A veggie joint that meat-eaters will like? We’ve heard that before, but then, Ceremony is different
We all eat veggie food all the time. Cereal and toast, cheese sarnies, tomato pasta, omelettes, quiches maybe, vegetable soup. We just don’t call it veggie food. And we don’t tend to go out and eat it. Apparently. If the number of veggie restaurants in London is anything to go by.
So when one opens that claims to be the joint that will pull the carnivores in as well, we all tend to take notice. Ceremony in Tufnell Park is one such place and has had the biggie critics swarming there to, mostly, sing its praises. Allegedly, food without meat can be quite tasty.
Our point is it seems a bit of a mindset, this whole veggie food/restaurant things for meat eaters. It’s no big deal most of the time, but if you’re putting your hand in your wallet and making an evening of it, only a bit of flesh will do. Can Ceremony change that?
Well, it probably isn’t trying and probably shouldn’t. The menu is composed pf reimagined British classics that ‘happen to have no meat’, which shows the tip-toey way restaurateurs have to approach a no-meat menu so the carnivores don’t get in a flap.
Behind the restaurant are two enterprising folk, Ali Dedianko, creative director of London Beer Week, and Joe Stokoe, a former bartender at Milk and Honey, which tells you all you need to know about the accompanying bar.
Sweet potato curry with biryani, pappardelle in pea puree, leek rarebit, duck egg with polenta and mushrooms, dumplings in a bean broth, cheese platters: it’s all comforting, munchified, and aimed to please.
The idea of smaller veggie plates and cocktails in a local spot is a cracking one but you can’t help but think the ambition must be greater. But can it measure up to Kin, Ethos, Vanilla Black, and what about the estimable Club Mexicana at Pamela? I suppose it doesn’t have to really. It’s carving its own niche and that is the always the sign of a good restaurant, whether it has former living creatures on the menu or not.