Yes, Vegan! 5 marvellous meat-free menus
Searching for sustainable sustenance? We’ve got you covered with these great vegan eateries around Hampshire and Isle of Wight
No longer the sole preserve of the hippie contingent, plant-based food is officially on-trend. Whether you’re a committed vegan, meat-free Mondayer or just fancy something a bit healthier this Veganuary, here’s our pick of the best restaurants with vegan menus around Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.
Juice bar and café Rawberry scaled up from a popular market stall. Just off Winchester High Street with floor-to-ceiling windows, there’s loads here to tempt. Think healthy choccoberry porridge and toasted Hoxton sourdough, peanut butter & banana for brekkie. Come for quick-bite and tuck into post-shopping lunches like chipotle chickpea salad and sweet potato bagels. Detox smoothies – a specialty – are a perfect pick-me-up, especially when they’re sipped furtively behind a pair of oversized Raybans.
Offbeet New Forest, The Retreat, near Christchurch
Previously at Sunnyfields, Offbeet has now moved to The Retreat New Forest. The modern vegan menu and smart interiors are a great fit for this wellbeing hub, with its beautiful Airbnb rooms, yoga and gorgeous New Forest walks right on the doorstep. From cauliflower steaks to New Forest mushroom scallops, this is vegan food fine-dining style, all served up with imagination and flair.
The Beech Café, East Meon
Come for a walk in this beautiful stretch of the South Downs and make a pit stop at the Beech Café. Part of a 55-acre Sustainability Centre, everything it dishes up (veggie and vegan) is homemade. Fruit and veg is grown on-site by the Fitzroy Group, a local charity supporting people with learning disabilities. Specials change seasonally but you can be sure of healthy winter warmers. Think hearty vegetable soups, Moroccan vegetable tagine with spiced vegetable quinoa and roasted cauliflower, kale and chickpea bhuna with brown rice. Yum.
Café Thrive, Southampton
Nutritious food that tastes good and sits firmly in the cheap eats bracket? We need this vegan café this January! Meat-free and super-tasty, meaty burgers are crowned with crispy onions. You can also build your own salad box with veggies and dairy free cheese, too. The coffee is tasty and it’s organic, Fairtrade Foundation and Rainforest Alliance approved, so ticks all the right sustainability boxes too.
PEACH Vegan café, Newport, Isle of Wight
Serving planet-friendly meals alongside zero-waste household products, Peach Vegan Café is part of a growing movement. Winner of the Best Green Business in the 2021 Red Funnel Isle of Wight Awards, like many fellow small independent South Coast businesses it has a strong sustainable living focus. The menu is pretty wide-ranging, featuring everything from full vegan brekkies and pancakes to katsu curry and off-the-charts homemade cakes.