Looking for vegan pizza in London? Purezza’s here to help.
Although not vegan, or even veggie, myself, I’m pretty open minded about what I eat. I’m of the mindset that good food is good food, regardless of whether it’s for those with carnivorous intentions or plant-based eaters. I’m also pretty keen on the idea of lessening my own meat and animal product intake, even if they are still part of my diet. Because if we all did that, even just a little, it might make a big impact.
One of the areas of diet that plant-based friends have always struggled with, though, is finding choice when eating out. Vegetarian options on menus are pretty standard, yet vegan options much less so – even with a huge surge in popularity over the past few years. Which is probably one of the reasons why we’re seeing the emergence of more completely vegetarian and vegan restaurants in London.
Purezza is one of said establishments; serving up a fully vegan pizza menu. With its original restaurant in Brighton, Purezza’s London branch opened earlier this year. I met up with some of the girls to check it out.
The menu is pretty extensive – with four starters, ten standard pizza options, one calzone, a raw gluten free pizza three sides including mac and cheese, lasagne and a salad dish. The drinks menu is well stacked too – I chose a Hepworth Blond Gluten Free Beer (because gluten free lagers are EXCELLENT at banishing beer bloat), which was light and enjoyable.
I did have a slight hiccup with the food menu – in that there were quite a lot of pizzas ruled out by a few ingredients I don’t much like. Namely, mushrooms, beetroot and aubergines. Luckily, the Pesto Manifesto read like a list of things I enjoy – red onions, courgettes, pine nuts, spinach leaves and cherry tomatoes, and finished with freshly blended pesto.
Basically, if you REALLY like pesto (I do), this is the pizza for you. Because that’s the main taste you get. Purezza’s pesto is pretty magical though, so that’s okay – even though actually, a tiny bit less pesto might have let the other, more subtle, flavours escape a little more. Like the courgette – something I wouldn’t think to put on pizza, but really worked, and the cherry tomatoes. I also had no real experience of the vegan mozzarella’s taste, as it was very subtle in comparison to the pesto.
But…I REALLY LIKED the pesto.
Purezza’s sourdough pizza base is also one of the best bases I’ve had at any pizza restaurant. Thin in the centre with a good amount of puff around the outside, it easily outshines other stars of sourdough in the city.
I also had a slice of Charlie’s Couch Potato pizza. I didn’t rate it, and neither did she, although apparently they’d left the sauce off, which made it really dry and not enjoyable. The gluten free base also wasn’t to my taste. The Calzone, though, was pretty good indeed – although perhaps a little lacking in filling amount, I enojoyed the taste from the caramelised onion, vegan ricotta, chickpeas and spinach that it contained. And I also got to try seitan for the first time – FWIW? I’m a fan.
Purezza’s vegan pizza was definitely different to my usual pizza tastes. But my Pesto Manifesto was a genuinely enjoyable treat by anyone’s standards, and I’d quite happily go to Purezza again. Having the option to go to restaurants with vegan friends where the menu is all about THEIR tastes for a change, and finding some food you really enjoy, is a wonderful thing. And for pizza lovers of all diet persuasions, Purezza does enjoyable food pretty well.
43 Parkway, Camden Town, NW1 7PN