Saturday, 25 June 2011

Organic Lives.

Organic Lives is the name of a restaurant in Vancouver that we went to tonight.  I wanted to celebrate getting my new job, so at first I chose Annapurna, a vegetarian Indian restaurant.  Then, when it turned out that the restaurant was closed, I did a search of vegan restaurants in Vancouver and came across this one. I thoroughly scoped out their website, liked their style, and decided that was where we would go.  We go out to eat so rarely that we always want to make sure it counts!  I'm not a raw foodist by any stretch of the imagination, but I do really like raw foods if only for the interesting flavour and texture combinations that the more creative raw food restaurants and manufacturers manage to produce.  So we checked it out.

We had a reservation and actually got really dressed up because it was a celebration, so why not?  Plus, we're getting married in less than a week and this is probably one of our last chances to go out as boyfriend and girlfriend.  Needless to say, we were quite overdressed, by that was fine.  The staff were all really friendly and knowledgeable, and the owner was there, and came by to speak with us.  It turns out that the restaurant is opening up a second location in conjunction with a yoga and meditation studio that is being opened in downtown Vancouver by Deepak Chopra, of all people.  The owner, Preet, also knows John Robbins, the author of Diet for a New America, the book that kept me vegetarian all these years.

The food is vegan, organic and raw.  You are probably wondering what the food was like.  Well, first of all, it was very good.  I've had lots of raw foods, but I have to admit, this was probably the best I've ever had.  There was a fair bit of variety, and lots of great flavour (and texture) combinations.  Tim had the Mexi Spirals and loved them, despite being a meat eating non-raw foodist.  He was actually a bit skeptical about the place before we went, but didn't tell me because he didn't want to spoil my special treat.  We originally planned to share all of the things that we ordered, but because the Mexi Spirals contained Brazil nuts, which I have a severe allergy to, we had to revise our plan.  We did share the tapas platter, which had a nice variety of the restaurant's most popular inventions.  I ended up having the pizza for my main course.  It was delicious, but nothing like a pizza, of course.  To be honest, I don't eat raw food so that I can pretend I'm eating "normal" food.  It's like eating Indian food, but hoping that it will taste like Thai food.  I enjoy it for what it is, and the best part is how creative it always ends up being.
"Pizza" and "Caesar Salad"

For dessert we had something called "The Ridiculous".  It is essentially a chocolate ganache torte.  It was absolutely brilliant! The restaurant makes its own chocolate, so it was top quality.  I left full, better educated about raw food and nutrition, and happy to have eaten somewhere that honestly cares about more than its bottom line.

All in all, if you are open-minded and curious about raw food, I would highly recommend visiting this restaurant.  On top of everything else, they sell lots of raw foods in bulk that are difficult to find elsewhere.  We left with a jar full of the owners special super greens mix that is loaded with terrific health benefits.  Tim and I are going to start incorporating it into our smoothies every morning.  We can't wait!

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