Top chef Anthony Bourdain famously once opined that vegetarians are "the enemy of everything good and decent in the human spirit," so it's no wonder that many fine-dining afficiandos might expect to find it difficult to give up meat. But in recent years experts are serving up plenty of reasons for even the most avid gourmet to try a vegan lifestyle, and whether you're looking for a healthier diet or are an aspiring eco-warrior there are more choices than ever before. Vegan fine-dining is no longer the remit of specialist restaurants in far flung corners of the younger fashionable part of London – instead the capital's restaurants are quickly getting in on the act and offering menus to fit every pallette. So, as we start 2018 with Veganuary, we've gathered five of the finest restaurants serving up vegan treats. Read on to find out more. >>
Celebrating its 50th anniversary last year, Manna in Primrose Hill is London's oldest gourmet vegetarian restaurant – and has now become 100% vegan. Executive Chef Robin Swallow is inspired by meat-free cuisine around the world to create delicious dishes that reference London's multi-ethnic culture and her own South Californian background. Don't miss their basil cashew cheese croquettes or the mouth-watering Caribbean platter.
This Michelin-star restaurant by Jason Atherton is known for its fine dining and opulent ambience, but its real claim to fame are the separate menus that effortlessly cater to different tastes and allergies. The vegan menu includes an eight-course tasting option for £75, featuring such dishes as braised broccoli stem with lemon purée, toasted almonds & seaweed and Braised white asparagus with a mushroom salad. The vegeratian menu is equally exciting, as is the cocktail and wine selection.
Great for lunch or dinner, but divine for brunch, this Notting Hill restaurant not only boasts an entirely vegan menu, but is also entirely gluten free and raw food – meaning that all dishes are served under 46°C (115°F). The ultimate in fashionable, guilt-free dining, try their Smorreboard or blueberry pancakes for an indulgent raw meal.
This new vegan restaurant is taking the good-food trend straight into Sloane Square. With a menu packed with fun twists on comfort foods like Green Coconut Curry and Chili Non Carne, its the perfect spot for a weekend lunch. For those with a sweet tooth, we insist on saving some room for dessert – particularly the dairy-free mango and passionfruit cheesecake.
Last but definitely not least, this stylish art deco restaurant is the ideal dinner spot for any diner. The meat-free menus are separated by vegetarian and vegan options, with daring and hearty delicacies including fried shiitake with cous cous to Smoked Soft ‘Cheese’, Black Sesame and Fried Gram Flour. Based in the vibrant east end, Vanilla Black also boasts locally sourced and seasonal ingredients to provide the best of every world – and not a boring pasta bake or veggie curry in sight.