Vegan Liverpool: Your Guide to dining in the city
Adopting a vegan or vegetarian diet has never been so popular and with more and more eateries popping up around Liverpool city centre, our Alex has the low down on what’s good.
With such a wealth of restaurants to choose from when dining out it can be hard to know which venue to choose for the occasion. From a quick veggie bite for one to a quality vegan banquet for 12, we’ve lined up the cream of the crop with our Vegan Liverpool run down……now, who’s hungry?
Breakfast at 81 Renshaw Street
81 Renshaw has been on the radar for a long time. However, 2017 has seen the humble café undergo new ownership, rejuvenating the backroom venue and the basement vinyl shop. Through the change of ownership one thing that has remained the same is the quality, and charm, of the café, and its food. We struggled to pick just one dish here, however, the Vegan Full English had to get a mention for a couple of reasons. Firstly, this is the closest, we think, you’ll come to a classic Full English for the plant-based dieters. Secondly, the vegan black pudding. Yep, vegan black pudding. It’s more like pink pudding, but once you’ve tasted this stuff, you may never go back!
Brunch at Love Thy Neighbour, Bold Street
Love Thy Neighbour is the latest business to take on the two-storey space opposite Liverpool staple, Bold Street Coffee, a building that has seen tenants come and go over the past few years. Now we have something that looks set to stay in this incredibly beautiful eatery. Brunch is served 8 until 5 and is the pride of the hipster bistro, so much so that #avocadoisbae can be see written around the cafe. You can order up an array of very ‘instagramable’ dishes, juices and smoothies, with a mixture of meat, vegetarian and vegan options, meaning that this is one for the entire family. We highly recommend the oat milk smoothies and, of course, the avocado.
A Light Lunch at Green Days Café, Lark Lane
Just off Lark Lane, tucked away above a whole street of restaurants, bars and cafes, is Green Days; a quaint, quirky independent eatery reminiscent of the city centre staple that is Egg. This hippy hole of a café does an incredible selection of home cooked treats that change seasonally, warming in the winter and satisfying in the summer. The staff are down to earth, friendly and enthusiastic about the veggie variety of diets, especially as it is obvious that they have been compiling the menus and meals by hand themselves. We highly recommend popping in for a sandwich on your lunch break, and topping it off with one of their homemade cakes because…why not?
After Work/Pre-Evening Bite at Vincent Kitchepn, Bold Street
Vincent Kitchen is one of Bold Streets newest residence, only opening its door this spring. The signs on the window read ‘bowl food’, ‘gluten-free’, ‘diary free’, but not specifically vegetarian and vegan. However, we feel that this is to its credit. It’s tough to find somewhere that accommodates everyone, with all dietary requirements getting the same quality of food. This place does this extremely well. The food is as practical as it is tasty and interesting. We thought that this is a brilliant option for grabbing a lunch that will fill you up, satisfy your taste buds and still be healthy, however, the fact that they are starting up a new promotion called ‘Date Night or Mate Night’ convinced us that this restaurant is the perfect stop off after work, or pre-theatre.
The deal includes 2 bowls, 2 desserts and a bottle of wine for £25 per couple…you can’t complain with that. The food is a mixture of oriental and Hawaiian recipes, meaning that you can get some homely Buddha bowls as well as fresh, light pineapple salads. Based on how focussed Vincent is at getting things right, such as the fact that they changed the name THE DAY BEFORE OPENING, and how popular they are of an evening, expansion is on the horizon.
Best Evening Meal – Mowgli, Bold St & Castle St
With a second site open just off Castle Street, this Bold Street modern classic remains high on the list of must visit veggie restaurants. Although not an entirely vegan chain, the vegan and gluten free menus on offer are not to be snubbed. The décor is relaxed, yet somewhat chic, meaning that you could just go for lunch, however, we recommend dining out for you evening meal for this one. The Tiffin Boxes mean that you receive whatever the chef fancies cooking for you, a concept that works brilliantly with the Indian street food vibe, especially as you know that it will all be vegan. You get two curries, a side and some carbs (rice, potato, that sort of thing). We’ve been an awful lot and have never been disappointed with what the chef puts on our plate.
Home Cooked Goodness – Egg Café, Newington
This is somewhere that has firmly rooted itself in to the Vegan Liverpool scene, being a choice for many that do not partake in the vegan lifestyle. Not only do they offer a wide array of mains and desserts for vegans, but they also do the same for vegetarians and people whom avoid gluten and diary. It is a very homely place with interesting artwork on the walls, all available to purchase should you feel the urge.
Sometimes one might feel the cold creeping in through the authentic, rustic windows, however this is soon forgotten as the nut roast arrives, warming every part of your body, and, to top it all off, vegan custard. You’d be amazed how many places offer desserts with no cream, ice cream or custard to go on the side! Dry, sir…very dry. The homely feel is added to with the cakes and deli showing you what is on offer and the plants dotted around the building, marrying up to the environmental ethos that egg hold so closely to them.
One For All The Family – Brasco/Milo Lounge, Mann Island, Lark Lane
Picture the scene: your family and you are walking the dog around Sefton Park, or along the docks, and bellies start rumbling. Your dad wants a burger, your mum wants a salad, you want something vegan and the kids are, as most kids can be, fussy eaters. Finding one for the whole clan can be a nightmare at the best of times, let alone when hunger strikes out of the blue. Fear not, head in to one of the Loungers eateries and you will find something for everyone, even the dog, as free treats are available on the bar.
There are separate menus for vegan, gluten-free folk and ‘normals’, meaning that there is no fuss or faff. The food is a step up from your normal pub grub, but isn’t quite at gastro-pub level, something not to be taken for granted on a Sunday afternoon out. Find rest-bite in snug setting of these lovely lounges.
Best Selection – Sanskruti, Ormond Street
Sanskruti is a family owned, basement venue in the business district of town, an area that often gets overlooked when it comes to dining out, especially if you’re looking for something of the veggie variety. However, what the district lacks in choice is more than made up for on the menu of this Indian restaurant. From dosa to daal, kofta to kaju karela, the choice is seemingly endless.
Sanskruti prides itself on bringing the finest tastes of India to the North West of England, but we think that they should be proud of so much more, especially since they have that part firmly nailed. The setting was pleasantly cultural, the place was rammed for Tuesday night, the service was great and the tastes almost outweighed the amount of choice on offer. There is a selection of “fake meats” to keep the meat eaters happy, as well as vegan desserts that are often hard to come by. We love this place, and we think that you will too.
Best Atmosphere – White Wolf Kitchen, Cook Street
We know that saying that an eatery has the best atmosphere may sound like we are damning it with faint praise, but that is definitely the case. The food at this kitchen come yoga studio is fantastic, with the Big Boston Breakfast being a standout. That said, the aura that comes over you when you enter this beautiful building is what makes it stand out from the rest. The setting is sumptuous and yoga instructor, Louise, along with her best friend Becky, does an amazing job of making you feel like you’ve known them your entire life.
They call everyone who is member of the yoga studio by their first name, which we feel shouldn’t go unnoticed in this day and age. The team are happy to chat, but also happy to let you sit in the Scandinavian, snug surrounding with an almond latte whilst getting lost in a book. Whether you partake in the yoga or not, the state of mind needed for the activity is transmitted around the venue.
Best All Rounder – Our Kitchen, Bold Street
Ladies and Gentlemen: our Vegan Liverpool headline act. Another new arrival to Bold Street, Our Kitchen almost knocked us off our seats. After chatting to owner, Tara, we learned that the ethos is all about balance. Once you know this, you look at Our Kitchen in a new light, as everything about it has a sense of balance. One could come in for a healthy breakfast for a homemade juice with a Super Green Omelette, or they could come to pig out on sharer plate sized nachos with a bottle of wine.
The only thing that is non-negotiable is that everything is at least vegetarian and organic…something that I’m guessing you’ll be OK with! The décor is classy and almost a tasteful as the food, however, when you get a basic Caesar Salad with kale that makes you say, “Wow, try this kale!” we think that the grub might just take first place for taste. Whether taking visitors out for a meal, going on a date, grabbing a quick bite and everything in between, Our Kitchen is perfect for all.
Dining out as vegetarian or vegan has never been better! Whether you’re a local looking to try somewhere new or just visiting the city and grabbing a healthy bite, Liverpool is the place to be for vegans and veggies alike.