Ve­gan fare takes over from pies

Bath Chronicle - - NEWS - Elise Brit­ten Elise.brit­[email protected]­

A Bath restau­rant which has sat empty for months has been given a new lease of life, and the food on of­fer is more than a lit­tle dif­fer­ent. Roots and Shoots has moved into the for­mer Piem­i­nis­ter premises un­der the Bath Spa rail­way arch, and is of­fer­ing an en­tirely ve­gan, plant-based cafe menu. The new restau­rant sells Bris­tol Twenty cof­fees and a va­ri­ety of teas, with the full-range of cow’s milk sub­sti­tutes. It is open for break­fast from 7.30am with pas­tries and “fa­con” sand­wiches, and has other light meal op­tions through­out the day. De­spite re­plac­ing a meat-lover’s re­treat, as­sis­tant man­ager and head chef Lyn­d­sey Pat­ton says busi­ness has been boom­ing and Bath has been very wel­com­ing. She said: “It’s been re­ally nice chat­ting to peo­ple com­ing in. Ev­ery­one’s been so friendly and pos­i­tive. “We’ve been re­ally busy. Our most pop­u­lar choice has been our ve­gan mac and cheese. “Our other most pop­u­lar op­tion is the taster box which of­fers a bit of ev­ery­thing. “Then the sei­tan wrap which is made in house with chick­pea flour and loads of sea­son­ing, served with cran­berry sauce, red cab­bage and nut roast. “Fa­con has also been re­ally pop­u­lar in the morn­ings.” Along­side their hot food menu, the team keep on dis­play an al­lur­ing ar­ray of sweet treats - many of them baked at home. Roots and Shoots is the pas­sion project of co-own­ers and best friends Andy Mcma­hon and Matt Craig. Andy said: “We’re both from Bath, we went to school to­gether at St Greg’s up the road. “This place came up and we thought we’d give it a go. “We toyed with just be­ing veg­e­tar­ian, but thought why not go all the way?” In­ter­est in plant-based food has surged re­cently and the pair saw an open­ing in the mar­ket. Andy said: “We thought there was noth­ing like this in Bath at the mo­ment. “Bris­tol has lots of choice, but there’s not much here for easy, fast and con­ve­nient plant-based food.” Andy and Matt are rel­a­tively re­cent con­verts them­selves. Andy said: “Three to four years ago, we were both meat eaters, but grad­u­ally we moved to plant-based di­ets. “I was talk­ing to a cus­tomer the other day and we agreed that the more you look into it, the harder it is to go back. “The best thing you can do for the en­vi­ron­ment is give up meat and dairy. “And what­ever rea­son you do it for, you can know that you are help­ing all the other causes. “Once you re­alise how nice ve­gan food can be it gets eas­ier.” Lyn­d­sey said: “Just be­cause you’re ve­gan doesn’t mean you want to eat 100 per cent healthy all the time. “We have ex­cit­ing things planned in the New Year. We hope to do some­thing for Ve­gan­uary and start up Junk Food Fri­days.” Andy said: “In the spring and sum­mer we hope to do live mu­sic week­ends and make a nice lit­tle gar­den.” But for now, vis­i­tors are more in­ter­ested in the bas­ket of cosy blan­kets on of­fer. Roots and Shoots is cur­rently open­ing from 7.30am up un­til 7pm and even un­til 9pm be­tween Thurs­day and Satur­day, ac­cord­ing to de­mand.

Above, Karolina Pior and Lyn­d­sey Pat­ton at the new Roots and Shoots restau­rant un­der Bath Spa rail­way arch; left, some of the ve­gan food on of­fer

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