The Omni Collective -Peckham’s Iconic Plant-Based Restaurant.
Veganuary is an annual challenge inspiring people to go vegan for the month of January. It began in 2014 and has grown rapidly since then.
More than 700,000 people worldwide signed up for Veganuary 2023, breaking all previous records. For many years before this, vegans and vegetarians were not well served in restaurants, apart from the odd token dish on the menu. Today, a meat-free diet is no longer considered an inconvenient dietary choice or a lifestyle that isn’t worth catering for, with supermarket giants such as Sainsbury’s predicting that 25% of the UK population will be plant-based by 2025.
Offering an exclusively plant-based menu, The Omni Collective has laid its roots in Peckham, after years of operating as a pop-up. Their concept? Vegetable-forward food focussed on seasonal vegetables, as opposed to fake meats and vegan junk food that the market has been saturated with.
As a ‘micro-seasonal’ restaurant, their plant-based menu changes every 3-4 weeks depending on what is available, and they use flavours and inspiration from around the world to create new and interesting combinations. Winter menu items include roasted Delica squash in a charred grape vinaigrette with activated almond, ginger and chilli hand-pulled noodles, garlic sesame cimi da rapa, oyster mushrooms in shio koji and sumac togarashi and kale ‘seaweed’ in jalapeno aioli.
What’s more, all the dishes are designed to be shared and you can opt in for the ‘Set Menu’ options at £40 per head, with pickles and focaccia included. As well as this, they offer an extensive cocktail menu, with delightful flavours of Rhubarb & Custard, Blood Orange Negroni, Charred Lemon Margaritas, Pomelo Daquiris and more. All drinking vinegar and kombuchas are made in-house, and any leftover vegetables are pickled or fermented with a view to remaining as sustainable as possible. To add to this, there is a great natural wine list and locally sourced beers available.
“To many, Omni means omnivore, those who eat everything from meat to fish to vegetables. Naming our plant-based restaurant The Omni Collective was rooted in the idea that people of all beliefs and nationalities could be brought together, and sit around the table as we did. For us, Omni is about feeding everyone from one menu, whether you are kosher, halal, omnivorous or plant-based.
My partner and co-founder, George Matheou, didn’t always used to be vegan. I started as a pescatarian and George as an omnivore. In fact, we first started our pop-up with a pescatarian menu before realising it is hard to find sustainable fish with the budget restrictions we had. We decided that if we couldn’t do it right then we wouldn’t do it at all. After participating in a 40-day vegan challenge, we decided there was nothing to be missed in terms of flavour and food choices. The only thing we were missing was our perfect date night setting. Our backgrounds as chefs allowed us to experiment with flavours, and gain feedback from customers and décor inspiration to create the restaurant we had always dreamt of.
Introducing ‘The Omni Collective’ – a fully plant-based restaurant favouring vibrant veggies over fake meat. We hope to welcome everyone either for a beautiful brunch setting at 11:30 am-3 pm, or our ambient dinner service from 5 pm-10 pm. We can cater to any cuisine or dietary requirements. We are also available to hire for private events, from weddings, parties, retreats, or work events.”