Innocent’s brilliant idea

Working in PR for food brands, one of the lines I hear the most is: we want to be like innocent. Kind of a no brainer as innocent is a brand with a great reputation and spot-on marketing. And ladies and gents, they have done it again with their “pop up” 5for5 innocent cafe in Shoreditch. The concept of the cafe is to make eating “good stuff” i.e. fruits and veg easy, tasty and enjoyable, and very good value for only £5 per person. I think somewhere in there, there was also a promise of eating 5 of your ’5 of a day.’

The cafe has popped up in The Tamshed which was built around 1907 and has been used in the past as a furniture warehouse and an art gallery. Now that innocent have taken it over with its 7-day 5for5 cafe, it is a little bit like an outdoor porch (or patio as we say in America) with wood tables, greenery every where, red serviettes and an open-plan kitchen so you can watch the chefs prepare the food.

All for £5, innocent have managed to get help from guest chef Gizzi Erskine, provide locally and ethically sourced fruit and veg and a very relaxed and delicious dining experience. We booked ahead of time on the 5for5 website and walked a few minutes from our office for lunch today. The starters were my favourite and we decided to pass up the puds to order one of each – including a black bean hummus on sourdough toast with avocado, tomato and seeds and a spiced, roasted root vegetable salad with pickled walnuts and goat’s curd. The black bean hummus with seeds was amazing and luckily they have provided me with a recipe card so I can make my own at home.

On to the mains, we chose the tikka marinated halloumi with sweet potato gobi curry and a sweet potato brik – this was deep fried and I could have done without it to be honest – with a very healthy roasted pepper, courgette and chickpea salad. We shared both and ate every last bite. And as for my ’5 a day,’ thanks to a pomegranate, blueberry and acai smoothie, I think I’m already at about 6!

Unfortunately the cafe is all booked up, but innocent is releasing 10 tickets every day at 9 am on their website, so if you’re lucky you might get a chance to enjoy it! If you’re not lucky enough to get a spot at the cafe but you work around East London, head to the innocent pop-up takeaway hatch around the corner where you can get an innocent veg pot and a smoothie (that’s already 5 of your 5 a day!), and lots of other goodies like teas, dried fruit and a muffin for only £5.

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