inSpiral's flagship eatery, The inSpiral Lounge, is located in the heart of the Camden Lock area of London and is a welcome haven for the awkward eater. In the first of a series of field reports, members of the awkwardeaters.com team were invited to sample and review their award nominated 'Visionary Raw' dessert range which is currently vying for 'Best Raw Product' at VegFestUK.
We were welcomed by the very hospitable Amy and Ellie who offered us a variety of hot beverages available with a multitude of dairy free milk alternatives (although Organic dairy milk is in store too). I was treated to an oat-milk Latte while Nancy opted for a Soya Chai Tea. We were introduced to the 'Visionary Raw' range - eight interesting (and some unusual) flavours of raw, frozen dessert that in inSpiral's own words claim to be "better than ice cream". All the desserts boast the following:
- 100% natural
- dairy free
- soya free
- gluten free
- low G.I. sugar
- that they do contain nuts (except the Mangogoji Sorbet which is nut free, although there are no guarantees of traces)
We chose four flavours to sample: Chocolate Chunk, Lucuma Maple Pecan, Dandelion Coffee Amaretto and Lavender Purple Corn. All eight varieties can additionally be turned into a luxurious milkshake (with any dairy-free milk in store) and we decided to have the Chocolate Chunk done in this way with a rice milk alternative.
In the taste test the desserts get our vote unquestioningly and we thoroughly enjoyed the indulgence. The flavours are bold and rich and certainly pack a punch. All of them have a similar pleasant, nutty aftertaste which we can assume is from the raw cashew nut base. My personal favourite was the Lucuma Maple Pecan which had great balance of being sweet, but not sickly. I think the Lavender Purple Corn is likely to divide opinion as it did with Nancy and I, but for those with an acquired taste for subtle floral flavours it will be a treat. The Chocolate Chunk best resembled traditional dairy ice-cream in terms of texture, but we found that all of the desserts benefitted from a little thawing to maximise their consistency.
The star of the show though was undoubtedly the Chocolate Chunk (rice) milkshake. This was thick, creamy and as a cow's milk drinker, I would not have known that this was dairy free in a blind test. If we had not been so full at this point we would certainly have tried the other flavours in milkshake form.
The 'Visionary Raw' dessert pots are priced at £2.75 each (though if you buy four you get a fifth free!) and when you consider that they are primarily made from organic and Fairtrade ingredients we feel that this is genuinely well priced in a market full of overpriced 'alternative' dessert products. They tick the health box too being rich in protein, low in sugar and containing 'super foods' and all natural fruit extracts.
Due to the frozen nature of the product it is currently only available in the inSpiral Lounge, but we would highly recommend a visit to this delightful venue that has views overlooking Camden Lock and a warm, friendly environment. Additionally they have a vast range of other raw food and 'free-from' products, all of which are made onsite in the inSpiral kitchen and many of which are available to buy on their website.
If you feel inspired by inSpiral's raw, frozen desserts, but are unable to make it to Camden Lock anytime soon, you can now recreate them in the comfort of your own home. inSpiral have kindly shared their recipe for the Mulberry buterscotch with pecan flavour which you can view here:
The 'Visionary Raw' range has been nominated for the 'Best Raw Product Award' at VegfestUK and if you like what you taste then please do head over and vote for them here: http://london.vegfest.co.uk/vote
inSpiral specialises in gourmet optimum nutrition for connoisseurs, all freshly handmade onsite and served from our vibrant counter.
Many of our dishes are suitable for those with special diets, for example wheat, gluten, or sugar-free, and everything is suitable for vegans - containing no eggs or dairy and therefore everything is naturallycholesterol-free. Surprisingly though, we find our food to be particularly popular with health & fitness enthusiasts, families and those on conventional diets who simply wish to avoid unhealthy additives, preservatives, MSG, and find more delicious ways to eat healthily...
All our food is made freshly onsite in our inSpiral kitchen, with many of ingredients being local and organic.
Conceived by our Executive Chef Enzo Marino our menu goes with the flow of the changing seasons and aims for a rich and varied palette of textures and tastes, balanced within nutritional principles.
Dishes are enhanced with superfoods, tonic herbs and where possible we use more life enhancing techniques of food preparation: prefering dehydrating to baking, baking to frying, frying in coconut oil rather than in other unstable oils, etc. We always consider the whole effect of our dishes - not simply the taste, but also the benefits to the mind and body, and also to the environment.
By Laurie Bescheerer Hayes | 15th August 2013