Top 5 Vegetarian Restaurants In London

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For a long time the vegetarian-dining scene in London was lacking a little zip. A frustrating number of the capital’s top restaurants either ignored vegetarians or else treated them with indifference – perhaps offering them a plate of pasta arrabiatta. The result? While carnivores cooed over their expertly prepared and beautifully presented entrees, their veggie counterparts were forced to get stuck into the bread bowl so as to stave off hunger pangs.

Fast forward to 2014 and fortunately – for the capital’s veggie contingent – it’s all change. London has followed in the footsteps of other cosmopolitan cities of cool such as Sydney, New York and LA and exploded with designated, upscale veggie eateries and raw food restaurants. All of whom serve up some of the most delicious dishes (sans meat) imaginable, helping to dispel the stereotype that veggie dining is Spartan and dull.

Here are five fabulous vegetarian restaurants in the capital that even the staunchest of carnivores will approve of…

1 The Gate

Hands up if you love The Gate? That’s all of us then. It’s Hammersmith locale? Not so much. Happily Adrian and Michael Daniel have opened a second branch in Islington meaning there’s no need to schlepp to W6 for fabulous vegetarian fare. 
Order a basket of bread or some olives while you peruse the extensive menu. You’ll find Feta and cous cous fritters, Teriyaki aubergine and a divine Thali on the summer a la carte menu but the brunch menu - think French toast and Tortillas - is tempting too. Bottom line? Vegetarian dining never sounded so appealing.
370 St John Street, EC1

2 Manna

Manna has been serving Primrose Hill’s green gourmands for nearly 50 years so clearly Manna must be doing something right. Starters include Jalapeño cashew cheese croquettes, vegetable tempura and an almond and leek tart. Elsewhere Organic bangers and mash and Stuffed polenta and wild mushroom ragu will keep you warm - even if the weather won’t. Wash your meal down with a glass of organic or vegan, natch, wine. And don’t miss dessert: old school stapes such as Sticky toffee pudding served with vanilla ice cream and caramel share menu space with more innovate offerings like the raw mojito tart. You can always work off the extra calories in the nearby Triyoga studio - a favourite of Sadie Frost, Kate Moss and co.
4 Erskine Road, NW3

3 tibits

Located in the heart of fashionable Heddon Street opposite the glamourous Momo, this Swiss vegetarian restaurant - which recently celebrated six years in London - serves as a refuge from the madness of Regent Street.
Choose from over 40 homemade vegetarian and vegan salads, soups and hot dishes from all over the world. Standouts from Head Chef Brian Mesmain’s summer menu include Wakame Rice Noodle Salad and a Red Thai Vegetable Curry with shiitake mushrooms, green beans, courgettes, bell peppers and bean sprouts. Desserts don’t disappoint either: the Cherry chocolate truffle is definitely woth ditching the bikini diet for. The colourful interior design by the Designers Guild - one of the foremost luxury home furnishings brands in the world - is further treat. Little wonder then that the likes of Rosario Dawson, Damian Lewis and Sir Ian McKellen all love hanging out here.
12-14 Heddon Street, Off Regent Street, W1B

4 Vanilla Black

Ever since this classy establishment opened six years ago, it has been heaving with well heeled health conscious types – and for good reason. The Michelin recommended restaurant wows with its creative cuisine: think Fried mushroom mousse and rosemary sauce, Salted and ash baked celeriac and foraged sea asters or Espresso macaron and whipped blue cheese for dessert. Prices match the glamour but service is impeccable and the surroundings suitably handsome. Essentially Vanilla Black is a serious destination restaurant that should be on the hot list of veggies and non veggies alike.
17-18 Tooks Court, Off Cursitor Street, EC4

5 The Wallace at The Wallace Collection

All eyes may be on Chiltern Firehouse but André Balazs' new venture isn't the only reason to make for Marylebone. Veggies will want to check out the Wallace restaurant. Flooded with natural light and dotted with trees and sculptures, the Oliver Peyton's restaurant is a real delight. The menu revolves around modern French cuisine but vegetarians aren’t neglected either. Indeed the vegetarian set menu was voted the best in London by the Evening Standard who hailed it "a great restaurant to take the special herbivore in your life to". Drinks include beer and wine, but in such stunning surroundings it seems a shame not to try the champagne cocktails.
The Wallace Collection, Hertford House, Manchester Square, W1U
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