Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Vegan Traveller : Zizzi (Birmingham)

Zizzi is an Italian chain that has restaurants all around the UK. I have been to many of their different branches as a vegetarian before being vegan, However, I recently visited them as a vegan for the first time last weekend.
My friend booked a table at the Birmingham Zizzi in the mailbox. For those of you who don't know the mailbox is a rather posh shopping quarter of Birmingham so we felt very sophisticated walking past Harvey Nick's and Armani to go for our lunch.

Almost all Zizzi's have the same layout with a pizza oven on display in an open pizza kitchen, then there is a separate kitchen where the rest of the food is prepared which is not on show.
As it is a chain restaurant, service can be slower than other places but the waiters and waitresses do understand your needs.
But luckily in this Italian, you don't have to order "this without that" or that "instead of this" as they have a whole menu dedicated to vegans as well as a gluten free menu and a non-dairy menu!

Just like any ordinary Italian menu, there are starters, salads, pizzas, pasta's and dessert sections which are all vegan. Pizzas with vegan cheese, calzones with vegan ice cream and traditional garlic bread that is guess what? Vegan!

I ordered the green goddess salad and then shared it with my mother who was having the butternut salad from the main menu without the goat's cheese.

As you can see from the photo I did ask for the pesto to be kept separate but this is just a personal choice.
The greens were very fresh and I loved the orange blushed tomatoes as usual but I did feel like the salad was lacking something. There was a very small amount of cannellini beans and the ones I did try were of a very bad quality. Because of this, I doubt anyone could eat this salad without the green pesto as it would be a bit well ... bland.

My mum's salad was slightly better as it came with little soul breads which are delightful small white buns coated in an olive oil and salt topping. They were lovely and fresh.
This salad contained green lentils and therefore have more to it, but in my opinion, the butternut was a little over roasted and therefore lacked taste. Again I think you would struggle to eat the salad without its dressing which was a white sweet balsamic. Its a shame really as if they added more flavoursome vegetables to both the salads, I could guarantee we would have enjoyed them much more.
Looking at the menu now, next time I think I will order the vegan lentil ragu as I like the idea of a lentil and pasta combination!


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