speaking I think Shama merits a 3, but am bumping it up to a personal 4. I do sincerely wish them success.
Healthful food, Reasonable prices, NGO/Charity