Lottie Reeder

In my time, I have tried my fair share of vegan burgers. These plant-based patties have ranged from the dry bean burger on the BBQ, to the dreaded, breaded vegetable cutlet that is 99% sweetcorn - and that’s not even mentioning the divisive, soya-based mock meats. Whilst I have no objection to a beetroot-based, quinoa, kale, superfood synthesis, sometimes it just won’t satisfy.

When the Instagram algorithm presented me with Vegan Vice, I was immediately intrigued. Scrolling past, their burgers looked as delectable as any gourmet burger. The marketing of Vegan Vice is particularly interesting. There are sunsets and palm trees, festivals and fast food. The atmosphere is not based on being completely convenient, health conscious, or environmentally sound, but on enjoying fantastic food that almost coincidentally happens to be plant-based. Suddenly, you no longer have to compromise enjoyment when you choose to be ethically conscious. Satisfaction can be achieved through plant-based choices.

Following the easing of lockdown, Vegan Vice opened its doors in The Snug Bar at the Grafton. With relaxed indoor and outdoor seating, as well as the ability to order a cocktail to accompany your meal, it is the perfect place to wind down.

“Whilst I have no objection to a beetroot-based, quinoa, kale, superfood synthesis, sometimes it just won’t satisfy”

The menu centres around two key offerings: the Viceburger and the TenderCrop. The Viceburger is equivalent to a typical beef patty. Not being a fan of a beef burger, plant-based or otherwise, I was more enthusiastic about the TenderCrop. Whilst the veggie market is full of Beyond and Impossible patties, a chicken equivalent is not quite there, particularly a fried-style fillet. Vegan Vice describe the TenderCrop as ‘the trademark batter/spice blend preparation of seitan, a wheat-based protein that has a chick’n like texture and an impressive nutritional value’. The spice mix is a perfect balance of spicy, smoky and sweet. When overwhelmed by this fantastic taste, you don’t have time to notice that what you are eating is actually seitan; it’s scarily convincing, but without the meatiness that many find off-putting.

Whether you choose a TenderCrop or a Viceburger, the menu offers a range of combinations of burger fillings. Keen to try their purple slaw, I opted for the Spicy Tendercrop, which also came with the restaurant’s homemade buffalo sauce. With my fries, I ordered their PBQ sauce (peanut butter BBQ) and ketchup. The Vegan Vice sauces are singularly fantastic. They take every sauce you are used to and elevate it to a point that you cannot go back to basics again. Hopefully, they’ll eventually bottle their sauces and I will be able to enjoy them anytime.

“Vegan Vice are the best plant based eating experience I have ever had”

Overall, Vegan Vice offer the best plant-based eating experience I have ever had, and I have done extensive research and taste testing. The impressive flavours of every element of the meal, from the patties to the sauces, are outstanding. They contribute to an ever-growing scene of vegan restaurants that satisfy anyone, regardless of dietary requirements. There is a lot more to the menu that I am yet to try – milkshakes, bacon and cheese burgers, and a selection of wraps – but this just makes me even more excited to return. Vegan Vice will undoubtedly grow, so visit soon to say that you were among its first customers.


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