The Sandbar Restaurant on the Broadway in Leigh on Sea

There’s not a huge list of vegan restaurants in Leigh and this was my first visit to the Sandbar. While there is, of course, the wonderful Oak Tree Market, which I do visit fairly regularly, other than that it’s a little sparse for vegan food.

Leigh on Sea is big on seafood, the clue is in the name. As a result, there’s far more seafood restaurants than vegan restaurants. And we’re in Essex. All these factors contribute to a meaty menu in most places.

Seafood Restaurant keeping this vegan happy - empty plate!
Vegan at a Seafood restaurant

This was exemplified by the experience in the Estuary restaurant on the Broadway. When enquiring what they had for vegans, the lady exclaimed “Oh you poor thing”. She didn’t realise the vegan curse with which I was afflicted was self prescribed…

Anyway, the food was below average, if I’m kind. Enough said…

The Sandbar is NOT a vegan restaurant but…

A completely different story at the Sandbar though. The staff were very helpful, the chef was able to go off piste and the vegan food she produced was brilliant. There it’s not that hard is it!

I spoke to Louise afterwards and she said that everything is made separately and so it’s easy for her to accommodate me. She, personally, doesn’t eat meat and so has an idea of how to cook with vegetables. I find that a lot of chefs don’t.

So what can a vegan eat at a seafood restaurant?

Well for starters I had a a salad. In many places this will be a slung together cucumber based lame effort. I’ve had a green salad plus black olives for my Sunday Lunch before.

Not at the Sandbar. No sireebob. This was a salad of flavours. Different ones on a plate. It was pearl barley based with loads of good guys added. The highlights were sweet beetroot, amazing, and prunes, amazing too. I’d never think of adding these to pearl barley. Brilliant.

Sandbar Pearl Barley Salad

That’s the test for me. I want to be eating something I don’t or even better, can’t make at home. This passed the don’t test at the very least! This was brilliant and a large plateful too. Another plus. The after photo says it all…

Seafood Restaurant keeping this vegan happy - empty plate!

The only bit left is the tiny piece of beetroot. This was because I wanted to ask the waitress what it was. This tiny piece of flavour explosion had me puzzled!

I do tend to eat my dinner, all of it. But this was very goo. So onto the main course…

After a great start, could it compare?

Yep. Passed with flying colours.

I had a lentil and potato stew. This was lovely and hearty; brown lentils are. It was nice and spicy too. There were lots of peas and an interesting use of finely chopped spring onions. Worked very well indeed. I’m a fan.

Lentil and potato stew

The verdict…

The Sandbar restaurant caters for vegans, very well. They don’t make you feel like a nuisance and the chef can cope. Well, more than cope. If you’re in Leigh and in need of some great vegan food give it a go… Five stars! Here’s my Google review


2 thoughts on “The Sandbar Restaurant on the Broadway in Leigh on Sea”

  1. Thanks, I did. I also had positive experiences in London this weekend. There’s tons of veggie restaurants to choose from!

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