What: Pure Filth
In a nutshell: Healthy food that tastes anything but
Summing it all up: Gizzi Erskine and Rosemary Ferguson team up to take on the fast food giants with their vegetarian burger chain
2018's going to be a big year for Gizzi Erskine. Not only is she opening her first permanent restaurant at Mare Street Market, but she's also going to be taking on the fast food chains with Pure Filth.
Described as "a fresh new food concept delivering nutritiously decadent cuisine", Pure Filth popped up at Tate Britain in December, as the result of 18 months of research by Gizzi and partner-in-crime, nutritionist Rosemary Ferguson.
The pair met a festival, "We're both hedonistic," says Gizzi. "I've worked with lots of nutritionists before but she's the first I made a friend of."
Things really got moving when the two of them went for a detox. They spent a lot of time in the sauna, chatting and realising they both wanted the same thing - "nutrient dense food that was unexpected, but healthy. We're both passionate environmentalists," says Gizzi, "and knew the meat industry survives in part due to the fast food industry and burgers". They're after folk who are concientious eaters first rather than necessarily vegetarian or vegan.
So the pair came up with a menu that featured a veggie burger Gizzi could be proud of. "I didn't want it to be a bean burger or something too earthy, and the texture was really important." The resulting beetroot bun came with a black bean, black lentils, black quinoa and umami paste patty served with either beetroot ketchup/sticky BBQ sauce or Korean spicy tofu mayo. Also on the menu was The Big Double — two patties in a carrot bun, with American beer cheese — and a Korean burger featuring kimchi, pear Bulgogi sauce and American beer cheese. Sides were a choice of baked sweet potato fries, greens with lemon, parmesan and almonds or chicory and raddichio with radish, spring onion and mint.
The popup was a huge success. "The first 1000 tickets went in an hour, then we released another thousand and the same thing happened. We were doing 300 covers every lunchtime."
Unsurprisingly a lot of people reckon Pure Filth is worth investing it. "We're Looking at sites and talking to people now - we're probably talking about a summer opening. Our ambition is to take on the big guns and be a fast food chain." McDonalds and KFC - watch out!
More about Pure Filth
Where is it? TBC
When does it open? Summer 2018
Find out more: Follow Gizzi on Twitter @https://twitter.com/GizziErskine