The Gate | Eating Out

I’m starting a new series “Eating Out”, where I put up a blog post and chat about a favourite place that I’ve eaten recently. Living in London, there are endless choices of places to eat out, so I do count myself lucky especially that the majority of what I eat is plant-based and dairy free. Although I’ve lived here my whole life, I discover places almost every other day and it gets me so excited! Just last week, it was one of my friends birthday, so to celebrate she introduced us to a restaurant in Hammersmith and it was probably one of the many finest and delicious places I have been to, yet. Their menu is based around Iraqi-Arabic cuisines modulated by French and Italian influence, which sounded so intriguing when I heard that.
Apart from that, it’s a vegetarian restaurant and even if you’re not into fruits, vegetables, legumes etc, and you’re a hardcore meat eater, I guarantee you’ll find something you’ll love. The flavours in all the dishes are so plentiful and the presentation is stunning, it makes you appreciate and savour every mouthful.

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We all started it off with their wide selection of freshly squeezed, superfood juices. I chose the “Carrot, ginger, beetroot and celery”, as it sounded as healthy as a fun juice can get and I love beetroot so hitting two birds in one stone is always good. It tasted amazing, especially with ice (make sure you ask for it on the side); perfect combination of sweet and spicy.

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As we did pick a main from the menu, we couldn’t help but order a few starters and sides that all sounded (and tasted) incredible! The first is “Mustard Seed Potato Cake” filled with spiced baby corn, courgette, carrot and green peas, served with a tamarind sauce, mint & coriander chutney. All four of the vegetables worked perfectly together, I’d highly recommend this one as a starter!

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As for the second, “Grilled Halloumi Chermula” – does that not look mouth wateringly gorgeous?!

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All starters were ridiculously good but my favourite, has to go to the “Miso Glazed Aubergine” and oh my! The taste was out of this world. The miso really does compliment the distinct flavour of the aubergine; a match made in heaven. One thing about this though is that it’s quite filling if you were to have it by yourself, so be generous with it and share.

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A big fan of soup myself, this one I would say does itself justice; “Soup of the Day: Tomato Soup” served with crusty bread. It was served warm and the subtle notes in the tomato really did come out perfectly in this dish.

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There were a variety of appetising dishes on the menu I wanted to order but I eventually chose the “Wild Mushroom Rotolo”, wrapped in thyme infused potato served on french beans, porcini velouté and finished with confit girlies. Just a heads up, if you are not a fan of mushrooms scroll down! Otherwise, every aspect of the dish was bursting with different spices and flavours from the thin potato wrap, oyster mushroom filling to the sweet and crispy grated sweet potato. Divine!
Everyone else’s mains looked decadent and picturesque and they all spoke about how good it all was. We all wiped our plates clean, and that truly explains the deliciousness of it all.

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Below: “Aubergine Schnitzel”, layered with applewood smoked cheddar, basil pesto, roasted red peppers and plum tomatoes, served with potato dauphinoise and pan fried kale, finished with a horseradish cream sauce.

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Below: “Tortillas” (best-seller), with two fillings of sweet potato, sweetcorn, goats’ cheese, chilli, lime and coriander; baked beetroot, feta and parsley, served with guacamole, sour cream and black bean pepper salsa. I’m now hungry just reading the ingredients..

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For the cheeky sides, we all got either the “Chunky herb polenta chips” or the “Roasted spiced sweet potato wedges” with garlic aioli and believe me when I tell you that the garlic aioli is by far the BEST chips dip I’ve laid my taste buds on! The polenta chips are deep fried, whilst the wedges are baked but both tasted so so more-ish.

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The place has a lovely cosy and chilled-out vibe to it, whilst also being under the name of fine dining. The interior design and layout was nice and open, it felt like a chic greenhouse with the wall length windows and industrial lightbulbs. Their hospitality was so great and we all felt so welcome from such friendly staff. I would definitely come here again!

If you’ve been searching for a new dining experience with high quality food or if you’re simply interested in trying vegetarian/vegan, I would highly recommend checking this place out. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed, just make sure you book in advance.
They have two branches; one in Hammersmith and another in Islington.
Check out the opening times here.

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