Wednesday 12 August 2015

Rainbow Cafe - Cambridge

A little while ago I listed on my '20 Things To Do Before 2016' blog post that I really wanted to make a visit to the veggie and vegan friendly Rainbow Cafe in Cambridge. One of my good friends Kelly, who happens to live in Cambridge, saw this post and suggested that we both made a date of it which brought a big smile to my face as, not only did it make it perfect sense, but it's also just super nice when your non vegan friends show an interest and are happy to eat plant based with you! We also invited our other friend Katie who is currently on maternity leave and had never visited Cambridge before so it was the perfect opportunity for her to see the City and catch up with us. 

The Rainbow Cafe is set back from the main road and you have to venture down a little alley way to reach the front entrance. There's plenty of signage outside to indicate where the cafe is however I don't think I would have found it if I wasn't directly looking for it. This could perhaps be why I have never stumbled across it before on my days out to Cambridge. When I first read about the cafe I had no idea that it even existed and with Cambridge not being too far away from me I was eager to get myself there to check it out. 

My friend Katie had bought her new baby along with her and none of us knew that the cafe is in fact below ground level so it proved a little tricky navigating a buggy down two flights of stairs! But once we made it down we were pleasantly surprised by what a charming little place this is. It happened to be a pretty hot and sunny day that we visited and it was actually quite pleasant going down to the coolness of this underground setting.

I really liked the quirky and homely interior of the cafe which is full of welcomimg character. It's a very comfortable and chilled out setting for any lunch or dinner date. Dotted around are numerous little decorative references to the cafe's name which add bursts of colour and vibrancy to the walls.  There's also something about the general ambience of the Rainbow which makes you feel like you could be anywhere in the world and I love that! 

I was impressed to see that the Rainbow Cafe is a Vegetarian Society award winner along with a number of other accolades listed on the front of the menu. This got me excited to try the food and helped me to feel more at ease that i'd bought my friends to somewhere decent to eat! I admit I felt some level of pressure taking my meat eating friends to an all veggie restaurant and I really wanted them to have an enjoyable experience.

The menu and accompanying specials list were vast and the choices endless with both vegetarians and vegans being catered for and gluten free options available. I would say that the menu is more geared towards vegetarians than vegans but there were still a good few options to choose from and it all sounded delicious. The dishes on offer encompassed a variety of different cultures cuisines with everything from Italian, Latvian, Jamaican, Mexican and English. There really is something for everyone!

I decided to go with the vegan friendly garlic bread with accompanying sun dried chilli for my starter. I absolutely love garlic bread and often find this is something I can no longer have due to the garlic butter so it was amazing to see this option on the menu. When it arrived it was the perfect size for one and tasted so good! I could have happily have munched away on this all day and the starter alone is enough to get me back to the Rainbow again.

For my main I opted for the vegan Tacos which were stuffed with a spicy bean chill and came with rice and salad. I love Mexican style dishes and this proved to be a great choice for me and my friend Kelly. The whole dish just felt like it was full of homemade goodness.  It was really enjoyable and the portion size was also really good making it a great value lunch.

As with most of my restaurant reviews, I was unfortunately too stuffed to go in for any desserts but it's worth me mentioning that they looked very inviting and vegan options were also available including one of my all time faves - Swedish Glace ice cream! If I had been more hungry I would have had to have tried the vegan cheesecake as I am yet to experience one and it sounded divine.

I'm so happy to have finally made it to the Rainbow and it was great to experience it with my carnivore friends who also really enjoyed their lunches. I can highly recommend a day out to Cambridge, it's a wonderful vibrant City with so much to see and do and, now I know what the Rainbow has to offer, I'm going to keep coming back!  


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