Cook’s Cuisine (Needles, CA)

“Before we sit down, I’ll be sure to clarify if they can prepare vegan food,” I reassured myself and Co as we entered. A spunky woman eyed us from the register. With my (always) friendly smile I asked “Can you make vegan Thai food? You know, like no fish sauce…”

She stared at me blankly.

“Ummm… no meat…” I continued.
Cook’s Cuisine (Needles, CA)

Lunch (Culver City, CA)

With the gross-out-gobble-up-the-greasy-world undercurrent to food culture, I’m amazed when people are weirded out by my food choices. I don’t mean weird food, but apparently weird combinations. So while people think 100×100 burgers, miles of pastrami and tuna melts are perfectly normal, nothing makes a cashier pause, do a double take and say “that’s the weirdest sandwich I’ve ever heard of” like ordering a design-your-own Veggie Burger slathered in peanut butter.
Lunch (Culver City, CA)

Urban Garden (Los Angeles, CA) [CLOSED]

I am not creature of habit. But after nearly 5 years working in NYC’s Murray Hill there were two things you could count on:

  1. Finding me at the Patrick Kavanagh Pub after work
  2. Eating mujadara from Kalustyan’s at least once a week

When I moved to Los Angeles, the crisp onion and smashed lentils of Mujadara exited my life. But two years later, thanks to an invite to try a new vegetarian/vegan friendly menu at Urban Garden, it’s back in my common rotation! But, while UG’s mujadara is decent, what sends me over the edge here the Garlic Sauce!
Urban Garden (Los Angeles, CA) [CLOSED]

Spitz (Los Angeles, CA)

A muddling of tasty colors… like a eatable Monet painting

I’ve grown weary of falafels. I don’t dislike them, but will restaurants please think of some more original ‘vegetarian options.’ That said, if I am going to eat a falafel, it better be damn good.

Is Spitz’s damn good? Er…  not exactly. But all the junk they pile on top/inside/around the falafel is!
Spitz (Los Angeles, CA)

Del Popolo (San Francisco, CA)

From the very beginning, the food truck moment has seemed silly to me. Chasing meals-on-wheels which never seem to be anywhere close when you crave them. We mutually burn fuel in a roundabout run that rarely leaves my belly or either of our wallets satisfied. And nothing is as frustrating as trolling through twitter and poorly kept Facebook pages just to find out the truck was on your corner… yesterday. I avoid them all together, except in an exceptional case.

Del Popolo is an exceptional case.
Del Popolo (San Francisco, CA)

Eating at Home 7/16/12

I love dining out, but sometimes you gotta eat at home. Living without my own kitchen for two years has been odd, but tonight I proved to myself that I can still wield a spatula!

Red Leaf Lettuce, Carrot, Red Pepper, Alfalfa and Radish Sprouts with Lemon and Black Pepper

Eating at Home 7/16/12

Cielo Verde at Playa (Los Angeles, CA) [CLOSED]

Roof gardens evokes idyllic imagery of secret  and lemonade sipping parties. But this utilitarian paradise on the top of Playa isn’t for playing. Not open to the public, I was lucky enough to sneak a peek around this organic hydroponic garden supplementing the already enthralling menu (food and cocktails!).

This visit also taught me that, like a cat, I can climb up a ladder but not down. Fortunately the General Manager, Brian, spotted me wavering on the roof and helped me back to the bar.

Seedlings

 

Cielo Verde at Playa (Los Angeles, CA) [CLOSED]