I have been working non-stop lately with my website re-launch as well as other various projects, doing 12-hour days. Do you think I’ve got time to be chasing Pokemon? So, a day trip to Bath for a spa day and to check out some of Bath’s vegan restaurants sounded like the best idea since cauliflower buffalo wings.
The day was spent at the Thermae Baths after which we headed to Acorn Vegetarian Restaurant for dinner.
Acorn was highly spoken about as one of the best in Bath, having won the ‘Best Vegetarian and Vegan’ award. Acorn is located in a quaint, cobbled street in the town centre, and we were greeted with big smiles and happy-to-be-there vibes from the waiters. I couldn’t help but notice all the beautiful copper details in this light, modern and cosy restaurant! The décor is simple, with hints of sophisticated greys and muted blues against mainly white walls. All these features add to the uncluttered, modern look and feel of the restaurant. I particularly loved the air-sealed jars, which replaced the flowers that you usually get on tables. These were filled with live moss to replicate a wild forest with tiny plastic animals to add to the composition. ‘Awww’ worthy.
This place had such a great vibe, although we were the only ones there at this point. After perusing the menu, I could see that they had stayed well clear of the falafel sandwiches and the head chef, Richard, who happens to be the owner too, was very adventurous with the menu and maximised the whole kingdom of the veggie world.
I love places that feed you even before your starter comes. In this case, we had the delicious Dukkah which was served with some yummy sourdough bread and thyme oil. Dukkah for those of you who don’t know (I didn’t) is an Egyptian mix of spices and nuts, you get the bread, dunk it in the oil and then in the mix: major noms. Then came the amuse-bouche from the chef, to give us a glimpse into what is about to come. So much flavour and different textures, all in a tiny bite-size portion of scrumptiousness, which had a deep-fried beetroot crisp on a bed of lentils, complemented by the crunchy toasted hazelnut and fresh mint leaves! A gorgeous pop of flavour!
For starters, I opted for ‘Some Things To Do With Cucumbers’ which consisted of charred cucumber slices with cucumber and dill sorbet, pickled cucumber and pistachio and olive oil, all on one plate of a cool-as-a-cucumber emulsion. It was quite refreshing and still had depth of flavour, despite UK cucumbers being quite tasteless, in my opinion.
My Partner-in-Crime went for the carrot & cashew pate. It was beautifully presented, and he said it was an explosion of flavours! I would agree; everything went really well together, the soft delicate cashew paté complemented the spelt crackers, and the pickles added a little kick to the dish to tie it all in.
The main dishes consisted of elaborate creations from humble veggies, such as Wye Valley asparagus with samphire and chervil, served alongside hazelnut gnocchi on a bed of leeks, finished with burnt sabayon. It makes me so excited to see dishes like these, as I believe veggie cuisine is about reinventing the stereotypes of bland, boring and unfulfilling food.
I went for the smoked field mushroom in a rich mushroom demi-glace, with mushroom and walnut paté, potatoes, salt-baked celeriac purée and market greens. I like mushrooms okay? Head chef Richard seems to like putting the same ingredient into one dish in many different ways, like this mushroom with mushroom with a side mushroom. It was very dense in flavour and texture. The meatiness of the field mushroom, together with the soft and creamy walnut paté balanced out with the potato and celeriac, which toned down all the ‘mushroominess’. I must say, I would have liked to have more of the ‘side’ – which was a block of baked celeriac to balance out all those mushrooms, as although it was delicious I couldn’t eat the mushroom paté smothered on top of a mushroom!
At this point, even the carnivore opposite me was pretty stuffed. We decided to share a light dessert. Sophie, our lovely waiter, recommended that we go for the preserved strawberries with a Prosecco sorbet on a bed of crushed hazelnuts; it all sounded marvellous. It was just the perfect dessert to cleanse our palates and get that little bit of sweetness to finish an amazing meal. The strawberries were tender and had the perfect level of sweetness, with the cold and refreshing Prosecco sorbet and hints of fresh basil and pepper, enhancing the freshness of the dish and not making it all monotone. It’s incredible how simple ingredients make such delicious dishes.
So, if you are in Bath, I would highly recommend you check out Acorn Vegetarian Kitchen. Then walk it off by seeing the beautiful city of Bath, as it has such stunning modern and old architecture.
Thank you to Sophie for taking such great care of us: You were amazing, and of course to Hayley and Richard for hosting us. We had a delicious time, as I said, the best vegan food since Miami. Open up a restaurant in London, pretty please!
You can check out their awards on their website. To visit head to 2 North Parade Passage (just off Abbey Green), Bath BA1 1NX, only a short walk from Bath Abbey and Roman Baths.