The shops and the lights look so pretty
Kensington High Street in West London is a shopper’s paradise. Huge department stores coexist alongside snappy boutiques and regular town street stores. If you have money to spend, Kensington High Sreet and its inhabitants will gladly assist you in removing a lot from your wallet.
But it isn’t just clothing and accessories on offer to tempt eager consumers along this famous shopping strip. Vegan foodies will be delighted to learn of a sophisticated eatery serving up 100% plant-based fare. It is called Saf.
Saf is located on the top level of Whole Foods Market, Kensington. The food options available on this level are set out rather like a food court. You can walk to the front of the floor for Japanese delicacies, freshly squeezed juices are produced at a central counter and pizzas are cooked before your very eyes in a huge oven. The Whole Foods food court has something for everyone. With Saf taking up a large portion of the floor, vegans also get a look in.
I’m going to get straight down to business. Even though the food is a touch on the pricey side, it is delicious enough to warrant multiple visits. Everything was freshly made and lovingly presented. It is a high class affair to savour. Let’s get stuck in.
My main of raw lasagne was dreamy. The combination of courgettes, mushrooms and black olives was a taste sensation. The food was so delicately assembled, I was almost too frightened to touch it. Of course my fear subsided awfully quickly and I devoured the lasagne along with its accompanying side salad and flaxseed cracker. The cashew cheese was a nice touch on top. The cost of this dish was just over £13 and I recommend it highly.
One of my dining associates made the choice to consume the mushroom farinata. They described the chickpea crepe as ‘fabulous, tasty and satisfying’. That seems like a ringing endorsement to me.
Josh took a gamble on the dill and pea risotto. He assures me it was a solid investment. The peas and dill were combined with cashew cream and pearl barley. It carried a price tag of £14.45.
The desserts all sounded too good to be true, so as a group we decided on the old ‘order everything and split them’ routine.
The torte was phenomenal. The richness and flavour were top notch. I savoured every morsel, including the fresh fruit, cashew cream and date sauce supplied as accompaniments. The choc orange cake and strawberry cheesecake were equally adored by my group.
It will certainly cost you a lot more money than getting a bag of chips, but Saf is a fine dining experience that you will cherish. It is completely vegan, gourmet eating at its finest. For the thrifty diner, discount vouchers are sometimes on display near the entrance of Whole Foods Market… keep an eye out for them near the customer service desk and present them to your server as you order.My goal now is to try the original Saf location in Shoreditch and when I am feeling more adventurous, their restaurant in Turkey. Now that would make a superb blog entry!
Saf Kensington (upstairs in Whole Foods Market)
Hours: Monday through Saturday 11am – 10pm
Sunday 11am – 5pm
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**Note for food bloggers – the lighting in Saf is great for ambiance but bad for photos**