When Sinead had first contacted Love Brighton about places to go, people to see and libations to swig, one place kept getting mentioned over and over again.
Silo. The UK's first zero-waste restaurant. Now I have eaten at sustainable restaurants, nearly-zero waste restaurants, foraging restaurants and other variants on this theme, but never at somewhere that proclaims to be completely zero waste. Just pause and try to get your head around that for a moment. You can't purchase flour - you need to mill it yourself if you want people to eat bread. Every last scrap of food waste needs to be composted. Booze needs to be brewed on site. All the building materials need to be recycled. All produce, every last scrap needs to be locally sourced or come into the UK via sustainable methods. The sheer scale of this endeavor is, quite frankly, terrifying.
Douglas McMaster has launched himself into with a passion and fervor that is astounding. You would have to be passionate in order to commit to something as absolute as zero-waste. Passionate, or absolutely bonkers. Silo in Brighton is not Douglas' first foray into the world of zero-waste. A prototype of his vision was launched extremely successfully in Melbourne with the Artist / Designer Joost Bakker.
The Guardian, McMaster said that “Choice is something which is wrong with the food industry. The places
with more choice create more waste and have lower standards, that’s an
The menu is presented to you on a tablet or projected onto the wall. This causes some issues when the projector inexplicably cuts out and a different menu from the day before appears, but for the most part it is a simple, obvious system that reduces paper wastage.
I needn't have worried myself. I ordered the catchbox fish dish, which on this day happened to be some unfortunate cod that had swum into the nets, with greens and a light butter dressing. It was divine, and I do not say this lightly. It was served with seaweed mash, steamed leeks and capers. I actually had to ask what one of the ingredients was as I had never heard of it before. Turns out it is a cousin to broccoli (which I detest, but in this dish was wolfed down). The flavour combinations were subtle and delicate, and, (to quote a phrase I am not particular fond of as it is ridiculously hipster, but in this situation it absolutely applies), the entire dish left you feeling clean afterwards. Every single element on the plate had a purpose and it just came together in a medley of magnificence.
In addition to the restaurant is the bakery where we pick up cakes for the train ride home later that day.
trying to raise funds to improve areas that aren't quite zero waste yet, such as sourcing ingredients that are difficult to get in the UK and improving the coffee system
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