Monday, 20 January 2014

London Treats - Basilico, Mildred's, Inspiral Lounge and Cookies and Scream

We are so very lucky that we have a family base in London, but before the weekend we really hadn't used it enough. In fact we'd only been once and that was last year for Mr B's birthday, so we decided to head down there for the weekend - I think we all needed a change of scenery after being couped up in the house with colds for the past week or so.

We arrived kind of late on Friday night so decided to order pizza from somewhere that Mr B had heard of. I've been doing really well sticking to a no oil & plant based diet recently, but couldn't pass up the chance to try some. Getting a vegan pizza delivered does not happen often (actually never, it was Mr B's first delivered pizza ever), so it was a rare treat.

The pizza was from Basilico - a non vegetarian pizza company with branches across London. They have two vegan pizza options on their menu - 'Vegan Margarita' and 'Vegan Vegetarian'. We had a 18 inch woodfired pizza delivered from their Limehouse/ Canary Wharf location in 45 minutes.

I've tried two other pizza companies that do vegan pizza in the UK - Mr Singh's in Birmingham and Pizza Face in Brighton.  I've been to Mr Singh's several times and really like it, but I wasn't impressed by Pizza Face at all. Basilico was great, in fact pretty amazing. The base was lovely and the toppings and 'cheese' worked really well together (I believe they use Violife). If you are in the area I recommend you give them a go.

We also went to Mildred's in Soho on Saturday for late lunch. Mr B comes here all the time (in fact he often says it's his favorite in central London) and I've been once before.

I ate;
gyoza dumplings with mirin and soy dipping sauce
smoked tofu and bean sausages served with carrot parsnip potato mash, wilted kale and pear cider gravy
Booja Booja Vanilla Ice Cream

 We really like it here and will be sure to return on other occasions. Despite the tables being close together and there not being much room we've found them to be really accommodating to us with a pushchair and toddler in tow.

We also got chance to visit somewhere I'd wanted to go for ages - Inspiral Lounge in Camden. I adore their kale chips (which you can find in health food stores around the UK) and have tried their raw deserts before too (UK branches of Wholefoods). We made our way to Camden and being a Sunday we actually found somewhere free to park a short walk away. Sadly I didn't get many pictures as Small was quite upset and I was busy making sure she had plenty to eat.

I had some kind of green drink (they are already premade in a chiller, so not 100% sure what was in it) but after a few sips I abandoned it as being horrible. I also had a 'Vegan Lasagne - Gluten Free Pasta, Almond Milk Bechamel and Chunky Vegetables' and we had a side of some type of dhal with potatoes. I'd seen other people's reviews and pictures of the food here before, but I'm sad to say mine didn't look quite like this. In terms of looks (you can see for yourself) it looked a bit like a microwave meal, but I'm happy to say it was really tasty. Mr B had their 'hot special' of the day which was a mushroom, lentil and polenta stack.

It was really busy when we arrived, but after a few minutes we managed to find a table. It was absolute chaos in there and after fighting to see what was on offer in the cabinets none of the staff offered to explain to us how ordering works, so we ended up with two mains and having to pay more and line up again to buy a side dish. The food was nice, but the 'dining experience' was awful. It was just so packed full of people (not all of them polite). They had two payment points and wouldn't let us pay for kale chips from the same till as the food, so after having to line up yet again (3 times in all) we decided to skip pudding and instead head to Cookies and Scream.

Cookies and Scream is an all vegan and gluten free bakery based in the Dingwalls Gallery area of the market at Camden Lock. They sell a variety of goodies and well as some hot food and you can either take away or perch on a stool at their 'cookie bar' and eat your goodies there.

Since discovering that my years of tummy aches were down to a gluten intolerance I steer clear of it whenever I can, that's was I was so excited to learn everything they sell is gluten free! We tried their Chocolate Chip Cookies, Chicos, Chocola Dounts, Chillin Coconut Cabanas and Cookie Ice Cream Sandwiches (not all in one go, we got takeaway!). Everything was amazing!

It was a pretty epic weekend and I really enjoyed spending some quality time with my two favorite people!


  1. I got so excited when I first realised we could order from Basillico!
    When I first saw that photo I thought it was a micro meal, when I've seen photos they usually look so well presented.
    I don't like that far from there, but never been for food as it's always heaving. But we have tried the ice creams
    I haven't really got a sweet tooth, but Cookie and Scream! OMG! I had a cinnamon/pecan thing and it was amazing!

    1. Yeah Basilico was great, we'll definitely order from them again! I found Inspiral such a letdown as I'd really wanted to go for ages - the food tasted nice but it was just crazy crazy busy in there, I won't be attempting it again with a pushchair!

  2. I can't wait to try Basilico, that pizza looks great. I haven't been to Cookies & Scream for ages, I need to get back to Camden during the day soon, we keep missing them because they close by the time we can get up to North London once Nick's finished work.

    1. It was definitely worth the effort going to Camden (we don't usually go) for Cookies and Scream :) It was also quite nostalgic as I haven't been in about 10 years or more!