The Detox Kitchen
Time Out says
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The flagship restaurant from the group behind a small chain of health-eating delis.
When you find yourself queuing for a wheat- and dairy-free salad next to a small dog in a luxury carry pouch, you know what kind of establishment you’re in. This is the first sit-down café by the creators of the popular Detox Kitchen range of deliver-to-your-door food cleanses. The space itself is perfectly nice, if slightly sterile – a large, whitewashed room with benches upholstered in hospital-green fabric. The plastic-surgery-clinic waiting room feel is probably intentional – DK is all about whipping that bod into shape. Indeed, on our visit a large number of its clientele were Sweaty Betty’d up to the eyeballs, having, apparently, all just arrived from yoga.
The spread of salads on display on the counter was attractive, but we found the ordering system perplexing, and the glossy staff too harried to explain it in anything more than a slightly impatient way, even though it wasn’t that busy. You choose a £3 ‘protein’, and then add your choice of small (£3.95), medium (£5.95) or large (£7.95) salad as an accompaniment. Portions were generous and many of the salads full of flavour, particularly the kale, aubergine and miso. Roasted cauliflower in a cumin yoghurt dressing was also light and refreshing, but a quinoa and spring onion combination disappointingly bland. The ‘proteins’ were nice enough – the (cold) paprika-spiced veggie burger, made with red lentils and chickpeas, was wholesome, and the egg wrap pretty ingenious – essentially a tortilla, but using a thin houmous and veggie filled-omelette instead of a dreaded carb. So far, so virtuous. But a matcha latte with almond milk was, despite its bright green colour, entirely devoid of flavour, and took forever to arrive.
But truth be told, poor service and confusing pricing ruined our experience. When we checked our bill, mains had dramatically risen in price, with one ‘protein’ leaping from £3 to £5.90. Prices on the board were for takeout only and if you wanted the eat-in cost you had to ask – bad practice, in our book. Fans of the DK brand (which include Gwyneth Paltrow) will probably enjoy this place’s holier-than-thou eats. But it needs to smooth out some issues before it’s somewhere we’d return to, even if it’s in its salad days.
10 Mortimer St
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