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“Vegetarian food at its best” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Vanilla Black

Vanilla Black
17- 18 Tooks Court, London EC4A 1LB, England (Bloomsbury / Holborn)
020 7242 2622
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Ranked #2,919 of 17,998 Restaurants in London
Price range: $38 - $154
Cuisines: Vegetarian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romance, Doing business, Special occasions, Entertaining clients
Dining options: Breakfast/Brunch, Lunch, Dinner, Reservations, Late Night
Neighborhood: Bloomsbury / Holborn
Description: Your mother's mantra of "eat your vegetables" probably never brought to mind dishes quite like this. Vanilla Black restaurant, originally from York but now located in the City of London near Chancery Lane, smashes the stereotype of bland, lentil-laden hippie dishes. Instead, Vanilla Black takes a modern, imaginative and ambitious approach to vegetarian cuisine. Result? It is the only vegetarian restaurant in London that's recommended in the Michelin Guide. At Vanilla Black, it's not "vegetarian cooking", it's "vegetable cuisine". The dining areas are spacious and done with art deco-esque flair, Vanilla Black's cool and comfortable dining room sets the stage for its innovative cuisine. Dishes such as hickory smoked duck egg and Ducketts Caerphilly pudding and sweet potato vindaloo with saffron risotto are sure to make an impression on even the most diehard carnivore. Vanilla Black's desserts like carrot cake and orange sorbet with crystallised coriander delight the palate.
woking
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
7 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Vegetarian food at its best”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 28, 2014

The restaurant is a little off the beaten track but once we had found it, it provided a great welcome on a cold and wet night in January. The restaurant is not big but set out well and the overall decor and atmosphere provided a warm and comfortable setting for a special occasion.

We had starters, mains and dessert and each dish had the wow factor with each of us trying each other's. Beautifully presented and thoughtfully and often cleverly assembled. Some of the flavours were amazing . One of the reasons for eating out is to experience food that you simply could not do at home - and this does exactly that. The service was very good too.

This is upmarket vegetarian at it's very best.

  • Visited January 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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336 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
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  • English first
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English first
London, United Kingdom
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
12 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Implausibly tasty”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2014

The place smells gorgeous from the moment you walk in. We had to suspend our disbelief at the menu a little (brie ice cream?) but it was all delicious, and the flavours blended expertly. Smart surroundings, and attentive service without being intrusive. It always feels like a good sign when a restaurant has a decent house wine, and here it's a very nice Picpoul. It's not a place for hard-core chocolate lovers, however, with only milk or white included in the desserts, but we had a very happy evening there regardless.

  • Visited January 2014
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Bishops Stortford, United Kingdom
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
6 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“Relaxed friendly place with imaginative menu”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 11, 2014 via mobile

I took my wife here for her birthday.. VB did not disappoint.. the service we some of the best I've experienced, friendly and attentive.. the food inventive , unusual but in good way, excellent value will definitely return.

  • Visited January 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
London, United Kingdom
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Fabulous choice for a birthday dinner.”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2014

Everything was faultless. The service was efficient and friendly, and there was a lovely atmosphere. On a Saturday evening in July the restaurant was full. The food was presented beautifully and tasted exquisite. It was hard to choose from the menu; it all looked so appealing. My partner and I always share our dishes, and agreed that this was the best vegetarian meal we've had in London.
Although I'd read reviews which suggested that some of the food combinations and flavours were rather odd, we didn't find that to be the case.
It was an ideal restaurant for a special occasion.

  • Visited July 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
11 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
“Little Choice”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 27, 2013

I recently had lunch at Vanilla Black. I was struck by the limited choice available with an offer of just 2 starters, 3 mains and 3 (I think ) deserts. The starters were a bit pretentious. I chose the yellow pea soup with marmite dumplings which was bland. The main course was however very tasty, but I have to say overall, I would expect a bit more choice from a restaurant which is aiming to be a fine dining experience.

  • Visited December 2013
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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