Please remove your shoes’, reads the sign at the door of Primrose Hill’s triyoga centre (which you find at the end of an obscure mews). It brought to mind an oriental temple, and just entering made your reviewer feel slightly virtuous. It also made me feel very out-of-shape. It was all to do with the willowy, toned figures flitting in and out. And that was just the men.
A small foyer doubles as an area for lounging about, and as the venue for The Little Earth cafe. A water feature gently bubbles in the corner. The expansive coffee tables are awash with programmes and products for a healthier spirit and body.
And if you want to detox, you won’t do much better than the ‘meat-free, wheat-free, gluten-free, dairy-free, sugar-free and of course totally organic’ fare promised here at the UK’s first Raw Food café.
The vitality of the dishes is striking. ‘Pink Sushi’ in particular packed a delicious punch: alfalfa sprouts and other vegetal matter, wrapped in a sheet of green nori seaweed and then smeared with a garish pinky/purple slush made of oils and pureed veg. Zing! Other star turns were the veggie-juices and rice-milk shakes, with a respectable last place being awarded to the interesting-but-not-earthshattering veggie burger.
Raw Food originated in California about ten years ago, founded in part on the belief that for maximum benefit your body needs the enzymes in food that are otherwise broken down in the cooking process. It smacks of pseudo-science and it probably is. But who cares because if you want ‘crunchy’, this is the Real McCoy. At the very least, you’ll probably leave having consumed each and every one of your ‘five a day’.