Back in April, for my birthday, my boyfriend Pete treated me to a weekend away in my birthplace, the city of Bath. The entire weekend was planned out, right down to where we would be eating, so I actually have him to thank for both of the places I’m about to talk about – and they are certainly both worth talking about.
Heading to two meat-free restaurants in one day is something of a dream come true for me and a luxury I usually only get if I’m travelling/dining with a fellow veggie. Both places we visited had vegan options making it easy for me to be vegan in Bath, which was even better! I’d love to hear more about what else Bath has to offer vegetarians and vegans, so let me know of anywhere you’d add to the list!
Green Rocket Café | vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free optionsThe newest addition to Bath’s meat-free scene, Green Rocket Café is a light and airy informal dining spot. They open during the day midweek for breakfast and lunch, then stay open right through to the evening too on Thursday, Fridays and Saturdays. They also offer a takeaway option if you wanted to hop over the road to the Parade Gardens for a picnic.
The vast majority of the mains here are vegan or have a vegan option available. I went with the Sesame Ramen Noodles with lime satay and crispy tofu (vegan) while Pete ordered the Mushroom, Sundried Tomato and Basil Rice Burger with halloumi (vegetarian). Both made for a perfect light lunch and the tofu on mine was cooked to perfection. Their cakes come highly rated too but we held off (sadly).
All in all, I thought this was a great lunch spot with a good variety of options.
Acorn Vegetarian Kitchen | vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free options
Located in one of Bath’s oldest buildings (it dates all the way back to 1622 – that gives you a bit of a timescale on the city!), Acorn serves up modern vegetarian and vegan cuisine. Their approach to cooking is to draw the flavours from the vegetables they use and the result is an accomplished range of complex flavours you are rarely served up as a herbivore. The contemporary decor, based around wood and muted tones, has a subtle nod to their organic roots without being too, well, earthy.
To begin, we were served a portion of sourdough bread with olive oil and a very tasty serving of ground nuts to dip them in. We decided to also order a dish of lightly oiled, flavourful mixed olives to share in place of a starter; since I already had my eye on the desserts I wanted to make sure I saved space. For my main, I ordered the Cauliflower Fritter served with garlic dahl, crispy kale, cumin cauliflower and tamarind & raisin purée (vegan and gluten-free). Pete opted for the Smoked Field Mushrooms glazed in rich mushroom demi-glaze with potato gallette, salt baked celariac purée and market greens.
As you can tell from the list of components in each, Acorn do a fantastic job of creating two or even three very different flavours from the same vegetable and serving them together flawlessly – there’s no chance of being bored here. Both dishes were full of flavour, yet each individual flavour stood out in its own right.
Fully satisfied, but eagerly anticipating dessert, next up for me was the Salted Chocolate Tart with peanut butter sorbet (vegan) and, for Pete, the Compressed Cheddar Strawberries with pine nut parfait, shredded basil and pepper (vegan, gluten-free). Sometimes a dark chocolate tart can be too rich for me, but this one was perfected tempered by the slight saltiness that cut through the cocoa and kept it a bit fresher on the palate. I’m not sure even need to tell you that the peanut butter sorbet was perfection in an icy ball. The strawberry dessert was on the complete opposite end of the taste spectrum with the almost jelly-like strawberries and fragrant pine nuts and basil. To be honest, I’ve no idea what had been done to the strawberries but I’ve never tasted ones like it before.
Overall, Acorn Vegetarian Kitchen was a breath of fresh air and a perfect example of what creative plant-based cooking should look like.
Have you been to any great plant-based restaurants lately or have any tips for being vegan in Bath? Share you recommendations!