Veganuary or not, January has us all thinking about our health. London’s restaurants are getting in on the act too, with menus that put gut health, sustainable ingredients and non-alcoholic drinks front and centre. And forget all that bland and bleary ‘clean eating’ spiel – these restaurants are serving up exciting dishes that put a fresh new spin on getting your greens. Healthier eating never tasted so good.
Dry January doesn’t have to be all doom, gloom and tap water. Michelin-starred restaurant Angler has partnered with Seedlip to launch an innovative non-alcoholic pairing menu, available until 15 February. Angler’s Executive Chef Gary Foulkes has conjured up a three-course menu of sustainable British seafood, with a non-alcoholic cocktail matched to each course. For instance, the main of Cornish red gurnard, potimarron (red kuri squash), spiced pumpkin and buttermilk will be paired with a refreshing long drink made from homemade pumpkin juice and infused with ginger vinegar, Seedlip Spice 94, and shaken with egg white. Haute cuisine without the hangover.
Until 15 February, South Place Hotel, 3 South Place, London EC2M 2AF, anglerrestaurant.com
Spiritland at Royal Festival Hall
Spiritland at the Royal Festival Hall is the second incarnation of the restaurant-cum-music venue-cum-recording studio, of which the first opened in Kings Cross in 2016. Here, a bonkers sound system rules the airwaves, with guest DJs taking it in turns to contribute to the soundscape of house, country and new beat music. Looking after the 180-covers from a food perspective is New Zealand head chef Moondog, previously of The Providores, who has created a sharing menu full of enticing international flavours and healthy twists on old favourites, like the sweet and sour pork belly with octopus and coconut. To complete the scene is a menu of British beers, fresh cocktails and a well-edited wine menu. Healthy for the soul, as well as the stomach.
Belvedere Rd, Lambeth, London SE1, spiritland.com
M Victoria Street
This January, M Victoria is giving the whole concept of ‘clean eating’ a new, fresher meaning. They’ve installed Radic8 air sterilisation technology in the restaurant, to ensure diners are breathing only the cleanest O2 during their visit. This is combined with a revamped menu in the restaurant’s RAW bar, which takes inspiration from Korean cuisine to focus on gluten-free, gut-friendly dishes – despite the name it’s not all raw. Chef Mike Reid’s new menu starts with crispy kimchi pancakes, followed by Yook Hwei – a Korean steak tartare, egg yolk, soy and Korean pear. Next up is Korean dumplings with fermented chilli and barbecued beef bulgogi, before ending with white chocolate ice cream with black sesame, yuzu and matcha. Sound delicious? The drinks menu has also be souped up in the health stakes, with flavoured kombuchas from Wild Fizz used to concoct fermented cocktails, making them great for your gut health.
Zig Zag Building, 74 Victoria St, London SW1E 6SQ, mrestaurants.co.uk