When you think of vegan food you might still imagine thick beards, hand-knitted jumpers, and nature lovers, but if that’s all you think of, then you are missing out. Vegan fine-dining offers a meatless alternative if you’re looking for wholesome, healthy food. Vegan restaurants in London are springing up to cater for the growing demand, and these are three of the best.
Black Cat Café
The word vegan came to be in 1944 when Donald Watson cofounded the Vegan Society in Birmingham, so it’s fitting that the UK leads the way when it comes to vegan food. One such establishment is the Black Cat Café. Formerly known as Pogo, this not-for-profit eatery offers very reasonably priced vegan food with ever-changing salads featuring pesto, kale, and beetroot. If you’re after the healthiest fry-up you’ve ever tasted, you may well have hit the jackpot here. Vegusto sausage, tofu scramble, Redwoods “bacon,” mushrooms, beans, and a pancake are combined to make this delicious breakfast. If it’s a bit later in the day, vegan burgers with sweet potato chips hit the spot. You browse the menu for drinks and find a tantalizing array of juices and smoothies including coconut-based orange choc mylk, raspberry soy “milkshake,” and a tempting cola float (made with Fentimans Curiosity Cola). Kid-friendly, this delightful place is also home to hundreds of books should you or your little ones want something to read while you eat.
To the north of the capital and one the most innovative restaurants in London, Itadakizen, on the Kings Cross Road, claims to be Europe’s first organic and vegan restaurant. The food certainly goes a long way to backing up the sentiment: Think sushi, but more elaborate. All the dishes are handmade and the friendly staff actively encourage you to devour everything on your plate! And why wouldn’t you, when the menu offers such delights as Itadaki Cours noodles, tempura with marinated peanuts, Kansei-han Tanno, and Kimpab Chapche? If you’re unsure of what’s what, it’s always a good start to order a bunch of dishes to share with your friends. It’s not just organic and vegan food that Itadakizen takes pride in, as the restaurant also hosts live music and art exhibitions throughout the year.
Just off Regents Street, in the centre of London lies Tibits, a vegetarian and vegan restaurant. At present, they dedicate one day a week to vegan food, but this will surely increase as word spreads of the tasty dishes on the menu like Peruvian Quinoa Tabbouleh, Cauliflower Elaichi, and Leek and Sage Spelt Risotto. And, don’t forget the tempting desserts like the sticky toffee pudding plus apple rhubarb crumble. They’ve even published a recipe book too! Tibits is leading the way for vegan restaurants in London.