Welcome to Vendor Spotlights, where we introduce you to the incredible people and stories behind the screens, all working to provide the meal that’s just arrived at your office at the click of a button. This week we’re talking to a London staple, Abokado, famous for their affordable prices and huge range from bagels to noodle bowls, all within their mission to create delicious, fast and freshly made food. Abokado is an office staple for a reason, having created a menu that you can visit for breakfast, lunch and dinner and you’ll still be able to find something delicious and nutritious that fits your schedule and your dietary needs.
In keeping with the spirit of the multicultural influences of the menu including Japanese style katsu curries and sushi platters, to Korean chicken burgers and Hawaiian inspired Poké bowls, it makes sense that the inspiration for Abokado came from a round-the-world trip.
Mark and Lindsay, the founders, set out in 2003 to travel around the world, and instead found the inspiration to set up a fast, fresh and vibrant food option during their stay in Sydney, Australia. Sydney, with its influx of Asian influences, thriving restaurant culture and abundance of fresh produce, had a flourishing lunch scene that was perfect for office workers, something Mark thought should be brought to London’s hungry 9-5 crowd.
Fresh out of a career in banking, Mark knew that the lunchtime situation in London was dire, and there was little for those who needed something fresh, healthy and delicious that suited their lifestyle better than bland, unsatisfying sandwiches at the desk or heavy lunches out. At least, it was a far cry from the excellent home-cooked meals he was used to, growing up with family time spent around the kitchen table, a tradition the couple had brought into their own lives and used as time to connect first as a couple and then with their four children.
Mark and Lindsay then set out to bring their vision to life, bringing together both the inspirational example set by the Sydney lunch scene, the vibrancy of Asian dishes they had experienced during their travels and the attitude that food is a space to nourish and bring people together.
This allowed them to establish a restaurant that catered to the office crowd by serving up delicious, nourishing meals with a focus on fresh high-quality ingredients and affordable pricing, while using food as a vehicle for fostering community. Mark sees this as the thing he is most proud of for his business, having been able to create a community of passionate and loyal individuals who are always striving to make Abokado the standout in its field, working hard by making the menu from scratch with fresh ingredients each day. Fostering a great community has been key to Abokado’s success, giving staff the opportunity to grow alongside the business as it has developed from a single location to multiple restaurants across London.
The Abokado Menu
The Abokado menu is known for being thorough, spanning multiple continents and flavour profiles, and including enough options to fulfil every office-worker’s need from morning to evening. Mark’s ideal way to eat healthy at work is naturally to visit Abokado, as the menu is designed to offer meals that work for a full day of healthy eating. Start the day with an avocado and vegan bacon bagel made with fresh Hass avocados, which Mark sees as the item that best represents the brand, especially as the brand took its name from the Japanese word for avocado. Looking for something bright, fresh and exciting for lunch? Try out the salmon poke bowl, something new on the Abokado menu that the team is very excited about, for a nutritious and protein filled meal. And if you’re still hungry, Abokado has a wide selection of rice and noodle bowls, along with their extensive range of sushi, from dragon rolls to entirely vegan options, all of which is freshly made from scratch everyday in their on-site kitchens.
In order to produce such a complete offering, the team at Abokado has consistently been tweaking and fine tuning the menu so that they are constantly doing something new and exciting while perfecting the staples they’ve developed a reputation for. While it’s not still on the menu, Mark remembers the Shwrap range, a large sushi hand-roll designed to be eaten like a wrap, that was the first of its kind on the market. This was the first item on the menu that got him truly excited about the future of the business, seeing it as a place to try out new and fresh food ideas that would bring the excitement of fresh, good food back to banal office lunchtimes. Nearly 10 years on from the trip that inspired Abokado, it’s fair to say that they’ve been able to make a major impact by creating vibrant, healthy meals that make lunchtime a joy, not a chore.
Check out Abokado’s menu, available through Feedr to get all the incredible meals we’ve talked about here delivered straight to your office!