Updated: Aug 10, 2021
As Covid restrictions are lifting throughout the UK, restaurants, bars, and cafés are reopening as well - and we’re ready to go back. It’s been a minute since we last experienced the crowded tables and loud bar chatter. To start this summer on a sustainable note, why not give a go to London’s zero-waste establishments? Discover our selection below.
Founded by Skye Gyngell, the Spring restaurant is located within the ‘New Wing’ of Somerset House. What makes it exceptional? 40 percent of the fruit and vegetables grown in the UK end up being discarded before reaching any shops - Spring counteracts the phenomenon with its innovative ‘Scratch’ menu. The said menu uses these unloved fruit and veg and transforms them into fine-dining excellence. This set menu is switched up every day and only available between 5.30pm and 6.30pm. To go even further in their sustainable approach, they’ve recently been experimenting to erase all single-use plastics in their kitchens.
On the outskirts of the Vassal neighborhood in south London, you’ll find the charming Café Van Gogh. Set in a Van Gogh-themed décor, this café offers an assembly of homely evening meals, weekday lunches, and brunches for all tastes. They aspire to be completely zero waste: they’ve gotten rid of single-use plastics and use exclusively compostable containers. Café Van Gogh not only strives to be environmentally friendly, they are a social enterprise. In partnership with Toucan Employment, they run a programme of ‘on-the-job training’ giving more access to paid employment for people with disabilities.
Silo’s concept was thought up in Australia back in 2011. The prompt was straightforward: ‘not having a bin’ - and from this was born a first restaurant in Brighton in 2014, followed by another one in London. Their entire system was made to be zero waste: from their up-cycled furniture to their home-milled flours, the heart of Silo resides in a strong respect for the environment. Located in Hackney Wick, let yourself be tempted by their original dishes whilst overlooking the canal.
Discover - Jikoni, the country’s first independent restaurant to reduce their emissions to neutral. Located in the centre of Marylebone, the vibrant Jikoni is committed to reducing their impact on the planet. How? Among other initiatives, Chef Ravinder Bhogal and her team’s Comfort & Joy service: vegetarian and vegan meal boxes - with produce obtained from local businesses, and 100% compostable containers.
To finish off, let us introduce Farmacy, set in a lovely ancient London building in Notting Hill. All ingredients on the plant-based menu originate from their farm in Kent - yes, their farm - or from local producers. Opened in 2016, the vegan restaurant is popular for its sophisticated and original Earth Bowls.