Since the first vegetarian restaurant opened in England in 1966, the number of plant-based eaters in the UK has risen dramatically. Now vegetarians and vegans looking for a tasty meal in London have a plethora of options to choose from, ranging from Michelin-recommend restaurants to buzzy Soho spots.
If the fact that Vanilla Black is Michelin-recommended does not succeed in spiking your interest and appetite, just take a look at the menu. Featuring foods such as brie ice cream with poached blackberries and double-baked ribblesdale pudding with a smoked croquette, the menu oozes class. These delectable dishes are products of a kitchen that entertains itself and its customers with constant vegetarian experimentation.
True to its Soho location, Mildreds combines the eclectic and the fun. With a no-booking policy, this spot is perennially full and bustling. Once you gain entry to the crowded restaurant, the options promise a culinary trip around the world. The menu features organic ingredients that are supplied by small businesses, so you won’t feel guilty about overindulging.
As a newcomer to the London food scene, there’s a buzz and freshness about Ethos. Despite having opened so recently, Ethos has wasted no time in creating a reputation for itself; it’s as popular with the weekday office crowd as on the weekend. Ethos is a member of the Sustainable Restaurant Association, testament to its good character. The food is served buffet-style, so take a turn around the platters of delicious vegetable-based dishes and load up your plate with every variety of well-made food under the sun, before paying by weight at the till. As if that wasn’t enough, the cocktails are also pretty great.
Woodlands delights in creating exquisite vegetarian Indian dishes. But the food here isn’t just delicious: it’s also incredibly healthy. In fact, the majority of Woodlands’ dishes are made without butter and leave you pleasantly full without being stuffed.
222 Veggie Vegan seeks to be as sustainable as possible in every area. The restaurant prides itself on its fresh, made-to-order dishes, many of which contain low-fat and organic ingredients. If you’re looking for a restaurant that dedicates itself completely to its menu, both in the preparation and the philosophy, then this is the place for you.
Manna deserves a place in the vegetarian hall of fame, as it was the only vegetarian restaurant in England when it opened in 1966 and now boasts an entirely vegan selection. This change, as well as the growing amount of organic options, reflects Manna’s wholehearted commitment to the cause. This restaurant seeks to disprove the argument that vegetarian and vegan cuisine cannot achieve the gastronomic levels that are reached by non-vegetarian food.
This restaurant has established itself as a pioneer in sustainable cuisine, with its avant-garde efforts signalling the way forward for other restaurants to follow. Itadaki Zen was the first vegan and organic Japanese restaurant in Europe, importing the healthy culinary traditions of East Asia, such as the focus on a balanced diet and preventative medicinal habits key to a healthy lifestyle. The restaurant opts for a zen-like ambience that places food at the centre of the experience.