“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” – Hippocrates.
This is the motto of Farmacy, the famous vegan restaurant in London, owned by Camilla Al-Fayed, daughter of former Harrods owner Mohamed Al-Fayed and a sister of Dodi Al-Fayed. When I and my friend decide to try the food there, we are surprised to find out that the venue doesn’t accept bookings. When we end up in front of the beautiful restaurant in Notting Hill, we are kindly informed by the receptionist that we can have a walk around the area for 1-2 hours, because there is a huge waiting list. We have taken the task to have a proper healthy vegan meal very seriously and we decide that we will do whatever it takes in order to have a vegan burger or a plant-based ice cream sundae.
Finally we manage to get a table. Everyone around us looks very ‘vegan’ and I am thinking that I should have avoided wearing a fur coat and leather boots at this place. However, I shouldn’t worry, because the visitors don’t pay any attention. They are busy to look for celebrities since this place is a favourite restaurant of many top actors, singers and TV stars.
We are advised that the specialty of the restaurant is the ‘earth bowls’ and since I am on a gluten free diet, this seems like the perfect choice. I order a superfood smoothie and Middle East Bowl, which contains steamed buckwheat served with baba ganoush, spirulina hummus, sprouted tabbouleh, sweet potato falafels and pickled beetroot topped with sprouts and zatar crackers. When my meal arrives, I admit to myself that it is definitely not very appealing. However, I decide to give it a go and I am surprised to find out that the spirulina hummus is actually quite tasty. The meal is huge and very filling and although I can barely breathe, I decide to try the Berry mess – a delicious combination of berry cream, maple meringue, coconut (n)ice-cream and almonds. Again it tastes much better than it looks, I am so inspired that I decide that I should stop eating dairy and meat for at least some period of time.
It’s time to leave the restaurant, when I see a familiar face at a nearby table. I stare at a beautiful woman, I feel like we’ve met before. She smiles at me and I realise that this is Madonna! Lost for words, I just manage to say something like ‘Oh my God’. I and my friend stand mesmerized in front of her and we feel like she is someone who we know in person – we have seen her so many times on TV. She looks amazing, even more beautiful than on pictures. She’s having dinner with her son, but of course all eyes are on her. We just can’t stop staring and she looks at us too. I almost feel like saying hi, but she seems so charming and dignified that we just leave the restaurant without saying a word.
Farmacy turns out to be a real celebrity spot – I wonder who I will meet next time when I go there. I hope it will be Madonna again, and this time I will definitely say something!