For gastronomy enthusiasts, it can be difficult to find good, upscale and plant-based restaurants these days. From a French Beef bourguignon to a German Bratwurst, it’s no secret that traditional gourmet food tends to be rich and meat-heavy. Luckily, Europe is becoming more and more vegan friendly as the years go by. Here is the list of the best vegetarian and vegan eateries on the continent…
Joia – Milan, Italy
Joia was the first vegetarian restaurant in Europe to receive a Michelin star. Pioneering chef Pietro Leemann’s philosophy of ‘natural cuisine’ came from travelling extensively throughout Europe and Asia and is based on organic produce and no meat. Fresh produce is sourced from small farms surrounding the city and menu options include a sixteen-course tasting menu, entitled ‘Zenith.’
Tian – Vienna, Austria
With three Gault-Millau toques and one Michelin star, Vienna’s vegetable restaurant Tian takes an experimental approach to cuisine. the Tian chefs draw on a multitude of rare and forgotten vegetables, fruit and assorted grains to create new and innovative dishes. The restaurant experience is described as a “culinary pleasure journey in 8 courses,” of which all ingredients are seasonal and sustainably produced. Head chef Paul Ivić believes vegetarian cuisine is an integral part of modern lifestyle.
L’Arpege – Paris, France
Three Michelin-starred L’Arpege is famous in Paris for its extensive tasting menus. Chef Alain Passard, who previously served red meat and poultry, decided to go all-vegetarian in 2001 and now creates indulgent dishes from seasonal vegetables and vegan ingredients.
Silo – London, UK
Doug McMaster, the genius chef behind The Silo, the world’s first zero-waste restaurant, works “always thinking of the trash can” when preparing daily menus, without wasting food scraps. Food is unprocessed, seasonal and used in its whole form to preserve nutrients. They have their very own flour mill, make their own oat milk and even churn their own butter.
Terre à terre – Brighton, UK
Terre à terre, a seaside vegan and vegetarian restaurant pushes the boundaries of traditional cuisine. Classically trained chefs Amanda Powley and Philip Taylor have been going since 1993 and believe the most interesting recipes arise from meat-free cooking. The restaurant is proud to boast that a high percentage of customers are actually non-vegetarians, who return time and time again due to the truly gourmet experience.
Haus Hiltl – Zurich, Switzerland
Founded in 1898, Haus Hiltl is certified in the Guinness World Records for being the world’s oldest vegetarian restaurant. Today, it is run by the fourth generation of the family and includes many vegan options too. Given Swiss food is often associated with meats and potatoes, Haus Hiltl is one of a kind. Besides their food, all of their wines are also vegan.
Lucky Leek – Berlin, Germany
Lucky Leek has been open since 2011 in Berlin and doesn’t just have vegan options, it is 100% vegan fine-dining. In 2019, Lucky Leek received a Michelin’s Bib Gourmand award which recognises excellent quality food at a great value price.