Offering hearty vegetarian food in the heart of Soho, this enduring establishment never fails to pull the punters who flock here for its quality cuisine, cosy character and outstanding value for money.
A consistent crowd-pleaser Mildreds has overlooked Soho’s cobbled Lexington Street for roughly two decades. If you’re accustomed to the area’s swarms and you aren’t precious about your privacy then you won’t have a problem with the venue’s challenging space. With its diner-style furniture, ceiling skylight and backdrop of curious prints the narrow interior is cool, comfortable, bright and unfussy.
An elegant upstairs dining room is perfect for private bookings of up to 24 people, where if the conversation diminishes the adorning Victorian porn will surely keep your party amused.
Modern, eclectic, effervescent and informal, this habitually popular haunt is rarely quiet, but don’t be deterred by the queues, Mildreds is well worth the wait. The predominately female clientele includes Soho’s prerequisite media denizens, resident bohemians and yummy mummies, and the compact table space may mean you end up rubbing shoulders with regular Keira Knightly while you’re tucking into your tofu. The service is generally pleasant given how busy it is, although certain staff can be a little curt under pressure.
With the exception of the daily specials list, Mildreds’ exclusively vegetarian and vegan menu is modified seasonally. Devout regulars return time again for familiar doses of its winning formula of fresh and organic international fodder. This is the perfect pit stop for a nutrition injection, whether you seek sustenance before a night out, or a detox thereafter. The multicultural menu includes many gluten-free and vegan friendly options, with takeaways available from midday, while the restaurant operates on a first-come, first-served basis.
To begin the Japanese gyoza dumplings are a delight, especially when dipped in the tangy mirin and soy dipping sauce. Entirely animal-free but deceptively meaty, they could satisfy the staunchest carnivore. Starters average at around £5.00 each with other highlights including the pan fried cherry tomato, halloumi and wilted spinach salad and the chargrilled artichoke crostini.
The substantially sized mains will challenge even insatiable appetites. The burrito, generously stuffed with refried beans, corn and red pepper, is smothered in perfect quantities of sour cream, salsa, guacamole and smoked cheddar without ever being too rich or soggy. The stir fried Asian vegetable dish provides your five-a-day, with tofu and cashew nut options. Served with brown rice or oriental wheat noodles the vegetables are cooked in sesame oil and teriyaki sauce with garlic and ginger for extra juiciness.
Mains are a steal at around £8.00, with desserts rarely topping £5.00. One pudding of note is the white chocolate and pistachio cheesecake: an incredibly sweet, purely indulgent treat that’s best tackled between two if you’re calorie counting.
For a rejuvenating kick Mildreds’ refreshing juices come in combinations of carrot, beetroot, apple, parsley, celery or ginger. Smoothie blends include: banana, honey and soya milk, strawberry, banana and apple or raspberry, yoghurt and honey. Most of the wine is organic, including the citrus-based Domaine St Paul Sauvignon sur lie, a fresh and light white with revitalising fruit flavours. There is also a range of beers and organic teas and coffees.
The Last Word
Mildreds’ revered reputation is not without reason, and although the crowds seem a little close for comfort at times, the food and atmosphere more than makes up for it. Undoubtedly one of the best vegetarian restaurants in London.