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6th January 2023
This Veganuary, new research has revealed the UK’s top gourmet-casual tasting menus for vegans.
High-res vegan tasting menu images HERE
High-res hotel images HERE
Veganism and plant-based diets are increasingly on the rise around the world, with Google searches for “vegan food near me” seeing a 5,000% increase in 2021 and almost 630,000 people taking part in 2022’s Veganuary campaign. As a result, many restaurants are adapting their menus to accommodate for the shift in eating habits.
It is becoming increasingly easy to find vegan food in supermarkets and restaurants because the UK has come on in leaps and bounds in response to the rise of vegan and plant-based dining. But what about the very best gourmet vegan food that the country has to offer? And what about when it isn’t Veganuary? Here, The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences has taken a look at the hotels and restaurants around the UK that currently offer gourmet-casual vegan tasting menus.
2022 saw the cost-of-living soar across the UK. According to a recent Morning Consult study, 82% of Brits agree this has impacted their habits when it comes to dining out. Therefore, a number of different metrics were analysed to create a score and reveal the best gourmet casual tasting menus for vegan diners including average price per course and distance to nearest train or tube station. Although many restaurants are getting creative to keep interest high and costs down, this study has concentrated on restaurants that offer tasting menus costing under £12 per course.
Top 10 Best Vegan Gourmet Casual Tasting Menus in the UK
|Rank||Hotel / Restaurant||Location||Number of courses||Average price per course (£)||Distance to nearest train or tube station (miles)||Wine pairing price (£)||Average customer rating /5||Overall score|
|1||Six by Nico||Manchester||6||£6.17||0.5||£30||4.55||12|
|3||The Chequers Inn||Aylesbury||7||£8.71||1.7||£39||4.53||18|
|4||The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences||London||5||£10||0.2||£45||4.35||19|
* For this analysis, a lower score is the better outcome
Popular Manchester based restaurant, Six by Nico, came out joint first as the UK’s best gourmet casual tasting menu for vegans, with a score of only 12. This is likely to be largely due to the restaurant having a very reasonable average price of £6.17 per course, as well as an affordable £30 wine pairing. Six by Nico only launched its entirely vegan tasting menu in September for the first time, and so the menu must be impressive to have achieved such a score in such a short space of time!
Despite currently only operating as a pop-up eatery, Tendril Kitchen in London also topped the list, with a score of 13. The restaurant has one of the lowest average prices per course at £5.57 and is a mere 476 feet away from the nearest tube station, Oxford Circus. It also ties with Six by Nico for having the second highest customer rating at 4.55 out of 5.
The Oak Restaurant in Bath comes third in the ranking, with an overall score of 14. The restaurant has the cheapest wine pairing on the list at £26 and is only a 5-minute walk from the nearest train station, Bath Spa.
Plant-based restaurant Land in Birmingham also ranks third with a score of 14. The restaurant has the highest average customer rating in the ranking at an impressive 4.83 out of 5, and is just 0.1 miles away from Birmingham Snow Hill train station.
The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences ranks fourth in the top 10 list, with a score of 19. Their vegan menu is comprised of five courses at £10 each, including a vegan “brie”. The hotel is also a stone’s throw from Hyde Park Corner tube station. The Athenaeum’s Head Chef, Ian Howard, offers three tasting menus at 116 at The Athenaeum – one of which is vegetarian and one of which is vegan. The chef, who was previously Head Chef at one of London’s most celebrated meat-centric restaurants, Roast in the heart of Borough Market, has also devised a vegan festive tasting menu after seeing a growing demographic of ‘plant-curious’ diners in London.
The Athenaeum’s executive chef, Ian Howard, comments on the hotel’s vegan friendly menus: “In the last year we’ve noticed more and more diners, who wouldn’t traditionally call themselves vegetarian or vegan, looking for options where they can dine on healthier alternatives and add more fruit and vegetables to their diets. People are cutting back on red meat and dairy and opting for healthier, locally sourced, seasonal produce, such as the beautiful celeriac that we serve as a carpaccio with apple, hazelnut and truffles foraged for us in the UK. We’ve also found a fabulous new plant-based producer who supplies us with a vegan ‘Brie’ so that diners don’t feel like they’re missing out on the cheese-course when they’re having dinner with a group of friends.”
As well as a completely vegan tasting menu, The Athenaeum also offers a vegan afternoon tea; the UK sees 3,600 Google searches for “vegan afternoon tea” every month, showing that it’s a popular activity for plant-based diners.
To carry out this research, The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences compiled a list of restaurants and hotels in the UK offering fully vegan tasting menus with course prices lower than £12. For each restaurant, the research then looked at average price per course, distance to the nearest train or tube station in miles, the price for wine pairings where offered and average customer rating. Average customer rating was calculated by taking an average rating out of 5 from Google reviews and TripAdvisor’s overall rating as well as ratings for service and value for money. Each metric was then awarded a score for where it ranked for that metric (e.g., the lowest average price per course would be awarded 1). These scores were then tallied up to create an overall score, where the lower the score, the higher the ranking. Full data is available on request.
An independent five-star hotel in the heart of prestigious Mayfair, The Athenaeum Hotel & Residences exudes spirited luxury with a nod to Art Deco roots. With the West End, designer-lined Bond Street and Buckingham Palace all just a stroll away, this is an enviable London location to call ‘home’ for a while. Rooms and suites come with all of life’s luxuries and views over Green Park or the character-filled streets of Mayfair. Residences are the hotel’s contemporary serviced apartments, located in the Victorian townhouses beside the hotel. Feeling peckish? Dining comes courtesy of the hotel’s restaurant, 116 at The Athenaeum, offering an informal setting for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and an award-winning afternoon tea. Elsewhere in the hotel, you’ll find The Bar, The Spa, the 24-hour gym and the tenth-floor residents’ lounge, The View.
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