by Chloe Walden - Tuesday February 14, 2017 10:02 am
42 Drury Lane, Covent Garden, London, WC2B 5AJ
Chloe finds some dishes decent but overall doesn't quite buy the farm.
With an entirely gluten, dairy and refined sugar-free menu, Farmstand is the latest ‘casual fast food’ café offering sustainably sourced and healthy breakfasts, lunches and dinners in the heart of Covent Garden.
The inspiration behind Farmstand comes from roadside stalls from the American Midwest where everything you can buy is home-grown, local and seasonal. Following this ethos all the food available at Farmstand is cooked in-house and made with British produce where possible.
When you walk into Farmstand it feels healthy. Plants grow up the exposed brick walls, there’s white woodwork and sparkling and still water taps with glasses piled up next to them in a help yourself style – everything about this place oozes clean living.
You then notice the counter at the back on the café which has an industrial hot plate filled with lots of different food combinations. For lunch or dinner, you can either build your own box (the standard option is one option and two sides) or grab a ready-to-go box. As we weren’t in too much of a rush we decided to try two of the make your own options.
Out of all the hot main options, the slow cooked beef brisket looked the most appealing on a cold winter day served with tahini and sesame seed topped broccoli and carrots. The beef was well done and fell apart in the way a good beef brisket should.
It also packed a real garlic punch, which could be slightly overpowering for some, but for me was tasty. However, the carrots had an odd back taste that was quite bitter and unpleasant while the broccoli was undercooked and hard.
The second main was lamb meatballs in a smoked paprika and tomato sauce, with buckwheat tabbouleh, fennel, cucumber and pickled lemon, and roasted sweet potatoes with ginger and coconut yoghurt.
The meatballs had a nice flavour, but after the mound of beef brisket only beingserved two fairly small meatballs was slightly disappointing. The sweet potatoes were nice but a tad bland, and the tabbouleh average and nothing to get too excited about.
As well as the savoury options, Farmstand also has a selection of freshly baked goodies, and on the day we visited they had coconut blondies. I was surprised by how much grease came out of the blondie onto the paper bag, but flavour overall was nice and the coconut came through well.
I didn’t dislike Farmstand, but it didn’t make me fall in love with its food offering. If I worked nearby I probably would go for a nice treat lunch as the options are healthy enough not to make me feel guilty, a step up from your standard chain sandwich or salad, but at the slightly higher end of the lunch price scale if you chose a build your own box – a good destination for a working lunch with friends or colleagues.