Sunday, November 30, 2008

Real Food Daily in L.A.

One of the restaurants we got to try on our short trip to L.A. was Real Food Daily, a vegan restaurant on Santa Monica Boulevard.
All of the menu choices are vegan, including the beer and wine list, which was quite extensive. I had a California-brewed Santa Cruz Pale Ale, a hoppy high alcohol concoction.
For appetizers we started with the Better With Cheddar Nachos ($11.75), which consisted of crispy housemade chips piled high with beans, vegan cheese and sour cream, and the Nori Maki sushi rolls, made with sweet brown rice, avocado, tempeh and collard greens (10 pc. $10.95). Both were very delicious.
For my main entree I decided to try the Salisbury Seitan ($13.25), their version of the salisbury steak. It came with hearty mashed potatoes coated with cream gravy and a divine Caesar salad. I also sampled the BBQ Tofu Chop Salad ($13.95). With small cubes of flavorful barbeque tofu, various vegetables, cashew cheese and ranch dressing, this was a clear winner.
Salads seem to be Real Food Daily's strong point. Another person at our table had the Mexicali Chop ($12.95). It had pinto beans, avocado, vegetables, tortilla strips in a lime-cilantro dressing. It was very good.
The Club Sandwich ($15.25), with seitan, tempeh bacon and avocado on sourdough, was a hit with the big meat eater at our table. He said it tasted better than a traditional club.
The deserts were not as good as the rest of the meal, but they still held their own. We sampled the Chocolate Birthday Cake ($6.00) and found it to be a little dry and not very flavorful. The Pecan Pie ($6.00) was pretty good. The best dessert we tried was the Fudge Brownie Bowl with soy vanilla ice cream ($6.00).

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