Vanimal is a restaurant that has been around for less than a year, and already it’s gotten rave reviews from vegetarians and meat lovers alike. Part of their manifesto is “No meat, still lots of fun!” and I found that to be true when I headed there with a co-worker last month.
Their “catch of the day” isn’t seafood, but a selection of fresh vegetables, purified with ozone water, and served homemade infused oil, pickle juice, and premium sea salt. How could you not feel healthier just from reading it off the menu?
The freshness of the salad was just as impressive as its size. Moreover, the many layers and textures put it a step above most salads. My only complaint? Not enough avocado. In my opinion, every salad needs more avocado.
Bonus: the little bottles of salad dressing were the cutest. We had so much fun dispensing the dressing over our plates in little drops!
Grilled Vakitori. This for me was the highlight. I had the black and white garlic, eggplant with yuzu miso, and sweet potato with mustard oil. The garlic was especially delectable with a subtle sweetness. This alone would be worth a return visit.
Butternut squash and apple soup with chestnut and topped with cinnamon foam. The flavours complemented one another, but I was hoping for a slightly thicker consistency. A solid dish nonetheless.
The only letdown in the meal was the fried potato dual with paprika aioli, which was simply regular potato and sweet potato wedges. It wasn’t a bad dish, but maybe because we’d already had our fill of potato from the skewers, it just didn’t have enough “punchy” flavours to lift all that starch.
Leeches Blood, comprising of vodka, beetroot juice, lime juice, fresh pomegranate fruit and liqueur, and kaffir leaf. Can something be boozy and healthy? Apparently so.
Rum & Tea, comprising of chamomile and lemongrass-infused rum, grapefruit juice, lemon juice, chamomile syrup, and fresh thyme. It tasted exactly as described – rum and tea, in the yummiest way possible.
There were several other specialty cocktails on the menu, and I’d love to try those another time, along with their desserts. We didn’t get to try them this time, but the table next to ours ordered this chocolate-y concoction that looked amazing!
While I probably won’t give up meat entirely, I’ve been opting for meatless meals more often in the last couple of years. At Vanimal, I didn’t find myself hungry or craving for meat, which is sometimes the case. And with a fun and creative menu, I’d definitely head back to see what else they have to offer!
Shop 1, Cadogan, 150 Belcher’s Street, Kennedy Town, Western District
Tel: 2872 8880