On a rare sunny day in October, the city farm where this cafe is based had a lot of mothers/nannies showing toddlers around the animals and plants, and a few sitting outside the cafe to eat (where you can get that authentic farm smell!). I opted to eat inside ;0. It seemed miles away from the one-time somewhat notorious Holloway road which is just a stones throw away.
Mains on offer when I visited were a fennel stew, gnocchi, 3 different vegetable soups and a selection of sandwiches. Apparently I was too late for the falafal which had sold out.
I asked if the stew was vegan, but before I got an answer the chef popped from behind and said it was not ready yet, would be another 40mins. He seemed genuinely apologetic as he asked how "strict" a vegan I was, because for the soups he was now using Marigold bouillon which contains lactose. At least he knew what he was talking about. Then he offered to make me up a special salad and I asked if I could have it with a sandwich, and he said the sandwiches already come with salad. So I settled for a vegan hummus samdwich and side salad.
I think the chef must have made a special salad for me anyway, because when he brought over my double door-stop monster of a hummus and carrot sandwich, it came with a salad that would not have looked out of place in a "fine-dining" resturant, except it was a very generous portion - an artful sculpture-like creation of artichoke, lettuce, grated beetroot and carrots, rolled up long slithers of cucumber, topped with fresh rocket and other spicy salad leaves I could not identify, and with a light olive oil dressing. I would guess that some of the ingredients were grown on the farm too. All for £4.50, which is what you normally pay just for a sandwich from a clone sandwich shop in London.
Both sandwich and salad were very tasty and filling. I asked the vegan status of the brownies and cakes on display, even though I knew I could not fit anything more in. The chef looked at his shoes again and shook his head. Well they had fresh fruit on display too and I'm sure he would have made me up a fruit salad if I'd wanted it.
Overall I enjoyed my visit. I would like to see more vegan options, but the chef would probably make you up something anyway if you ask. Obviously a good place for young families, but also if you want to get away from the tension of London and relax with some home-style veggie food and possibly pet an animal too.
Cons: Not meny vegan options