Throughout April and May, veggies, vegans and carnivores alike voted for their favourite meat-free eatery out of a list of 32 finalists. Once all your votes were counted, the top ten restaurants were judged by an expert panel including celebrity chef and author of ‘Eat Your Veg’, Arthur Potts Dawson, Editor of The Vegetarian Magazine, Jane Hughes, George Clark of the Sustainable Restaurant Association, and our very own Editor, Ben Reynolds. With a strong list of semi-finalists, judges based their final decision on a restaurant’s commitment to vegetarianism as well as sustainability, taking into account issues such as the provenance of ingredients, engagement with the local community and the sustainability of water and waste practices.
We’re delighted to announce that, with an impressive list of ethical credentials as well as reader votes, the winner is The Riverside Vegetaria restaurant in Kingston-Upon-Thames.
The Riverside Vegetaria has been serving delicious vegetarian and vegan fare since 1989 and, as Managing Director Ritchie Sakthivel insists, the restaurant has always followed an “eat local, buy local and be local” policy. Wherever possible, food is organic and Fairtrade; they even buy some spices, fruit and vegetables from long-term customers with local farming plots. The judges were particularly impressed with the restaurant’s commitment to its community. For example, it offers discounts for local hospital workers, it is sponsoring the building of a library, and staff even work with a local school. With its enviable position along the river and a varied menu offering dishes like masala dosai, Caribbean casserole, organic nut roast and organic baked figs with orange and brandy, it’s no wonder The Riverside Vegetaria has emerged victorious. Congratulations to everyone at the restaurant!
Popular with both veggies and meat-lovers, Mildreds’ menu is inspired by international cuisine and surprisingly, for a central London restaurant, its elegant dishes remain affordable. Truffle and artichoke ravioli anyone? Judges noted its dedication to organic produce and recycling, as well as its use of local suppliers where possible.
In an alternate universe, all stodgy pizza chains would be replaced by ethical pizza restaurants on the high street. Karma-Free Pizza uses high quality ingredients, with dough made daily onsite using organic flour, mozzarella made using milk from a slaughter-free farm, and vegan cheese offered at no extra cost.
Becoming vegetarian or even just eating less meat is a simple way to make your diet healthier, cheaper and more sustainable. It couldn’t be easier in London, and we really are spoiled for choice with plenty of restaurants, cafes and street-food stalls serving delicious meat-free dishes. Join us on Twitter @jelliedeelmag and let us know your favourite. Huge thanks to everyone who voted.
Grub Club (41)
Applaud for Claude’s (39)
Child's plates (38)
An offaly good idea (35)
Market kitchen (33)
Street Kitchen (31)
Pop up Principles? (31)
Star of Indian (29)