Lucie Loves... Grow Wild // Wild Food Cafe 2016 spring menu launch and free* wild flower seed giveaway
Meet Aiste and Joel, the beautiful people behind the wonderful Wild Food Cafe – a pretty damn special veggie and vegan restaurant in London. Nestled above Neal’s Yard Remedies in Covent Garden, this is the sort of place where you can fill your plate and your belly guilt-free.
I first moved to London in October 2012 for a job at Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, to be part of a small start up-esq project called Grow Wild. Almost four years of living in this incredible city and – until today – I’d never eaten at the Wild Food Cafe. I’m ashamed to call myself a foodie! 🙈
Today was time to change all that.
After two weeks of stuffing myself silly – and overindulging on anything and everything in California, I woke up early for a much-needed 6:45am yoga class. It’s really hard getting yourself up at that time, but once you’re there, lay on your mat, guided by Tim’s soothing meditation, you’re all good.
But… it was tough. I felt weak. Unfit. I need to feel strong again.
However, feeling slightly more virtuous post-yoga, with my mind all zen-like, I looked forward to feeding my soul with some hearty food.
This Spring, Grow Wild and the Wild Food Cafe are teaming up to get you sowing, growing and eating wild! Wild Food Cafe’s delicious Ayurvedic Salad includes wild nettles, rocket and garlic, as well as a scattering of edible flowers. Each purchase of the salad will also come with a FREE packet of UK native wild flower seeds courtesy of Grow Wild.
Both Grow Wild and the Wild Food Cafe believe in the power of plants. Whether through transforming spaces and bringing communities together through wild flowers, or by using wild, fresh, colourful gourmet ingredients to make you feel great, wild flowers and plants connect us with nature and have a positive impact on our bodies and lives.
Wild Food Cafe’s menu changes each season, but people still come in regularly to feast in their famous cake selection. The cakes are so filling and nutritious that they’re almost a meal on their own!
What we ate…
- Hummus and raw crackers
- Sweet potato wedges
- Wild rolls
- Wild spring burger
- Stuffed Romano pepper
- Ayurvedic super salad - don’t forget to ask for your free Grow Wild wild flower seed packet when you order this dish. *Warning* Seeds are not growing, not for eating!
We arrived and chatted about the amazing work that Grow Wild is doing with communities across the UK, all thanks to funding from the Big Lottery Fund and the experts at RBG Kew. I love it when you get two brands coming together to collaborate on an idea. Especially one as organic and brilliant as this – excuse the pun!
Aiste and Joel have worked hard to ensure that the Wild Food Cafe vibe is everything they hoped it would be. From creating a happy environment for their staff, to pouring love and energy into the food on the menu. It’s a pretty cool place. They also have wifi, which is perfect for freelancers like me who get to stop by their favourite haunts for a bite to eat while doing a bit of work.
Over dinner Joel – who has traveled the world with his love of all things raw – spoke passionately about transforming humanity’s relationship to food through the practice of mindful nutritional choices. He believes that food is a catalyst for change. We also discussed the importance of wild spaces, such as those promoted by Grow Wild and the joy of eating both seasonal and also wild foraged foods, eating seasonally and being in tune with the cycles of nature.
About Grow Wild
Supported by the Big Lottery Fund and led by Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew; Grow Wild inspires communities, friends, neighbours and individuals across the UK to come together to transform local spaces, by sowing, growing and enjoying native wild flowers.
We believe that this simple act of creativity can turn spaces into beautiful, inspiring and colourful wildlife havens; encouraging people to care for and delight in the nature around them. Any space can be transformed – from balconies to old boots, streets to shared spaces, boxes to buckets. Anything that will hold soil, water and seeds will do: just let your imagination grow wild.
Photography © Lucie Kerley