I’ve been vegetarian all my life and have been wheat-and-dairy-free since January, so I understand all too well how difficult it can be to find suitable places that meet the tricky dietary requirements necessary to get your nom on. It is getting easier though, especially in central London. I’m going to start adding only the cafés and restaurants that I really feel are deserving of an alternative recommendation to the London City Guide.
Organic, vegan restaurant Vitao on Wardour Street is a delight to behold. So much so that I couldn’t quite believe I’d never been before. A friend introduced me to the place on a lunch date recently, and it was love at first sight. The restaurant’s decor is charming to say the least. I felt like I’d been transported to a tropical hut (no mean feat in the middle of town), surrounded by plants and gorgeously natural wooden furnishings.
They also home a giant quartz crystal or two, which is a major weak spot of mine. I do love my rocks, so Vitao gets extra brownie points (as if this amazing place really needed them).
We were spoiled for choice with the lunchtime vegan buffet (a.k.a. Vuffet), which included a myriad of rainbow vegetable dishes, noodles, curries, salads and sauces – all delicious. The claim to a “stunning variety of colours and flavours”on Vitao’s website came to life before my eyes as giant pots filled to the brim appeared in the window. My friend and I were so eager to load up our plates that we missed one or two dishes that came out after we’d already began tucking in. I also ordered a crazy beautiful and tasty juice from their extensive drinks menu (an absolute must to accompany your lunchtime Vuffet). I drank it all the way down to the very dregs and then proceeded to scoop out the sweet and earthy seeds that were left behind.
I can sum up the experience in the words of my dining partner who couldn’t contain herself, excitedly exclaiming “Oh god this is so wonderful, my cells are screaming YES!”. I couldn’t agree more; I left feeling comfortably full, completely satisfied and full of energy. This is what real, good nourishment feels like.
Learn more about Vitao.
Discover more alternative venues around town with The Alternative Review’s London City Guide.
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