blog post two | WW UK
Weight Watchers Official Eating Officer
28/10/2016 : Sophie & The Amazing
Technicolour Restaurant – Grain Store Kings Cross
Hi all! Well, what better way to start my Official Eating Officer duties than with a trip to the Big Smoke? I tend to visit London a lot for work and only manage to grab a quick sandwich or salad on the go, so it was a lovely, refreshing change to actually sit and enjoy a leisurely meal.
The restaurant of choice was The Grain Store, King’s Cross. Just five minutes from King’s Cross station and in the trendy Granary Square; it’s one of those effortlessly cool restaurants that oozes style and sophistication without being too stuffy or formal.
The bar stretches the length of the restaurant and faces onto the huge open kitchen where you can watch the team hard at work on their culinary delights! A perfect choice for a ‘ladies who lunch’ type of meal.
I’d scoped the restaurant and the menu out beforehand online which is a failsafe trick to keep on plan, making sensible choices and helping you guesstimate your SmartPoints (SP). The restaurant prides itself on giving vegetables their fair share of attention and this was obvious as I scanned the menu and admired the number of vibrant veggie-based dishes gracing the menu.
My heart was originally set on the Pumpkin Ravioli, but the specials board threw me a culinary curveball and instead, I opted for the Roasted Sea Bass with Carrot Pureé and Sautéed Courgettes. It sounded too good to pass up on and I knew it would be a sensible choice with no carbs and plenty of protein to help me power through the day.
To my surprise, the sea bass arrived at the table whole (yes, you guessed it: eyes, tail and fins still intact – not for the squeamish) and was stuffed with a bouquet of herby, garlicky goodness. It wasn’t the most attractive of dishes, but trust me, it tasted lovely. Never judge a book by its cover - or a sea bass by its crispy skin!
The sides of creamy carrot pureé and potato wedge shaped courgettes gave the dish a bit of texture and colour. I gave myself an internal high five knowing I resisted the temptation of chips with my fish, which is usually the norm for a girl from up North who lives by the sea! I didn’t manage to eat the whole dish, (which I guesstimated around 15SP-18SP) but what I did eat was absolutely scrummy.
The other girls ordered ‘Chilli Con Veggie’ with wholegrain rice and sour cream. The portions were extremely generous and not at all the kind of generic options you’d expect to see gracing a vegetarian menu. Vegetarian options are normally laden with cheese or heavy with pastry, but Weight Watchers offers a whole host of recipes which suit veggies and non-veggies alike! As a non-veggie, I still enjoy a vegetable based meal as they do tend to be a lot lower in SP values.
One of the lovely ladies who joined me for lunch was Lauren, a journalist from the Daily Express. We chatted at length about the plan, how it fits in with my lifestyle and how I find it so liveable. We moved onto the menu at Grain Store and she agreed that this restaurant definitely caters to the health conscious veggie as it’s not just about chips and margherita pizzas, it’s about bringing the colours of the rainbow to the plate and allowing them to shine!
It was jugs of still water all round for the table (you can’t beat H20), but the cocktail menu and bar area looked really inviting and quite affordable for the area – I’d love to come back here for a few drinks after work (and perhaps sample a dessert using some of my weekly SmartPoints allowance)! I can imagine this place bustling with busy workers on a Friday evening all enjoying their first weekend tipple.
So, here’s how my trip to The Grain Store fitted into my food diary: -
Sophie’s Daily SP Allowance: 35SP
Sophie’s Remaining Weekly Allowance: 5SP
15g Granola, Fruit Salad, Natural Yoghurt – 7SP
Roasted Sea Bass
2 x 250mls water
Guesstimate - 18SP
Weight Watchers from Heinz Beef & Red Wine Casserole – 8SP
Daily Allowance Used: 33SP
Daily Allowance Remaining: 2SP
You’ve all heard the saying ‘Fail to prepare, prepare to fail’ and this is imperative to my Weight Watchers success. Planning ahead is key for me; I knew I was coming for this meal a few days beforehand, so opted for a light breakfast and factored in a quick ready meal when I got back home from London. Planning ahead also helps me stay on track and eliminates that ‘guilty’ feeling you sometimes get after an impromptu eating out date. That’s why I love Weight Watchers, you can always have a little bit of what you fancy if you plan ahead!
Overall, I think The Grain Store was a perfect choice when it comes to a guilt-free, light lunch. Everything was freshly prepared and the vegetables take centre stage here instead of a supporting role, which makes a really refreshing change. But there was nothing theatrical about this food. It was honest, humble and healthy, offering a twist on classic comfort foods which I really liked.
The menu was fairly straightforward with plenty of Weight Watchers friendly buzzwords throughout most dishes such as ‘grilled’, ‘fresh’ and ‘raw’. Of course, there are indulgent options – which I would have hands-down sampled if I had more weeklies left to devour and my weigh in wasn’t in two days’ time!
I think The Grain Store has set the scene for what’s going to be a really exciting adventure as Weight Watchers Official Eating Officer and this place definitely gets my Weight Watchers Stamp of Approval!
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