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Try Foodilic for a great raw deal

Restaurant that specialises in raw, vegetarian and vegan food has a laid-back, community feel – and merits a special journey

22 June, 2017 — By Tom Moggach

Foodilic offers a feast of feisty colour

WANT to be cheerful, healthy and full of life? Seldom get sick? Live like the Hunza people, who can hit a ripe 145 years?

These are the (tongue-in-cheek) claims of Foodilic in King’s Cross, a restaurant that specialises in raw, vegetarian and vegan food.

The owner, Peter Ilic, is a legend in the restaurant trade. He runs the bargain Little Bay restaurants, a couple of Foodilics in Brighton and has just launched an upmarket joint called TWID (That’s What I Do) in Battersea.

Raw food is his current obsession, driven both by a sharp eye for food fashion and a belief in its health benefits.

This branch of Foodilic trades on the lower stretch of Pentonville Road, not far from the excellent Pizza Union and opposite the Big Chill House bar.

Don’t expect a slick, big-bucks operation. This all-day venue has a laid-back, community feel. Labels for the seasonal dishes are hand-written in bright colours; the décor is more kooky than corporate.

As you walk in, there’s a selection of around 10 salads on your left – a riot of feisty colour.

You pay by the weight – £1.80 per 100g – so help yourself to as many as you wish.

This pricing formula also includes separate hot options such as beef lasagna, goulash, stuffed mushrooms and more.

Given the weather, I headed straight for the wonderful salads: green beans with orange zest and toasted hazelnuts; giant couscous; tomato with jalapeno and red onion; lightly pickled cauliflower with ginger.

These are expertly assembled, offering creative combinations and intriguing textures. Most unusual was a mix of mango, avocado and pomegranate – far more thrilling than you might expect.

The counter sits in the middle of the room; weigh, pay and take away your food, or sit down on one of the tables at the back.

The room is quirky, with not a straight edge in sight. The white walls and ceilings are curvy and highly polished.

Seating is in the shape of half a dozen round tables and stools, made from reclaimed wood.

I explored the hot food, too, including some meaty options. The falafel are more interesting than most, laced with beetroot to add a flash of crimson colour.

The beef lasagna was decent; goulash a touch on the chewy side.

Best by far were the Portobello mushrooms, stuffed with spinach, quinoa and pine nuts.

The selection of cakes is impressive. Many are made only with raw ingredients, such as a strawberry cheesecake, caramel cake or brownie – gluten free, dairy free and vegan, too. A more creamy sea-salt caramel cake was my particular favourite, washed down with a double espresso.

Now open seven days a week, Foodilic is a three-minute walk from King’s Cross Station.

If you hunt out vegan and raw food, it definitely merits a special journey.

Foodilic
260 Pentonville Road, N1
020 7278 7887
www.foodilickingscross.co.uk

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