The Plant Room in Brighton Square is the newest veggie spot in the Lanes, opening just a month ago as part of the relocated homeware store, Edited. The store’s implicit quirk is reflected in the cafe’s understated decor of smart neutral tones, along with school desk style benches and of course, an abundance of plant life.
Catering for both veggies and vegans, the cafe offers a range of sandwiches and a generous cake and pastry selection alongside the usual caffeinated suspects. Bonsoy milk, reportedly a premium variety of soya, is the dairy alternative of choice for an extra 30p. Its silky smooth consistency makes for the perfect latte and is, as we witness, conducive to making pretty patterns. Unfortunately the brand still succumbs to the age old problem of curdling in the filter coffee we order after.
Popping in for a late lunch, we aren’t disappointed despite the fact that the last rainbow sandwich has been mistakenly labelled for a ‘fooled pork’ sandwich (aka spicy barbecue jack fruit). The ‘rainbow’ is a medley of colourful, crunchy veggies accompanied by creamy hummus; healthier though no worse off for it. A ‘nausage roll’ provides a satisfying alternative to unrelenting cravings of such guilty pleasures. The filling is a combo of scrambled tofu and crushed nuts owing to its wholesome meaty texture.
The rest of the cabinet gives way to a tempting display of handmade dessert options, including coconut and lime carrot cake, banana bread, chunky chocolate brownies, croissants, granola and a lonesome looking peanut butter cup. After much contemplation, we decide upon the latter and a slice of banana bread. While the banana bread is so-so, the peanut butter cup is crumbly, creamy and topped with gooey chocolate. And for a belly full of rainbow, its fleeting momentariness is just the token.
Though unassuming, The Plant Room offers a pleasant lunching experience situated in the transient calm of the heart of the Lanes. While there’s only a handful of treats on the menu, this is a great little find particularly for vegans; and from what we learned from the staff, a developing menu by a plant based chef duo is sure to keep us coming back for more. Though frankly, the peanut butter cups alone have ensured our prompt return.
Words by Cat Thompson