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RECs for Lunch with a Vegan on Sunday

I'm having lunch with a good friend that I don't get to see very often. One reason we became good friends was due to our mutual love of food, namely BBQ. I love meat. My dear friend has since developed a conscience and has gone vegan. No meat, fish or dairy.

Does anyone have any suggestions? He's in Santa Monica and I'm in Ventura County. I feel bad when he has to order the pasta w/ marinera, but I really can't bear to eat the "loobster[insert equivalent]" from "Budha's Delight [insert equivalent]"

Thanks in advance.

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  1. Where are you planning on meeting? The Westside has many vegan options.

    1. It Might be a little out of your way but hey it's vegan BBQ and Beer in Eagle Rock! This is the last Sunday they are doing the Vegan BBQ.
      http://eatingla.blogspot.com/2009/08/...

      2 Replies
      1. re: PurpleTeeth

        I'm almost afraid to ask, but WTH is vegan bbq? Sounds like two polar opposites to me. I know you can grill soy products, but to call it barbecue of any sort, is blasphemy to me. Don't worry, I will read your link when I get a second.

        1. re: Phurstluv

          I am not a big fan of Non meat things acting like meat being a true meat eater myself. But if you had to meet a vegan Friend it could be fun. What the Hot Knives people are doing th seems pretty creative and it might be work it since his friend used to love BBQ before he went to the other side. That being said unless I had a Vegan friend to impress i wouldn't be running over there.;

      2. Why not meet at Hugo's in WeHo? They have great vegan options, and decent enough food for carnivores.

        Also in West Hollywood:
        Newsroom Cafe on Robertson
        Eat Well on Santa Monica

        In Brentwood, there's A Votre Sante, which is healthy and has plenty of vegan choices.

        If you want to come more toward him, M Cafe de Chaya in Culver City can meet both your needs.

        7 Replies
        1. re: Emme

          i've tried four of the ones on your list: hugos, newsroom, m cafe de chaya, and a votre sante.
          i would rate a votre sante , m cafe de chaya, and newsroom as being very good.
          to me, hugos rates as a distant fourth.

          1. re: Emme

            Weho is a touch out of the way, for someone coming from VC and the other in SM, dontcha think?

            1. re: Phurstluv

              There is a Hugo's in the valley off the 101 on woodman. I like that one much better than the Weho one. That's a great idea for a vegan and they have great meat options as well!

              1. re: PurpleTeeth

                I don't know why I suggested WeHo... I think in my head, I was saying Woodland Hills, not Ventura, so I was thinking good mid-point... Yes, given the long drive from Ventura, this might be a great meeting spot. I was trying to come up with somewhere in the middle, since NoHo seems farther away from both of them. Just FYI, in case this is the pick, the restaurant is on Riverside just east of Coldwater Canyon.

            2. re: Emme

              If you were going to come down PCH... theoretically you could meet in the Palisades at somewhere like Cafe Vida...

              Or in Malibu, Taverna Tony!

              1. re: Emme

                Oh, geez, trust me, there's no good place for dinner in the Palisades!!! (except my house!!)

                1. re: Emme

                  i once tried getting to the valley for a date with a guy in woodland hills using pch to topanga canyon.
                  it was practically impossible/impassable.
                  after i spent over an hour in the car and i still was nowhere near topanga canyon, my date, out of sheer pity, started driving in my direction and we ended up at taverna tony's.
                  i don't plan to try that route again.

              2. would encino work as a location?
                if so, how about itzik hagadol, an israeli restaurant across the street from the town center shopping center.
                they serve an array of salads (most of which are vegan) and will refill your salad plates for free as you empty them.
                they also serve skewered meat and hummous and falafal.
                great homemade bread.

                1. This might be a bit of a drive for your Ventura County friend, but M Cafe de Chaya in Culver City (it's macrobiotic, so it's raw fish and vegan--I think they may cheat a little on the fish as I recall having a miso marinated cod in my bento box) and Tender Greens in Culver City have been very popular choices with my three vegan friends. I think there may be a Tender Greens in WeHo and possibly one in the Valley? You would have a nice selection of various things as well.

                  There's also an M Cafe de Chaya (the original) in Hollywood -- parking is difficult, however.

                  Both places are order at the counter and at M Cafe they will then bring your food to you.

                  1. I went to Inn of the Seventh Ray a couple weeks ago, and was insistent upon having a benedict or at the very least poached eggs and bacon. I took one look at the buffet and changed my mind. Everything I ate was delicious and everything I ate was vegetarian, and most of what I ate was vegan.

                    1. I recently took myvery carnivorous friend to Vin Loi Tofu in Reseda. She hemmed and hawed and bawked at the idea of eating non-meat stuff made from tofu or seitan. But, it was hot and we didn't want to eat heavy things so we went. Upon our departure, she couldn't thank me enough for turning her on to such a cool, delicious place.
                      Good halfway point for the two of you as well.
                      http://www.vinhloitofu.com

                      http://www.vinhloitofu.com/

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: Kitchen Queen

                        If the valley is the middle, I'll also toss in a rec for Middle Eastern food... perhaps Hummus Bar and Grill or Al-cazar? Or even Carnival in Sherman Oaks?

                        1. re: Kitchen Queen

                          i LOVE LOVE LOVE the food at vin loi tofu.
                          that said, it is a little hole-in-the-wall.
                          their prices are low enough that my eating strategy there is to order practically everything on the menu and eat 'til i'm ready to bust. . . . . .
                          the left-overs don't last long.