As a food-writer perennially exploring the latest in culinary circles, I don’t always have the privilege of frequently returning to my old favourites.
Yet, there is the one unassuming vegetarian restaurant (and it’s self-service no less), which never fails to draw me back. If you know, you know…
Tucked away behind Regent Street, Tibits is the London chapter of Hiltl – the decades-old establishment in Zurich which holds the title of the oldest, continually open vegetarian restaurant in the world.
The philosophy behind this all-day restaurant is simple – focusing on relaxed, homemade dishes which imbibe seasonal and global inspirations to broaden vegetarian and vegan cooking. Choosing from the plethora of salads, soups, hot dishes and desserts arranged on the buffet-style food boat at the centre, you pay by the weight of your food.
Quintessential classics (such as the Swiss dried green bean salad with walnuts) sit beside more modern and worldly dishes here – think Thai-style with apple and ginger or wakame with glass noodles.
The varied profile of diners here is always telling of Tibits’ broad appeal. Even my most carnivorous of friends can’t help but pile their plates shamelessly high when we visit!
The mood at lunch is more casual, but the dim lighting and candles add a cosy touch during dinner. In the summer months, you can so easily while away a good part of your evening sitting in the lively outdoors area on the pedestrianised Heddon street, with a crisp white wine and refreshing summer salad!
While this winter through to spring, the restaurant has introduced a Swiss special – a fondue feast complete with bread and potatoes for dipping, wine and shots of Kirsch (to be downed if you lose your bread in the cheese!).
Recently finding ourselves nostalgic for our happy place, Switzerland, mother and I eschewed the new openings in town, in favour of revisiting this old classic…
Indulgently rich, melted cheese (a vegan version is available on request); carbs and other veggie delights.
It was the perfect Saturday, snuggled under blankets outdoors as the evening slipped by boisterously around us!
Until next time, Tibits!
More details on booking the fondue special, on their website
12-14 Heddon St, Mayfair, London W1B 4DA