It’s really great to see more and more London restaurants offering vegan menus. I was lucky to try Tendril Restaurant a few weeks ago – so I can see the vegan movement really taking off finally. Is it because people eat these days more environmentally consciously? Or is it because people want to eat healthier and cut out meat and dairy? Maybe, even if not entirely, but on a flexitarian way – it’s still better for us, the planet, the animals and our wallet too! There are many reasons to eat less meat, go vegetarian or vegan. Luckily nowadays there are so many options to cook and eat delicious plant based food. I’m very glad to see restaurants are also offering full vegan menus as well.
As November was World Vegan Month, the last day of November was fitting to end the month with a restaurant outing. We were invited to check out Sticky Mango: the new flagship venue in Tower Bridge opened in August 2023 headed by Chef Patron Peter Lloyd.
About Sticky Mango
With wonderful views to the river Thames (they also have a cosy terrace with heaters) one of the three Sticky Mango venues, Sticky Mango Tower Bridge is definitely the shiniest jewel in the Pan Asian Sticky Mango collection. They have two other restaurants in Islington and in Waterloo. The concept of Chef Lloyd was to bring the South East Asian food markets flavours to London but with contemporary twist. All the flavours are inspired by Chef Lloyd’s extensive travels throughout Vietnam, Thailand, Singapore, Indonesia and Malaysia. The food designed to awaken the senses and satisfy more than just you tastebuds: they are very pretty and fragrant too. With vibrant and colourful interior Sticky Mango is also available for private hires (seated group and standing receptions). We also had a DJ that evening – the music was distracting and were chill mixes.
What I thought about it
I naturally chose the Vegan Menu, whilst husband chose the Festive Menu. The menu is impressive and a very good value for the money and the location at £40 per person – drinks excluded. We had a cocktail to start with (a Bellini variation for me) and a bottle of mid-tier Sauvignon Blanc.
Thai Green Papaya Salad / Edamame Beans with Malson Sea Salt
The starters were not my favourites: the salad I found too spicy to taste any other flavours in this pretty dish (luckily we shared one bowl between the two of us) and the Edamame beans were too salty (I love salt, don’t get me wrong, it was just a little too overwhelming for me).
3/5 for me
Popiah Vegetable Roll
Fresh and crunchy: thinnest thin julienned fresh carrots, shallots and cucumber with hoisin and soy sauce. Loved every bit of this one, however, I think half the size would have been enough and some extra dipping sauce – because it was delicious!
Vegetable Pad Thai with Wok Tenderstem Broccoli
Oh these were absolutely gorgeous both! The Pad Thai was so flavoursome and the broccoli was a match made in heaven with the shiitake mushrooms and water chestnuts. Super tasty. They were also decent portions! At this point I was already quite full with food and the flavours too.
Thai Spiced Cauliflower with Padian Jasmine Rice
Really lovely green curry dish: who knew the cauliflower with silky green curry makes such a good combination? It was very good indeed and again: beautifully presented. Although, this dish was a smaller size compared to the vegetable pad thai – it was a struggle for me to finish it at this point. But couldn’t possible waste this lovely dish! My only suggestion with this one is to use less coconut cream, I found that a little too thick at the bottom of the serving dish – so I didn’t scrape that out after finishing the cauliflower with the top layer of the curry sauce.
The namesake desert was absolutely phenomenal. I’m not really a dessert person – I normally skip desserts, but it was on the menu, so I was never going to not eat it. And what a dessert. It’s not overly sweet, but a layer of sweet and fruity textures – just wonderful. It was served by our waiter by pouring the slightly sweetened vanilla-coconut cream over the white whipped coconut cream which melted and revealed the mango sorbet.
Delivered perfectly what it said on the menu – a lovely combination of grilled pineapple with crispy chilli-peanuts and mango sorbet. Perfect!
Bonus – Warm Spiced Ginger Sponge Pudding with Thai Tea Ice Cream
This was on husband’s festive menu but tasted this one as well and it was a delicious fusion dessert!
We arrived at 6pm and at that time we were the only ones in the restaurant but it slowly filled up by 7-8pm and all tables were taken. We had a DJ playing soft chill house type of music which really complemented the atmosphere. The decor is strong, bold and bright coloured with hot pinks, turquoise and blacks. Super uplifting, especially with the Christmas decor they also had up. The views are really lovely from the restaurant: the lights of the city and the magnificent Tower Bridge makes a prime location.
The staff is very friendly, skilled and polite. The service is smooth and laid back: never had to wait more than a few minutes for anything.
It’s a cool in style but it’s warm and welcoming place and the food was excellent – great value too, lots of food for the money. I’d definitely go back and would also try the other two restaurants.