Birmingham independent loved by celebs named among ‘best vegan restaurants in the UK’ Leave a comment

A Birmingham independent has been recognised as one of the top ten places for vegan food in the UK.

BA-HA was awarded the impressive accolade in the TripAdvisor Travelers’ Choice Awards.

The independent, which hosts kitchen residencies around the city, came tenth i n TripAdvisor ‘s “best UK vegan spots ” category.

Read more: 19 places to eat in Birmingham if you’re thinking of going vegan

Described as TripAdvisor’s ‘Best of the Best’, the awards are based on the number of highly-rated reviews left on the customer review site.

Recent reviews for BA-HA on TripAdvisor include: ” the best vegan food in Birmingham” and “five stars because 10 weren’t available.”

Cosmic Kitchen in Plymouth took the top spot for UK vegan dining.

BA-HA, helmed by Becky Powell and her fiancee Frankie Heekin, prides itself on “humane, plant-based food that changes with the season. Ingredients are always fresh and sourced locally.”

Since launching in 2017, BA-HA has amassed a loyal foodie following, including a few celebrity fans.

Famous BA-HA diners include Birmingham comedian Joe Lycett and celebrities from further afield, such as US singer Mya and Hollywood director Kevin Smith.

After his BA-HA visit, the director raved: ” BA-HA is one of the best vegan restaurants I’ve been to, and I have travelled a lot!”

Comedian Joe Lycett with BA-HA founders Becky Powell (centre) and Frankie Heekin (right)

Frankie told BirminghamLive: ” Kevin popped in for a meal when he was doing a show at the Symphony Hall in 2019 – he actually mentioned us when he was on stage!

“Mya asked us to cater for her when she was in concert in Birmingham in 2018, and Joe ate at BA-HA at Churchills quite a few times.”

Frankie and Becky are currently hunting for permanent BA-HA restaurant premises after the sad closure of its long-term home – Churchills bar in the Mailbox.

US singer Mya first right sitting next to Frankie along with her concert crew

Most recently BA-HA took over the kitchen a t Sobremesa in Digbeth and is now on a six-week residency at The Pineapple Club in Great Western Arcade.

Frankie explained: “Before Churchills, we were doing kitchen residency at bars all over the city. We were thrilled when Churchills offered us a very long-term contract to serve our food seven days a week, but due to the lockdowns, it closed permanently.

BA-HA at Churchills
BA-HA at Churchills before the site permanently closed

“Since then, we’ve returned to doing short-term kitchen takeovers as a way of surviving.

“We’re delighted to be able to cook our food on Monday nights at Pineapple Club, but we’d really love our own permanent base. “

Frankie and Becky, who both had some experience in hospitality, were inspired to launch BA-HA after turning vegan and discovering there “was a gap in the market for vibrant vegan food.”

BA-HA food has been raved about by Brummie vegans
BA-HA food has been raved about by Brummie vegans

BA-HA bestsellers include th e King Kentucky Burger – Kentucky fried King oyster mushroom in a crispy batter, homemade garlic mayo, mixed leaf, sriracha in a vegan brioche bun.

Another favourite is Bish and Chips – banana blossom marinated in sea kelp and lemon “to give you the taste of the sea,” coated in beer batter and served with seasoned chips, mint pea puree and lemon mayo.

The menu at Pineapple Club will change every week but will include dishes such as ‘lobster’ bisque ravioli with shaved radish, blossom and mico herb garnish, and spiced aubergine, mozzarella style melt smoked crisp with a basil dressing.

BA-HA will be at Pineapple Club every Monday evening until the end of August.

Becky and Frankie will also be serving their vegan treats at the Independent Birmingham festival on August 14-15.

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