It’s been a very long time since someone else has made me a Sunday Roast since going vegan and I have to say it’s been missed.
Don’t get me wrong I make a cracking Sunday dinner, my favourite is stuffed aubergine. But you can’t quite replace the feeling of a good pub roast and needing to lie down when you get home.
In Cheltenham there aren’t too many places that even do a vegan Sunday Roast, but The Botanist in the Brewery Quarter is one of the few.
So for a half-term treat I decided it would be nice to take my son for a meal that mummy didn’t spend three hours cooking.
After booking a table early in the week we headed down on Sunday afternoon for 12.30pm.
It didn’t take long to choose our food as there’s usually only one maybe two vegan options on the menu for somewhere that doesn’t specialise in the cooking.
For the adult dinner it was £22.50 for three courses (two was £18.50), and for it I had garlic mushrooms served with toast for starter; mushroom, red lentil and chestnut roast for main; and caramelised banana sundae with biscoff sauce, honeycomb, popcorn and vegan vanilla ice cream for dessert.
The child’s offering was £6.95 for the vegetable chestnut roast with vegan vanilla ice cream for dessert, they were out of the usual jelly that they’d offer with it.
I always realise after I’ve ordered that the children’s portion is just as big as the adults just on a smaller plate. So you can feel like you’re spending double the money just for more room for your gravy to fill.
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Now a nut roast is a very safe offering when it comes to vegan roasts, and I have to say this one looked as dry as they often do.
But after the lovely waiter brought us some extra gravy, the dish did a fabulous job of soaking it all up and was really quite filling and comforting.
The biggest shock factor of the meals was the mystery Marmite margarine that came with the garlic mushrooms. It wasn’t mentioned on the menu and looked too thick and creamy to be normal spread so my curiosity peaked as I enquired to it’s nature.
They say you either love or hate Marmite, but I’ve found I don’t really agree and am somewhat of a fence sitter when it comes to the savoury condiment.
However, my son, five, was not a fan and chose to have his toast plain rather than try it twice.
I couldn’t have eaten all of it, but it blended the mushrooms well with the toast and I can say with more gumption that although it was a surprise, it wasn’t an unpleasant one.
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The main course was originally served with massive Yorkshire puddings but unfortunately the waiter rushed back and said that they weren’t actually vegan before we touched them.
This is a common occurrence in many places, they don’t offer vegan Yorkshire puddings because they can’t wrap their heads around a world without egg as a binding / fluffy agent – but it can be done, I can do it, and it would be really quite special if places put a bit more effort into developing a vegan Yorkie recipe.
It’s not that I don’t like extra roasties, I just like (plant based) Yorkshires more.
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For dessert my son had a small bowl of vanilla ice cream, which without a huge shock he devoured. We don’t go out for food often so when we do he makes the most of the sweet offerings.
For me, the absolutely formidable banana sundae, which as you can see from the pictures was a sight for sore eyes.
I did send it back because it crossed my mind that the honeycomb might have honey in it, but I was promised it didn’t.
No ice cream is worth free bee labour after all.
The total cost came to £43.82 – £9.50 for the drinks and £29.45 for the food, with a 12.5 per cent service charge on top of that.
As a very rare treat I was not disappointed, it was lovely to colour with my son whilst our food was cooked rather than cooking whilst he coloured.
It wasn’t cheap and I really do wish more places tried harder with the Yorkshire pudding, but with crisp, bright veggies and a flavourful nut roast with an ice cream bigger than me to share, it’s hard to complain.