Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Native Foods Cafe

Native Nachos

Native Foods Cafe is one of my favorite vegan restaurants (after Sage and Flore). It's a great place for vegan comfort food. In addition to their comfort fare, they do offer healthier options like veggie bowls and salads. We usually don't order those because we eat healthy enough at home. Native Foods gives us a chance to splurge a little, perhaps a little too much.
There are several locations in Southern California, but my favorite one is in Culver City. The staff is so nice and helpful and there is a very pleasant ambience and a sweet breeze always flowing through there. I haven't tried everything here, but my favorite dishes thus far are the Native Nachos, Baja Surf Tacos, and the Portabello Seitan Sausage Burger. Some of the dishes imitate meat a little too much for my taste, so I don't order those, (i.e.: Twister Wrap and Chicken Run Ranch Burger) but hey, you just might like them. The Chili Cheese Fries are also killer, as is their Chai Tea (free refills by the way) and Boogie Bar. The Good Luck cupcakes are sinful. Really. So it's only a once in a while treat. The Lavender Lemonade is also a must on a hot day when you need something cool and refreshing.
If you are near one of their locations, it is definitely worth trying. Even meat-lovers will be thrilled with the flavors. Who knows, this place may just convince you that plant-based is the way to go! (If you're not already convinced.)
Just as a forewarning, when you go to Native Foods you may be tempted to try an appetizer and an entree and a dessert. That's a bit much. Yes, it's that good, but don't overindulge. My suggestion is to share an entree so you can try an appetizer too and then share a dessert. Balance is the key.

Scorpion Burger

Sweet Potato Taquitos

Baja Surf Tacos

Portabello and Sausage Burger

Twister Wrap

Chili Cheese Fries

Chocolate Love Pie

Cardamom Rose Good Luck Cupcake

Chocolate Good Luck Cupcake and Chai
Chocolate Good Luck Cupcake

Himal Chuli

Tarkari and Rice

This evening we dined at a Nepalese restaurant in Wisconsin called Himal Chuli. It was our first time having Nepali cuisine. It was delicious. The homemade meal was filled with exotic and flavorful spices and tasted very wholesome. We tried a dish called Katahar Kabab which is green jackfruit marinated with a special blend of Nepali spices, sauteed with onion, tomatoes, and cilantro and served with brown rice. My husband had the Rice, Tarkari and Dal (a mixed-bean soup). The dish includes rice served with a blend of vegetables simmered in turmeric, coriander, cumin, fresh garlic and ginger. Both dishes were full of spicy and robust. If you love flavor and spice, this is a cuisine you'll want to try. So if you're ever in Wisconsin and want some vegan fare, here's a great place to dine.


Katahar Kabab

Real Food Daily

Faux-stess Cupcake

Real Food Daily is another great vegan restaurant. The food always tastes fresh and wholesome. There are two locations, one in West Hollywood and another in Santa Monica. We've had brunch and dinner here and have never been disappointed. So far my favorite entrees have been the enchiladas (El Bandito Rojo) and the Supreme Burrito. Oh, and you can never go wrong with the Dark Fudge Brownie and "ice cream" for dessert. Just make sure you ask for extra spoons for that one. Here are some of the meals my family and I have enjoyed at RFD.

Vegetable Tamales with Mole (This was a special)

El Bandito Rojo

Tac-o' the Town

Supreme Burrito-Wet

RFD Burger

Dark Fudge Brownie with Chocolate Chips
(order it with vanilla ice "cream")

Gluten-Free Chocolate Strawberry Cupcake