REVIEW: Ethos, Fitzrovia
At lunch we can just about do it, but dinner-wise, 9 times out of 10 there’s got to be some meat on our plate to keep us happy.
That said, we’re always keen to try new things, and a self-serve vegetarian restaurant (the economical comida por quilo system and central location set gimmick alarm bells clanging) fitted the bill.
Steps from the maelstrom that is Oxford Circus, we weren’t sure a canteen-style experience would be the relaxing stop off that’s necessary – but Ethos balances a quirky concept with beautiful, serene interiors and a laid-back lunchtime crowd. A fire burns at the far end of the seating area, which is dotted with floor-to-ceiling tree trunks.
High banquettes line the walls, and huge windows allow for people-watching on busy Eastcastle Street. And the food? Well, it looks stunning – cornucopias of saffron, lime green and carrot orange salads look fit to burst with antioxidants, sat alongside troughs of warm curry, heaps of hummus and babaganoush.
Huge, sunshine yellow yolks run out of giant Scotch eggs, while bright quinoa and rice dishes jostle for attention and halloumi bites and herby potatoes ensure no one leaves hungry. ‘Fake’ meat is on offer too – we tried seitan ribs (after being informed the lack of gluten meant they go easier on the tummy than other meat substitutes) but they’re no match for the slow-cooked meats London’s currently obsessed with (Polpo, always Polpo).
The only food we weren’t sad to leave behind (you could easily pile £30 worth of food onto two plates, everything looks so good) was dessert – the dry-looking, overly beige display of gluten-free muffins and banana breads didn’t appeal after all that colour. Offset all that good behaviour by making your way through the booze menu – on a Thursday night in London, it’s probably the best dessert there is.
Amy @ FashionBite xx
Average price: £15 a plate
Address: 48 Eastcastle Street, London W1W 8DX