January is all about health kicks, but with February fast approaching the post-Christmas enthusiasm is starting to wane. So when I was asked to check out Fuel Station Kitchen, Liverpool’s new healthy eating restaurant, I jumped at the chance.
From the off I loved the idea; it comes amidst the constant stream of American-style smokehouses and pulled-pork obsessed hipster joints that are popping up everywhere. Fuel Station Kitchen evolved from Fuel Station, a healthy juice and protein shake bar that was launched on Renshaw Street a few years back.
The business was set up by brothers Kurt and Jay Wilson in 2012 and has since gained a reputation from its fans for great service and great tasting products. Its newest venture, Fuel Station Kitchen, opened as a pop up in Signature Living on Button Street in December. As well as a restaurant setting serving healthy dishes, the venue also provides juice detox and diet services, delivering fresh food to your door.
I’ve worked part-time in gyms since I was 16 and know how daunting kickstarting a new healthy lifestyle can be. So my first question was will this concept take off for people that don’t train?
The thing I loved the most about Fuel Kitchen (aside from the amazing menu, but we’ll get to that) is the setting. It’s not clinical, nor is it a food ‘hub’ where you choke down a protein shake in between squats. Located in Signature Living, the luxurious setting is relaxing and makes the trip feel like a dining experience with about a third of the usual calorie intake, which I think makes it much more accessible to people just starting out on a healthy eating and fitness programme.
The menu was developed with help from the London Carriagework’s head chef and there’s hardly a salad in sight. I sampled a range of Fuel Kitchen’s most popular dishes, which were all filling, imaginative and full of great ingredients.
The Asian salmon salad could have been something from the kitchens of a high-end diner, with delicious crispy skin and a perfectly cooked vegetable medley. The chicken wholemeal wrap was my favourite dish and I’ll definitely be going back to try it again.
Afterwards, we were treated to a sample of desserts. Yes, DESSERTS! Their brownies looked and tasted indulgent and the protein pancakes, made from porridge oats, soy milk and cottage cheese, also felt like a naughty treat – you’d never have guessed what was in them. Luckily enough, it was all guilt free.
The price of the food was really reasonable. The wrap with a choice of three fillings will set you back just £5, rubbishing claims that nutritious food breaks the bank.
The passion of the staff also shines through. They’re not intimidating and know what they’re talking about when it comes to ingredients and their benefits. The chef also took five minutes out of his day to come up and have a chat, tell us a bit about the menu and ask for feedback.
Funnily enough, I left the restaurant fuller than I would have been I’d I’d have gorged myself on a Full English or burger and chips. I for one hope this concept takes off and with two ambitious entrepreneurs at the helm, I think we’ll be seeing more Fuel pop-ups across the city.