Vanilla Black cookbook: Fresh Flavours for your Vegetarian kitchen: Andrew Dargue. 


  

‘To us the fact our cooking is vegetarian is incidental. We just like to eat good food. We love to reinvent classic dishes, create new flavours combinations, source unusual ingredients and occasional we use is microwave because , well why not’

Fifteen months ago Ruth (a meat eater) requested to visit London vegetarian restaurant Vanilla Black. This was around my birthday, and on a cold January night whilst staying in London we did. 

That in itself is the appeal of Vanilla Black, non vegetarians love eating there too. 

In fact we visited again last year, my blog was only a couple of months old. We went on this occasion for lunch, on a Friday and the restaurant was packed. 

I can safely say that Vanilla Black is one of the reasons I began my blog. It’s beautiful vegetarian dishes captured us on that Cold January  night, warming the cockles of our heart, and inspired me to pursue setting up my crazy veggie blog, and to begin the journey of trying to change and influence the veggie dining scene to be as interesting and thoughtful as this small experimental kitchen demonstrated it could be. 

My review from last year is here:

http://vegiefoodie.com/2014/06/13/vanilla-blacks-a-slice-of-veggie-heaven/

  
So when I received a complimentary advanced copy from Andrew Dargue (head chef) and publishers Saltyard books i was thrilled. Thank you. 

Vanilla Black has a mission ‘to reinvent expectations About what it means to eat vegetarian food. It’s all about the flavour, the first bite that intrigues, the surprising, the unusual’.

The recipes in the cookbook are intriguing and  look delicious. They can be made by home cooks, and adapted for the home kitchen. They follow some of the advanced textures and flavours of the restaurant food, smashing stereotypes, the intriguing and delicious. Something simple, something technical, to cook their food is to have fun. 

So dishes such as Jerusalem Artichoke, white wine and thyme pie, Savoy cabbage pudding, to broad bean and lemon cheesecake and parsnip cake with Horlicks frosting and a reinvention of tomatoes on toast, make intriguing inspired recipes. 

The book is beautifully photographed and their should be something for everyone in the book. 

The point in many ways is that Vanilla Black is not just for vegetarians, and neither is its cookbook. Andrew is a talented chef that is keen to expand the horizons of vegetarian cooking and bring it to the modern palette. 

Unusual combinations which challenge the norm. 

When you’ve tried the cookbook, try the restaurant and savour The Ribblesdale cheese Pudding if it’s on offer. 

   
     

So finally apologies from Andrew and his partner Donna (who runs front of house) there will be no pasta bake or veg curry, only beaufifully presented food and now a beautifully presented and enticing cookbook. 

Give it a try. 

Just for National Vegetarian Week. 

Vanilla Black is in London in Tooks Court. 

http://www.vanillablack.co.uk/

http://twitter.com/vanillablack1

Thanks for reading. 

Andy 😊

Disclosure: Though I received an advanced copy of the Vanilla Black cookbook I wasn’t asked to write a positive review or put any post on my blog. I’ve done so as its a good cook book and its National Vegetarian Week. 


Gayani’s Kitchen: Sri Lankan Vegetarian Delights, Supper Club 12th June 2015. 


If like me you’ve not been to a Supper Club before, due to the lack of Vegetarian dishes on offer, then fear not as Gayani’s Kitchen is providing a Vegetarian Supper Club on Friday 12th June. Gayani cooks Sri Lankan food and from the comfort of her home you can enjoy this little found  (in Birmingham anyway) cuisine. 

Sri Lankan food has its influences in Colonial powers, foreign traders, and the Kerala region of India. The island has a history as a spice producer so dishes reflect that. 

Gayani cooks mostly indigineous vegetarian dishes. The foreign influenced food has mostly meat and fish in it. 

Tickets are priced at £20 per person and can be booked via her website: 

Here:

http://gayanisgoldustkitchen.com/supper%20clubs.html

http://gayanisgoldustkitchen.com/index.html

Gayani also provides cookery workshops for £20 pp for groups of 4  or more. 

Gayani also has her own curry powder called Gold Dust that can be ordered via her website. 

http://www.gayanisgolddustkitchen.com

Thanks for reading

Andy 😊

@Gayani2Gayani

   

Banana blossoms curry

  

Lentils, and coconut salad, green beans

  

Beetroot curry, lentils, curry bean baddum, and spicy green Mallum. 

  

Mix veg mild curry, cooked in coconut milk.

  

Green mango curry

  

Cassava with coconut sambol.

 

Gotukola herb, snake beans curry. Banan blossoms Badum and coconut Sambal and rice.

  
Mushroom curry. 

All photos courtesy of Gayani’s Kitchen. With thanks. 

National Vegetarian Week 18th-24th May 2015.


  
This week, the 18th-24th May is National Vegetarian Week. 

National Vegetarian week 2015 is organised by the Vegetarian Society and sponsored by ‘Nothing But’. This year the theme is all about sharing and enjoying delicious veggie food with your friends, family, colleagues, neighbours, and community. It’s a great way to connect with those around you and explore tasty meat-free food together. 

Vegetarian food is vibrant, exciting and flavourful. Whether using the freshest ingredients, from the supermarket, farmers market, or from your garden, or eating out, good meat free food is getting easier to find and is great to cook. Meat-free food benefits the environment, animals and yes your health and well being. 

Some Restaurants and individuals are all doing their bit to promote and celebrate the week. 

In the UK a national pizza tour is taking place. The Vegetarian Society is visiting seven cities (but not Birmingham) creating and delivering pizzas to share.  So watch pizza being  made, and help choose the toppings. 

For the seven locations see below: 

http://www.nationalvegetarianweek.org/
Or 

  
To find out more about the week and how you can get involved see the below link for National Vegetarian Week. 

http://www.nationalvegetarianweek.org/
In Birmingham, try out vegetarian restaurants Warehouse Cafe, Bistro 1847, Veg Out Cafe, Deepalis, Jyoti, or Mr Singh’s, or try a veggie dish on any menu for a change. 

In Sutton Coldfield Moor Hall Hotel and Spa ‘Veges out’ for National Vegetarian Week. 

Moor Hall Hotel & Spa in Sutton Coldfield is inviting customers to join in a delicious and fun celebration of vegetarian food as part of National Vegetarian Week, which runs from 18th – 24th May. 

Now in its 23rd year, National Vegetarian Week is organised by the Vegetarian Society to promote delicious and inspirational vegetarian food.

There are always plenty of choices for vegetarians at Moor Hall’s restaurants and whether you have been a vegetarian for some time or you would like to try a meat free meal, the hotel is well worth a visit during the week as there is 20% off all vegetarian dishes from the Oak Room and Terrace & Bar menus. The dishes on offer include starters such as warm walnut encrusted goats’ cheese with baby leaves and main courses such as pea, mint & feta risotto or warmed halloumi cheese with lime, pine nuts and a tomato fondue.

Head Chef, Charlotte Foster commented “National Vegetarian Week is a fantastic opportunity to try going meat-free for a change. At Moor Hall we take great pride in producing a variety of creative and tasty vegetarian dishes that meat eaters will enjoy too, so we hope our special offer will encourage more customers to give our vegetarian dishes a try.”


National Vegetarian Week 2015 is organised by the Vegetarian Society. 

Monday 18th is also Meat Free Monday, and Cafe Opus at the Ikon Gallery have a meat free Monday menu every week. 

Also The Plough in Harborne have a weekly specials board of Vegetarian dishes. 

   

  

 https://theploughharborne.co.uk/ 

https://www.vegsoc.org/

https://www.vegsoc.org/wmidsgroups

Thanks for reading. 

Andy 😊

The information on Moor Hall Hotel is courtesy of Moor Hall Hotel and their PR department I was not required to write about their contribution to this week but chose to. 

http://www.moorhallhotel.co.uk/



Bistro 1847: National Vegetarian week 18-24th May, 50% discount booked via Veggie Foodie 0n Spring A La Carte menu. 


This week the 18th-24th May is National Vegetarian week. 

By reserving a table via Veggie Foodie you can save 50% on the Spring A La Carte menu for this week only. 

Bistro 1847 are offering 2 courses including wine for £17 and 3 courses including wine for £21. 

Book here via the link below. 

https://widget.resdiary.com/CheckAvailability.aspx?Id=5220&theme=bistromanchester&channel=VEGIEFOODIE

The deal is available: 

Sunday-Thursday-lunch and dinner

Friday and Saturday lunch and early evening 5pm-6.45pm.

Please note Sunday lunch is available on a Sunday. 

Wine can be substituted with beer or a soft drink. 

Also Bistro 1847 are offering 2-1 cocktails 17.00-19.00 Monday-Friday plus 12-00-17.00. 

   
  

 Halloumi/Tofu, mushy pea emulsion, lemon curd, sea herb. 

Bistro 1847 is a Vegetarian restaurant located in The Great Western Arcade in Birmingham City Centre. Its opposite Snow Hill Station and within an arcade that is known for its independent shops. 

Named after the year The Vegetarian Society (who organise National Vegetarian Week) was formed, 1847 aim to serve exceptional and innovative Vegetarian British Food alongside an array of tempting cocktails, mocktails, beer, wine and spirits. 

With a leaning to creating good innovative dishes, using foraged and locally sourced ingredients its a restaurants that makes me proud to be a vegetarian. The dishes are innovative and intricately created and presented, 

Voted the Best Vegetarian Restaurant outside London, dining at Bistro 1847 is a real experience for vegetarians, vegans and meat eaters alike. 

Modern, fresh and natural. 

To celebrate National Vegetarian week and the abundance of fresh produce that is available Bistro 1847 has launched its new Spring Menu. 

The first under new head chef Tony.

For Reservations with the discount 
Book Here via this link:

https://widget.resdiary.com/CheckAvailability.aspx?Id=5220&theme=bistromanchester&channel=VEGIEFOODIE

For menu see below link. 

http://by1847.com/menus/new-menu-feb-2015.pdf

I’ve previously reviewed Bisto 1847 on Veggie Foodie on a couple of occasions. For a taste and my thoughts see links below. 

http://vegiefoodie.com/2014/06/01/bistro-1847-homemade-and-british/
http://vegiefoodie.com/2014/12/01/tastychristmasmorsal-bistro-1847-christmas-menu-launched/

The photos below are from my previous visits to Bistro 1847. 






For reservations Book Here via this link for more than 25% off. 

https://widget.resdiary.com/CheckAvailability.aspx?Id=5220&theme=bistromanchester&channel=VEGIEFOODIE

Cocktails at Bistro 1847

   
 

Thanks for reading 

Andy 😊

Bistro 1847, 26 Great Western Arcade, Birmingham B2 5H

Twitter: @bistro1847

Facebook: Bistro-1847-Birmingham

Bistro 1847’s new look:

   
   

   
  

 

For details of Bistro 1847’s Kickstarter campaign to open a restaurant in Liverpool see below. 

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1699484970/lets-bring-1847-to-liverpool

Bar Opus: Snow Hill, Birmingham.


    Bar Opus is the youngest sister in the Opus family that includes Opus on Cornwall Street and Cafe Opus at the Ikon Gallery. 

The other week Ruth and I were invited by Anne Tonks of Opus along to try out some of their vegetarian options. 

Bar Opus is at No’ 1 Snowhill in Birmingham City Centre, a new complex behind Snow Hill Station that is next to the new Midland Metro team line which should be complete shortly. It has a nice terrace that is primed for Summer and its reincarnation into something more uber cool in the forthcoming months, imagine those long cocktails, bar snacks and lazy afternoons. It’s a sun trap in the day and a lunch time favourite. 

In fact Bar Opus is very continental with its open kitchen and smart decor. Inside its modern, stylish, and has slick lines, in its simple design. It has cosmopolitan floor to ceiling windows, and is filled with thoughtful touches like its internal Parisian like clock face, and it’s well lit interior. With a mix of bar stool seating and low bearing tables it lends itself equally to drinking and eating. 

The menu a mixture of bar snacks/plates  to eat with those delicious handcrafted cocktails or quality wines or as a starter. 

Bar Opus has an extensive Breakfast and all day menu and more substantial dishes for lunch time indulgence. The sharing bar plates are varied and with good vegetarian options is one of the best places for informal veggie dining in the city. 

   

     
The Opus family of restaurants have a real skill in making simple ingredients and dishes taste well above the average, and it’s in their ingredient led principles where the flavours begin. The produce though is only half the story, it still has to be cooked and created into an irresistible dish which Bar Opus do well, simplicity in itself. 

For example our Asparagus, and Hollandaise from their specials menu was cooked perfectly, the dish sang and I feel may not be beaten this Asparagus season, it had a beauty of flavour, creamy, every element cooked perfectly, a real delight. Simple but hard to do in the wrong hands.

   
 

To follow I tried the homemade flatbread with daily vegetarian special. The flatbread, again perfectly indulgent, not over cooked, light, fluffy, with a delicious red onion jam which gave a punch to the dish and combined with feta worked perfectly. Plus, in its generous size makes a good starter alone or generous sharing plate to tear between friends.

To finish our meal I ate the Shashouka Hash, a very popular dish on their all day menu, and one that makes a lovely brunch or lunch dish too. Wilted Greens, rich vine tomato compote, potato cake, and fried egg. The fresh ingredients again shine through, the egg perfectly runny, the tomatoes full of flavour, lifted the dish from heaven to the space that surely must be above that in the veggie foodie world. Warming potatoes and the wilted buttery greens, completed the dish, which I think is a vegetarian must when visiting Bar Opus to eat. Again a simple dish brought to ex halted heights due to the quality of ingredients and the quality of the cooking. 

   
   

The Shashouka Hash

  
 

The vegetarian Flatbread. 

Yet, Bar Opus isn’t just about the food, but also the cocktails and a fantastic wine list. 

I tried on the night a beautiful Smoked Negroni. Now a negroni always reminds me of Italy. Lazy evenings in Florence, Rome or Venice. Though I’d never had a smoked variety which came to the table theatrically smoking and yes winking at me. It was delicious, part gin, part vermouth, and then Campari. I think Bar Opus make the best Negroni in the city and if like me you love this drink, then try it here. It’s an aperitif, and a classic. 

Ruth and I also loved the glasses of Pinot Gris we had with our food. From New Zealand, Dr Renwick, it was light, and complimented the informality of the food perfectly. Lovely. 

Bar Opus also have a good selection of beers, craft ales and real ale. 

The service throughout was excellent, and was warm, attentive and consistent throughout. 

   
     

Bar Opus is a smartly appointed bar with trendy background music and at times an office like clientele, but don’t let that put you off. 

It’s sophistication is in doing the simple things well. A mixologist that knows a cocktail from, well, a cocktail. A chef that knows how to get the best out of well sourced seasonal ingredients and creates delicious simple dishes that  make you feel hungry even though you may not be. So be tempted. 

Though the cocktails are the pull, the ace on top the pack of cards is the food, a thoughtful concept, and a gentle buzz, a European bar after work, but please don’t tell David Cameron because he may close it down, European Moir…for vegetarians its up their with the best Birmingham can offer, good dishes made well, decent choice, well made, sound drinks. 

And with the Summer approaching a place to chill outside and take in the sun, hopefully. 

Bar Opus is an all day venue that you may not leave, I like it, so do others, it’s the city bar redefined. 

Now where are my Euros. 

Bar Opus, One SnowHill, Birmingham, B4 6GH. 

0121-289-3939

http://baropus.co.uk/

http://baropus.co.uk/eating/

My previous review of Bar Opus. 

http://vegiefoodie.com/2014/11/07/bar-opus-launch-for-breakfast-lunch-and-after-5pm-fun/

@baropus: Twitter

We were invited to Bar Opus to review some of their vegetarian dishes. Our food was complimentary, but we paid for our own drinks. My review is independent of the invite and is honest and carries my own opinions as always. 

Thanks to Ann for the invite and Sam and Gail for their service and passion for their menus. 

Thanks for reading. 

Andy 😊

Twitter: @andydhare

   
 

Colmore Food Festival: Friday 3rd July and Saturday 4th July. Birmingham City Centre. 


    

The fifth annual Colmore Food Festival is back in July and will showcase the superb food and drink offering in Birmingham’s business quarter, Colmore Business District (CBD).

25 venues, the majority of which are independent businesses, will be serving taster options priced at just £3 in Birmingham’s Victoria Square on Friday 3rd July and Saturday 4th July  11am-19.00 and is free of charge. 

This year sees three new independent CBD venues taking part in the festival, as well as the return of some of the district’s finest eating and drinking establishments, where visitors can sample an array of mouth-watering internationally inspired cuisines as well as traditional British options including many Vegetarian choices. Alongside the varied food offering will be artisan coffees, real ales, champagne and delicious cocktails. 

There will be a programme of live cooking demonstrations from top chefs in the District, as well as live jazz music, outdoor theatre, and other entertainment during the festival’s two day run. 

Confirmed participants: 

All Bar One, Ashas, Bar Opus, Chung Ying Central, Costa Coffee, Edmunds Bar, Edwardian Tea Rooms, Hindley’s Bakery, Hotel Du Vin, JoJolapa, Metro Bar and Grill, Old Joint Stock, Opus at Cornwall Street, Pure Bar and Kitchen, Purnell’s, Purnell’s Bisro and Ginger’s Bar, Refreshments by Centenary Lounge, The Bureau, The Old Contemptibles, The Square Peg, The Wellington Real ale, Urban Coffee Company, Nosh and Quaff, Yorks Bakery Cafe. 

For further information visit: 

http://colmorebusinessdistrict.com/

The Colmore Food Festival is always one of my favourite festivals of the year, it’s good fun and with good vegetarian food options on offer, plus a lively atmosphere it is a good family day out. Look out for further updates on Veggie Foodie as I have them plus more details on the vegetarian food options. 

Keep fingers crossed for a weekend of sunshine. 

Thanks for reading. 

Andy😊

Note the first two pictures are courtesy of Clive Reeves PR team who brought the event to my attention. 


#Tastymorsels: changes in the Midlands foodie scene. 


Last week I mentioned that chef Nathan Eades had sadly closed his Bromsgrove restaurant Epi and was in the process of looking at properties in Birmingham to re open in or around the city. Unfortunately that too has now fell through. Though Nathan hasn’t disbanded the business, things are on hold. 

The good news is that Nathan has been appointed Head chef at St Andrews Town Hotel in Droitwich Spa in Worcestershire. Droitwich is 6 miles from Bromsgrove and is a pretty spa town in and around the lovely Worcestershire hills. St Andrews is well known in the area for a been a good wedding venue and has 31 rooms. 

Nathan has told me that he will be cooking food in the same style as Epi, so that’s great news for vegetarians as you know I’m a big fan of his innovative and seasonal dishes. He is due to begin his head chef position in June. 

More to follow.

The big change that was announced in the Birmingham restaurant scene last Week was that chef David Colcombe has left two AA rosette and Veggie Foodie favourite Opus Restaurant, who also form part of the group with Cafe Opus and Bar Opus. This is by ‘mutual agreement’ in order ‘to pursue other interests’. 

I wish David all the best in his future endeavours and thank him for some superb vegetarian food over the years, including the wonderful vegetarian source dinner last year which Ruth and I had such fun at. 

I’m sure it won’t be long before we hear more news on this. 

St Andrews Town Hotel, St Andrews Drive, Droitwich, Worcestershire, WR 9 8BS. 

01905-779 677.

http://www.st-andrewshotel.com/

Win two tickets to the Foodies Festival May 15-17th at Cannon Hill Park Birmingham via Veggie Foodie. 


This competition is now closed. 

A few weeks ago I mentioned in my blog that the Foodies Festival was coming to Birmingham Canon Hill Park from the 15th-17th May. 

The Foodies Festival has a host of exciting things on offer including celebrity chefs, demos, street food, artisan food stalls and much more. 

http://www.foodiesfestival.com/birmingham-cannon-hill-park/

See my post here: 

http://t.co/WI0EZqRWCl

For the above festival in Birmingham I have a pair of tickets to give away to one lucky person to the event, for any day of the 3. 

   

 

All you have to do to win the tickets for the Foodies Festival at Canon Hill Park is: 

. Follow me on Twitter at

https://twitter.com/andydhare

And 

. Retweet any of my tweets about    the competition. 

Or

. via Facebook 

Like the status and comment on Facebook and tell me which part of the Foodies Festival you are most looking forward to. 

Note: if you already follow me on Twitter you only have to re tweet my tweet about the competition. 

Terms and conditions: 

-To enter the competition you must do all of the above either on Twitter or Facebook. 

-The competition will end on Thursday 7th May 2015 at 5pm and no entries received after that date will be accepted. 

-One winner will receive two tickets that can be used on any day of the festival you wish and are valid for one day’s entry. 

-The winners contact details will be passed on by myself to Lanyard Media who will be dispatching the tickets to them. 

And good luck 😊

Thanks for reading

Andy 😊

I have been selected as an official blogger by Lanyard Media for the Foodies Festival in Birmingham. 



#Veggiesundayroast: The Highfield, Edgbaston, Birmingham.


    

The Highfield resides in a striking 1920’s Art Deco property. It’s classic white villa sits poshly in leafy Edgbaston looking inviting, cool and content in its new venture. 

The Highfield is now a gastro pub and restaurant rolled into one. With a lovely garden and two terraces it makes for a space to lounge in and take in those rays. This was the second time I’d visited, the time before pre Christmas for their Christmas menu (see here http://t.co/PM0y53KO5l ) and  I’ve always fancied Sunday Lunch there. It can be the best meal of the week, yes even for veggies. 

On a Sunday they serve a Sunday roast alongside a full alternative menu, dependent on your appetites. It’s good value at £11.50 for the vegetarian variety. The meat options slightly more. 

Sitting opposite Simpsons Restaurant and The Edgbaston bar and boutique hotel, The Highfield White and bright from the outside offers much the same inside. It has an inviting luxurious charm on entering. The bar area is often buzzing, though on a Sunday lunchtime was quieter and yes bar tables were free. 

  
I was visiting with Ruth, my parents and my uncle, on my recommendation, so the pressure was on 😊

We began in the bar with the compulsory (in my world) local  Langley’s No’ 8 Gin. This time with tonic, no junipers or cocktails today. Though recommended.

  
The lovely up front flavour of the gin, classic, perfectly balanced, with a robust flavour and smooth. A lovely gin, made not far away from The Highfield. A good start. 

So into the restaurant. The decor is contemporary, chic in a good way, with comfortable sofas and a light spacious feel about it. It’s a glorious eating space, so much natural light especially on a sunny day. Roll on Summer. 

   
 

I ordered for my starter the healthy sounding and vegan warm superfood salad of salt baked beetroot, lentils, and baby spinach, beetroot and thyme dressing. First of all its a feast for the eyes, bright and colourful. It was lovely, more filling than I initially thought, with contrasting beetroot favours and warning lentils against a crisp lettuce. It felt wholesome, interesting and easy on the eye. 

Ruth and my parents chose the vegetarian soup of the day. Warming tomato flavours with good croutons. It went down well. 

  
The veggie Sunday roast option was a Veggie nut roast Wellington, with roast potatoes, seasonal vegetables, celeriac and parsnip purée, Yorkshire pudding and veggie gravy. 

   

   
We also ordered a side of Cauliflower cheese

   

 

The nut roast Wellington was excellent. It had a good combination of mixed nuts, was moist and not over cooked in any way. It was a large portion and with the vegetables and yorkshire proved to be a filling roast. I liked the flavours, it felt home made and it showed an understanding of how a veggie roast can work when done well. 

We all felt that it would have been better had the vegetables been not so green (mangetout, and Broccoli) and had a contrasting colour in the bowl, maybe carrots or squash. But they were cooked well all the same. 

The Cauliflower cheese was lovely, a good cheesy flavour and cooked well. It Made for a contrasting colour on the plate. 

The roasties were very good, a proper job as were the Yorkshire puddings. 

   
 

For desert I did order the sticky toffee pudding, but it was probably the worst I ever had. Dry, overlooked, zero sauce. Inediable. The Highfield did kindly deduct the price from the bill after I explained. 

The Highfield’s veggie roast was very enjoyable.

The service was good throughout, friendly and mostly attentive, it didn’t feel rushed. The dining room is a lovely light space for daytime eating, with a garden view. This is certainly a plus when deciding upon a Sunday roast venue. For vegetarians it’s a good place to eat. The veggie roast is well made, filling and delicious. 

The Highfirld is an elegant and restrained dining venue but without any pretension. 

The Sunday roast is good value and with the quality seasonal ingredients used is ‘full of the good stuff’. 

Food is served all day from 8am-11pm. 

  
We paid for own meal. All opinions are my own and honest as always. 

Thanks for reading. 

Andy 😊

The Highfield, 22 Highfield Road, Edgbaston, Birmingham, B15 3DP. 

0121-227-7068.

http://www.highfieldedgbaston.co.uk/
The sample menu: 

http://www.highfieldedgbaston.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/SAMPLE-SUNDAY-BEST.pdf
  
   
   

  Photo courtesy of The Highfield. 

Blogiversary: Happy Birthday Veggie Foodie. One year old today 🍰🍷🍸🎂🎉


This time last year I launched my Vegetarian food blog Vegiefoodie.com. I can’t quite believe how quickly the time has gone, and to be honest that I’m still writing and loving blogging so much. 

When I began my aim was to celebrate vegetarian dining and eating out and make vegetarians aware of the great places (and not so great) to eat in Birmingham and beyond. I’ve been fortunate that I’ve had some brilliant meals and drinks over the last year. 

Notably Purnells, Epi, Opus Restaurant, Lasan, Bilash in Wolverhamptin, Nomad, Bisro 1847, Raja Monkey and Vanilla Black in London, and Northcote near Blackburn and Turners-look out for reviews soon. 

The rise of street food in Birmingham has given vegetarians increased options as to where to eat, and with the added bonus of not been forced to sit down. It’s also a bit of a crawl so you can mix and match dishes and types of food, and drink. 

Restaurants in Birmingham have got better at understanding that vegetarians don’t always want to eat veggie burgers, pasta or risotto, though when they are cooked well using good seasonal ingredients they can be superb. I’ve had some of the best pasta dishes in Italy, that are tomato based, and just because of the simple ingredient, the tomato. The rise in the independent bar. Cafe and restaurant in the city is also good news for veggies and my blog has alway favoured the independent business and its creative originality. 

   
     
Before I began my blog I ate at some wonderful restaurants with Ruth that I didn’t blog about and hope to return to one day. 

Please excuse me for making a short list, but some of the best vegetarian dishes I’ve had have come at 

Arzak in San Sebastián, 3 Michelin starred in Spain, exquisite dishes. Notable deserts. 

 L’Enclume- Simon Rogan’s restaurant in Cartmel Lake District, probably the best meal I’ve ever had. 

Le Manoir, Raymond Blanc’s restaurant/hotel in Oxfordshire, a superb veggie menu. A great place to stay. 

Alyn Williams at The Westbury in London, 

Castle Terrace andNumber one in Edinburgh, 

Benares in London, the finest indian food I’ve eaten. 

The Ritz in London, it’s the Ritz…and was beautiful with excellently creative veggie dishes. 

To name a few.. And just a month or so before I launched my blog The Cross in Kenilworth, which now has a Michelin star, but hadn’t then, and served such a beautiful vegetarian menu. 

So lastly, just to thank everyone who has followed my blog, and has been so supportive on social media. I’m not mentioning names, but I hope people know who they are. 

Plus a big thank you to all my fellow food bloggers in Birmingham and beyond who have been kind and supportive and welcomed me into their community and world. It’s been a pleasure meeting some of you. 

Here’s to the next year and more great vegetarian food. Keep your eyes peeled for some changes in how Veggie Foodie looks, and hopefully some more exciting foodie discoveries on the horizon. 

Happy Blogiversary. 

Thanks for reading 😊 and been part of my veggie foodie journey I couldn’t have done it without you all. 

Andy 

You can follow me on Twitter @andydhare

Facebook at Andy Hare and Veggie Foodie 

Instagram-andydhare