Restaurant Review: Zilli Green, London

Two vegans, one vegetarian and one non-veg ate at Zilli Green in London’s Soho last night. They universally acclaimed the dinner as outstanding. The style of cuisine is “Italian vegetarian with a fusion mind from across the world.”

For appetisers, T had the Peppers, Courgette Aubergine & Parmesan Terrine with a Watercress Pesto Dressing. It was presented very well but had a surprisingly mild flavour. (Zilli Green ensures the cheeses they use are vegetarian and do not include animal rennet.) G greatly enjoyed the Mixed Vegetable Tempura. It wasn’t oily as it is so often cooked. It was also presented very well and greatly admired by everyone. J and K had the soup of the day. This was a delicious creamy base of beetroot, coconut and sage with a splash of balsamic vinegar. Both said it was delicious. The beautiful deep red colour striking. All felt the soup was the best appetiser.

Selecting dishes for the main course was challenging as the choice is outstanding. After much deliberation and discussion, T had the Ricotta, Artichoke & Truffle Ravioli with Butter & Sage Sauce; J picked the Tofu Sausage with Spring Onion Mash, Mushroom Gravy & Mushy Peas; G opted for the Lightly Smoked Tofu Cake with Tarragon, Skin-on Potatoes, Mixed Greens & Sardinian Bread; and K went for three vegetable dishes, which were Rosemary Roast Potatoes – Skin On, Mixed Greens and Chargrilled Mediterranean Vegetables in Cider Vinegar & Mint Dressing.

Generally, everyone agreed the dishes were creatively presented and pleasing to taste. The ravioli was delicious, said T, who admitted to “inhaling it.” J, an American visiting London who wanted a traditional meal, thought the tofu sausages and mushy peas were “good enough that a bloke from Newcastle wouldn’t know the difference”! G said the lightly smoked tofu was a satisfying combination of mild flavours. And K snaffled down the three vegetable dishes and confessed to looking forward to a return visit when he could try more.

We picked a Maris Syrah vegan, organic and biodynamic French red wine. J thought it had an “excellent bouquet, very smooth with a little bit of fun at the end — a peppery finish.” K would have preferred it to be a bit drier but G and T disagreed. We all thought, however, the Maris was a good choice which complemented well our various choices.

The desserts at Zilli Green did not disappoint. Indeed, they ensured our dinner was totally enjoyable. T had a Selection of Homemade Italian Ice Cream which, she said, was vanilla and almond flavoured and were “Delicious!” J picked the Creme Brulee with Passion Fruit, which he described as a very hot custard with a caramelised top. G and K shared the Organic Tofu & Limoncello Cheesecake and the Dairy Free Tiramisu. All were worth going to Zilli Green alone!

The service was excellent, including a very attentive and caring Maitre d. Head chef, Enzo di Marino, and Award winning Italian chef and restaurateur, Aldo Zilli, are to be congratulated on producing an outstanding restaurant. The meal was as good if not better than some of the best veg/vegan restaurants that we have enjoyed in such American cities as New York, Los Angeles and San Francisco.