Sat Bains says vegan tasting menus are a rip-off

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 18th January 2020

While many in the world of food and drink are reeling customers in with their veganuary specials, one chef will not be joining the plant-based celebrations. 

In an interview with Nottinghamshire Live, two Michelin-starred chef Sat Bains explained that for him, so much thought and consideration goes into creating his ten-course tasting menus that the prospect of devising an entirely plant-based one is just a step too far. 

Although Sat gladly works around food intolerances and allergies where possible, and will cater for vegetarians and pescatarians, he believes that vegan food is within the realms of speciality cuisines. 

His tasting menu, he said, "isn't just ten dishes thrown on a menu - it's thought about so much in minute detail. We want to give our customers the best food we can.

"We are not specialists in vegan food and I never set out to be a vegan restaurant.

"The customers coming here know what to expect. We're niche - we can be niche with our menu in terms of ingredients so there are certain dietaries we can't do and won't do. I can't go to a vegan restaurant and ask for steak."

"You can't go to a heavy metal concert and expect classical music. It's my business and my business model to do what I want. I don't do vegan, halal or kosher."

The chef cited another example of an allergy he had his team had found nearby impossible to cater for, which was deadly nightshade vegetables - which include potatoes, tomatoes and aubergines - saying it was "so hard to get right." 

"We were no longer doing our food. We were putting up dishes to meet this person's needs and almost forsaking our own style."

Not known for mincing his words, the chef said that to his mind, vegan food is "the biggest rip off," and that he could in no way justify charging £120 for a plant-based tasting menu.  

He added: "The ingredients are so cheap. I want to give people value for money."

What are your thoughts chefs? Should chefs like Sat Bains go the extra mile to cater for vegan customers? Is vegan food a rip off? Discuss in the comments below!

The  Staff Canteen

The Staff Canteen

Editor 18th January 2020

Sat Bains says vegan tasting menus are a rip-off