Posts tagged ‘vegetarian’
Fud is the newest kid on a block that has become delightfully restaurant-intensive. There are seven restaurants within a block of the 17th and Summit intersection on the Westside. Along with Westside Local, Chez Elle, Los Alamos Market Y Cocina, Lill’s on 17th, and Blue Bird Bistro. That doesn’t include Fervere Bakery, which only sells bread (but what great bread it is).
Fud is a completely vegan restaurant, with a heavy and successful emphasis on Mexican dishes. Vegan is distinguished from vegetarian by its absence of any dairy. The “meat” in these and other entrees is either green jackfruit or a wild rice concoction. The one with jackfruit is called Jack Phish and is particularly flavorful because of the addition of mole to the mix. Chalupas, tacos, burritos and even wraps all feature one of these meat substitutes along with Cashew Goji Cheddar, Cashew Lemony Cream, Pico de Gallo and Limony Guac. Meat eaters will not be disappointed. These dishes taste fabulous and much like what you’d enjoy at a Mexican restaurant.
What is green jackfruit? According to my colleague Jill Silva of the Kansas City Star, It’s “the world’s largest tree fruit, …it is indigenous to parts of Africa, Brazil and southeast Asia. The goose-pimpled, green-skinned oval fruit can weigh up to a colossal 100 pounds. The flesh can be eaten ripe or unripe.”
The green jackfruit can also be found on the menu in a Reuben and a pulled “pork” sandwich dressed up with barbecue sauce.
“Wraps” sport large collard green leaves rather than tortillas, which is clever and more healthful. Fillings include those same Mexican ingredients or vegetables, including one with roasted portabello mushrooms.
In addition to sampling the Mexican fare, we also ordered a spicy tofu sandwich served on multigrain toast with tomato, lettuce and a mayo-like spread. It looked just okay and I thought I’d take a couple of bites and call it a day. I’m not a huge tofu fan, especially the harder variety, and this looked like it would be low on the flavor scale. But it tasted fantastic! I ate every bite. And I felt like I was eating a substantial sandwich, but without the fat that usually is part of that equation.
The menu varies daily and the day’s specials can be found on the website. Pictures of each dish are also displayed, which is a helpful tool for novice vegans. While mainly a lunch spot, it has expanded its hours and is now open for dinner Thursday-Saturday.
While the food was a pleasant surprise, the atmosphere left something to be desired. I’m all for California casual, with an open kitchen and a minimalist dining area. I liked the wood floors, but it was so uneven that the table moved each time we put our hands or elbows on it. And one or two matchbooks or sugar packets wouldn’t do the trick even if that had been an option. One of us had to hold the table so that our plates didn’t slide into our laps. And the ventilation definitely needs some work. Looking into the kitchen we could see the smoke from the stove, which resulted in our clothes smellng like our lunch when we left. It also got quite warm and the windows fogged up. Every time someone opened the door we luxuriated in the fresh air that briefly passed our way.
Okay, so Fud has some cosmetic issues to address. But once it does, I will definitely go back. The food made me feel virtuous and given how often I eat out, that’s certainly something that doesn’t happen often!
Yes, this is the same coffee shop that was on Southwest Blvd. for years. They moved earlier this summer to Waldo, to be part of the renaissance taking place there. The new locale is next to Kennedy’s in the modern energy-efficient building on 75th St. that Dianne Botwin developed.
It’s a very cool structure, with lots of glass, metal and wood–very 21st Century, and very unlike the building that stood on that spot before fire destroyed it in 2007. One of the things I like most is that it was designed to allow the outside in. The glass walls can be pushed aside so customers feel as though they are on a patio and can enjoy some fresh air before going back to the office or home.
But this is not just another pretty face. The coffee at Coffee Girls is very smooth and tasty. Though I am far from a coffee aficionado and usually drink tea in the mornings, the standard for me is whether I need to add a sweetener (to make it taste like my beloved coffee ice cream). This coffee didn’t need a thing.
Non-coffee drinkers will enjoy the fresh juices and smoothies, comforted in the knowledge that the latter are made with non-fat yogurt. Light breakfast items are offered as well, along with sandwiches and salads for lunch. Though many of the sandwiches will satisfy carnivores, the menu is heavy on offerings that will make vegetarians particularly happy.