Make mine a mezze

Some things slip past me. I’m not infallible when it comes to knowing about all the vegan food in London. I try my best to eat everything on offer, but I am just one FGV.

Overlooking a vegan option would be excusable if we are talking about a tiny cafe tucked away in the backstreets of an outer suburb, but not when it comes to a chain of cafes with approximately 200 locations worldwide… with two locations within ten minutes of my front door!

The two Le Pain Quotidien outlets near my house somehow managed to escape my attention for a while, but I will definitely be popping in to try their vegan options often after my experience last week. I was casually strolling past the Notting Hill location of this global chain when a little carrot image at the bottom of their menu caught my eye.

Instead of the expected ‘suitable for vegetarians’, I was faced with ’100% botanical/vegan’. I quickly hurried inside.

I’m not going to be hysterical and say these people are the saviours of high street vegan dining, but the few offerings were very well thought out. My trio of hummus mezze was fresh, tasty and difficult to finish due to size. The beetroot, green pea and chickpea varieties of hummus were nicely accompanied by fresh vegetables and bread.

Notting Hill location

Notting Hill location

They dangled a carrot in front of me

They dangled a carrot in front of me

Trio of hummus mezze

Trio of hummus mezze

The cafe proudly state on their menu they always have a selection of vegan muffins and the rotating monthly specials always seem to include a ‘botanical’ option.

You will need to dig a little deeper into your purse than some eateries require, but healthy and thoughtful eating for vegans has certainly got a good friend in Le Pain Quotidien.

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10 Responses to Make mine a mezze

  1. They always have a vegan blueberry muffin (with the little carrot symbol on the sign) and it’s really nice..I’ve also had some kind of quinoa/bulgar wheat type salad there that was also good. That trio of dips looks great too!

  2. lindsaybelle says:

    I find it frustrating the lack of vegan options at high street restaurants – surely it can’t be that hard to come up with something tasty and plant-based? Especially here in Leicester – people look at me like I’m crazy when I ask about a vegan dish!

    • fatgayvegan says:

      The vegan customer has to do all the work at some places and tell the staff how to put something together.

      • lindsaybelle says:

        I did that recently by ordering from the side dishes… “um, can you just put some of the Mediterranean veggies on a plate with new potatoes and a side salad? all on the same plate. no butter.” I hate being awkward, but hey-ho.

  3. Hungry City Hippy says:

    Thanks for sharing I had no idea :)

  4. The “selection of vegan muffins” doesn’t exist. There is one and only vegan muffin: the blueberry one. It’s great anyway, but it’s important to point out that there is one, not a range, then nobody gets frustrated.
    Their coffee (with soya milk) and their selection of breads are very good.

    • fatgayvegan says:

      The menu states ‘options’ with an s. Maybe they should up their vegan offerings!

      • Yes, exactly. I was not correcting you, just to make it clear ;)
        I was just pointing out that, while their menu says “options”, they actually offer just one.
        They definitely should offer more, and open new shops in other UK locations. I really like Le Pain Quotidien.

  5. Gabi says:

    I think as far as high street offerings go, Pain QUotidien is waaay up there! It has a vegan brunch, there’s the vegan tartine, a vegan main course, one of the soups is usually vegan, most of the sides are plant based, you can have a vegan breakfast with the dark chocolate spread and other yummy things and the PEAR AND CHOCOLATE CAKE is vegan too….I love it. And if we do want more vegan options then I’m afraid it also means that every so often we will have to put our hands in our pockets and make it worth their while….

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