Raw Food Restaurants in Silverlake/Hollywood/Los Feliz area?
I have a friend coming in to town who is into the "Raw Food" thing, and am wondering where I can take her, pref. not on the West side. Any recommendations?
Jade Cafe is now called Cru --- http://www.crusilverlake.com/ I think it's the same ownership, but I never ate there before the switch, so I don't know what's changed.
I am not even a vegetarian --- I love me my double-doubles animal style with a strawberry shake --- but I have eaten at Cru several times and found it delicious. I actually like it better than other vegetarian/vegan restaurants that fall into the trap of meat replacement dishes that just fall short of the original. But no gluten stroganoffed wannabes here. The food is super fresh and filled with crazy tastes that you just don't find elsewhere --- shaved rutebegas, yam chips, a variety of nut pastes and tapenades, that are combined to great effect to create really delicate, subtle flavors. The appetizers are great -- all these tasty tapenades and nut pastes that I've actually tried to emulate at home. We've had great luck with their pastas (shitake ravioli in a white miso-coconut dressing that tasted like some wonderful aromatic butter that had my wife cleaning the plate with her fingers). The pizzas were not a favorite --- the toppings were good, but the crusts are strange and stray into the wannabe baked-goods category. I've also had a mushroom wrap which shocked me when it came out wrapped in two giant leaves of kale, but was fantastic (some sort of nut paste again, and a tasty assortment of vegetables). Deserts are also really, really good -- one of the best being the crepes with raspberry sorbet. Chocolate sauce and overtones of coconut. Yum! Good service, and reasonable prices --- appetizers & salads in the $7-10 range, the wraps are $10, and the entrees are $15-16.
I recently had my first raw food experience at Leaf Cuisine in Culver City. It's a cute order-and-sit-down place with a nice vibe, good lighting, and the staff was pretty nice. I ordered a "veggie sunburger" wrap (which was wrapped in kale, what a concept) and thought it was tasty to my omnivorous non-vegan palate, filled me up without feeling heavy and the flavors and textures were pleasant. It's not like it made me consider becoming a vegan but I would go back.
Here are some other restaurants I looked up before making my expedition, with menus:
Leaf Cuisine, Culver City
Taste of the Goddess, WeHo
Juliano's Raw, West L.A.
Jade Cafe, Silver Late
Lastly, I also went to a nice place called Solar Harvest a couple weeks ago on South Beverly Drive. It's not raw by any means but the menu is organized with full explanations to suit any health-conscious diner, from vegans to omnivores like myself. There are a few raw items as well. I had a fabulous bison burger mixed with blueberries (yes, weird but it works-- fruit = moisture in this lean meat) and then went across the street to Urth Cafe for a lovely dessert. I highly recommend Solar Harvest, too!