With heart disease, stroke, obesity, diabetes, dementia and other common and often fatal maladies on the rise, people are finally beginning to awaken to the fact that good health begins with what we choose to put on our plates. With mounting evidence that a diet largely consisting of plants can prevent and reverse many of these debilitating diseases, the world is beginning to embrace a plant-based, healthy lifestyle. That’s right, veganism has become cool. And it is high time.
Many fast food restaurants are jumping on the bandwagon and have begun to offer vegan options. Chipotles offers a couple of healthy vegan dishes, even eschewing the use of GMOs, and Wendy’s is now rumored to be creating a veggie burger. It’s a beginning.
On VOAA’s trip to Chicago to participate in VeggieFest Chicago this past weekend, we were blown away to discover Native Foods Café, a gem of a restaurant that offers nothing but healthy plant-based fare made from scratch. All vegan, all the time! What a concept!
My first time at a Cafe Gratitude restaurant was in 2009 at their premier location, in an area that was a little “off the beaten path” in San Francisco. The restaurant had a very colorful, earthy, laid back and eclectic vibe. The wall’s were covered with inspiration quotes, detailed murals, and their pledge to “Nourish a Thankful Community.” The servers and the people were warm and inviting and the restaurant was filled with a mix of hippies, young adults, nature lovers and foodie types. Their Venice Beach location doesn’t quite have that same vibe.
by Deanne Bryce
During a road trip between the Grand Canyon and Joshua Tree National Park , my husband Steve and I spent one night and morning in Phoenix. In search of a place to enjoy lunch after a morning visit to the Desert Botanical Garden, we found Desert Roots Kitchen (DRK) through an online search for organic foods. We discovered on arrival that Desert Roots Kitchen is 100% vegan. Their menu changes daily and they make everything from scratch in-house (except the dolmas). Desert Roots Kitchen cooks with many organic ingredients, especially staples like beans, lentils, produce, etc. They support and use local ingredients when possible, which is increasing and constantly evolving.
Rosetta’s Kitchen is a plant-based restaurant with a mission. Rosetta’s is not only dedicated to serving healthy whole foods but is also determined to feed the hungry. Every day a red beans and rice dish is prepared at cost for those in need. The price is a sliding scale according to what an individual can afford to pay. If someone can’t pay the minimum suggested price, they may ask for a food voucher which was donated by previous customers who have paid something extra so that all may eat.
Located off exit 5A from I-240, Rosetta’s front entrance faces Merrimon Avenue just as you are coming off the exit ramp. There is no parking in the front so you must turn left onto Merrimon, take the next right onto Woodfin Street and then another right onto N. Lexington Ave. It’s isn’t as complicated as it sounds. There is parking on Lexington and also in a lot across from Rosetta’s. Be sure you put your money in the meter because the police patrol this area often, including the parking lot.
Plant-based is the name of the game in this all vegan restaurant in Asheville, NC. Everything in this restaurant is plant-based, hence the name, Plant. There are no animal products of any kind available in this cruelty-free, environmentally friendly and health conscious establishment. Of particular note, there are no genetically modified products in any of the foods prepared at Plant.
Plant management has made a commitment to use only the finest ingredients available. Therefore, much of what you are served will be organic, to the extent it is available, and are sourced as much as possible from local farmers. Chef and co-owner, Jason Sellers, is fanatical about finding organic, quality ingredients. He has been instrumental in convincing other local chefs to buy organic products so that food venders will readily carry them. (more…)
The first time we visited Fern was during the Charleston Vegetarian Festival last summer. It was a blistering day and our beloved monster, Phoenix, was feeling the heat. We noticed the building as we were driving through town and it happened to be within walking distance of the festival. With covered out-door seating and entirely vegetarian, it seemed to be just the ticket. Phoenix settled down at the foot of our table and the waitress was kind enough to fill her dish with water. I had the Om Burger and I cannot for the life of me remember what Rich had. I can tell you that it was all delicious and I am filled with guilt every time I think about it. We had every intention of writing a review of Fern then but as it sometimes happens, life got in the way and Fern continued to slip farther back on our “to do” list. Recently, en-route to Charleston we decided to give Fern another try.
Fern is a charming café with lots of tables and bustling activity. When we were seated we were brought a glass of water infused with cucumbers. This was an unexpected and delightfully refreshing treat! I remember how welcome that was on our parched first visit to Fern.