Naked Deli has been bringing its own brand of clean eating to the residents of Heaton for three years, and now its owners have extended operations by opening a larger venue in Gosforth.
The clean eating phenomenon has been growing in popularity over the past few years but I have to admit, I wasn’t totally sure what it was all about when I met Naked Deli’s co-owner Kirstie Kimmins, ahead of reviewing the restaurant.
Kirstie is a café owner who opened the Chillingham Road-based Naked Deli with her partner – a shop fitter – after the pair became interested in the clean eating phenomenon.
She tells me that clean eating is about treating your body to highly nutritious meals that ditch the gluten, refined sugar, e-numbers and chemicals in favour of natural, health boosting ingredients.
Admittedly, this formula can mean that some of Naked Deli’s selections are on the pricey side.
Its cold press juices, for example, are £4 each. However, as Kirstie justifies, all the juices are pressed by hand on site, using specially imported machines that maximise the ingredients’ nutrients.
The new Gosforth restaurant, open for breakfast and lunch – as well as having a takeaway counter – has proved a giant hit with residents and it always seems busy (I know, as our office is located close by).
The food menu at Naked Deli has recently changed to allow more ease in picking and now centres around the deli counter selections which you can combine with a choice of chicken, beef, fish or veggie options.
In addition, Naked Deli offers a range of wraps, sweet jacket potatoes, burgers, omelettes and a Naked Plank to share.
This is combined with Naked Deli’s considerable drinks menu, which includes cold-press juices, superfood smoothies or green smoothies that promise to flush out toxins, improve digestion or burn fat, depending on which one you choose.
Meanwhile, there is also a range of organic teas and coffee – served hot or iced, to tempt you, if the juices and smoothies don’t.
In my experience of Naked Deli, I was pleased to find that clean eating doesn’t mean minimal eating. In fact, my two dining partners and I found our dishes – the Naked house salad with avocado, chargrilled chicken, free range poached egg, rocket and courgette £9; the chicken egg BLT with chargrilled chicken, organic bacon, poached eggs, tomato, avocado, spinach and rocket (£10); and the grass-fed beef burger with halloumi, tomato and sweet potato chips (£9) – provided ample sustenance for a lunchtime. Sadly, the selection of Naked cakes and treats must wait until next time.
That afternoon, instead of feeling lethargic (something that’s common after I have lunch out), I felt refreshed and full of energy. Suddenly, it hit me: Naked Deli is the perfect option for a business lunch.
The lack of food nasties helps you maintain concentration during your lunch and you’ll be raring to put any plans you make into action as soon as you leave!