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Review, Plant Café: ‘Delicious vegan food, friendly staff and a relaxed atmosphere’

PUBLISHED: 19:00 05 November 2020

Seitan kebab at Plant Café, Woodbridge

Seitan kebab at Plant Café, Woodbridge

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Nicola Warren and her husband Phil pay a visit to Plant Café at its new home on Woodbridge Thoroughfare.

Bean chilli at Plant Café, WoodbridgeBean chilli at Plant Café, Woodbridge

Food

It feels more important than ever to support local businesses at the moment.

So, on a day off from work, my husband Phil and I went to Woodbridge, which has an abundance of local shops and places to eat.

Chocolate cake from Plant Café, WoodbridgeChocolate cake from Plant Café, Woodbridge

We arrived at lunchtime, so headed straight for Plant Café, somewhere I hadn’t managed to visit when it was still in Ipswich.

The café only relocated to Woodbridge Thoroughfare last month, so it was nice to see it so busy when we arrived.

As is the new normal, we entered wearing masks, and checked in on the NHS app by scanning the QR code.

We were then shown to the conservatory area and chose a table to sit at. The whole place felt very light, modern and airy.

Victoria sponge from Plant Café, WoodbridgeVictoria sponge from Plant Café, Woodbridge

There was a large menu to choose from, for both food and drink, but I finally settled on a Belvoir Elderflower Presse and Phil wanted to try the Bundaberg Ginger Beer.

We took a bit longer to decide what to order for lunch. There were plenty of smaller dishes to choose from, such as sandwiches, paninis jacket potatoes and soup of the day, vegan sausage rolls and ‘cheese’ scones, and dirty fries.

Main lunch options included Kerala cauliflower curry served with rice or jacket potato and salad, and black bean and sweet potato burger, burger sauce and pickles in a brioche bun, served with salad and chips.

After taking a while to decide - I don’t eat meat, so it’s nice to have so much to choose from on a café menu – Phil ordered the bean chilli with brown rice and I asked for the seitan kebab strips with warmed pitta bread, chips and salad. I chose chicken-style seitan (the other option was chilli and garlic) and garlic mayo. The other choices of sauce were burger sauce, mayo, barbecue or tomato.

The lunches took a little while to arrive, as you’d expect of freshly made food on the first day of half term.

They were certainly worth the wait. I filled the warm pitta with some of the salad, the crispy on the edges and succulent in the middle seitan, and the garlic mayo, which I couldn’t tell was vegan at all. Delicious. I had a huge pile of perfectly golden, crispy fries to get through, which I dipped into Stokes tomato sauce. There was also some really tasty homemade coleslaw on my plate.

Phil said his generous portion of bean chilli was the quintessential winter warmer, and was lip-tingling without being too hot.

After finishing, we realised our car parking ticket would soon be expiring, and we still had Woodbridge Emporium to visit for Christmas books for our daughter, and Woodbridge Greengrocers for our Halloween pumpkin, so we decided to get a couple of slices of cake to take home to have with a cup of tea at home later.

Snuggled under a blanket on the sofa that afternoon, I thoroughly enjoyed the rich, fudgy, moist chocolate cake, which came with a generous amount of icing. The Victoria sponge was a slightly drier, denser cake, but what a rise, it was huge! This was sandwiched together with vegan icing and jam.

It is disappointing that, so soon after they opened in Woodbridge, Plant Café won’t be able to have customers sitting in for a month, but the good news is that they have recently announced on their Facebook page that they will be open for takeaway. Keep an eye on their Facebook page for their takeaway menu, which will no doubt include some delicious vegan food.

Drinks

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There was a wide selection of hot drinks, including coffees, English breakfast tea, Novus herbal teas and white or dark hot chocolate, with the option to have vegan squirty cream and marshmallows too.

Soft drinks included cans of San Pellegrino and bottles of Appletiser, as well as orange juice and apple juice.

Atmosphere

I felt really relaxed in the café, which was busy with customers, including individuals, couples, friends and families. The interior is modern, and there are plants, and pasta made from flour from Woodbridge Tide Mill, for sale.

Family friendly

The café is certainly family friendly, with a whole page of the menu dedicated to children’s options. These include meat-free nuggets with chips and beans and vegan meatballs with pasta in a tomato and basil sauce. Children’s sandwiches and drinks are also available.

Price

The bill, for two mains, two slices of cake and two drinks, came to £26, which I think is really good value for money.

Highlight

The food (as we won’t be able to agree which dish was best, because we both enjoyed our lunches so much).

Summary

Delicious vegan food, friendly service and a relaxed atmosphere. I’m so glad we got to pay them a visit at their new home in Woodbridge Thoroughfare.

- Our food reviews are always independent. They are the opinion of the reviewer based on their experience of the venue when they visited. The establishment is not aware of our visit, is not informed we intend to write a review and bills are paid by the reviewer. The choice of places reviewed is also independent and is not based on venues which do or do not advertise in our publications.


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