Monday, June 24, 2013

The Leptologists Eat at Portia's Cafe

Candice: Are you going vegan on me?
Paul: You know better than that! But Portia's Cafe looks interesting, don't you think?
Candice: I'll give you that. I like a restaurant with a mission and owner Portia Yiamouyiannis has one.
Paul: No animal products, save for the honey for the tea. Local ingredients when possible. Highly organic. Raw food for maximum nutrition. No genetically engineered foods. And clean, filtered water.
Candice: That is a healthy agenda.
Paul: I don't know about the anti-genetic engineering stance. Seems a little Luddite to me.
Candice: Luddite. You don't even own a smart phone.
Paul: The cafe is in Clintonville on Indianola, a short drive from downtown.
Candice: Parking is tight, but we find a spot.
Paul: They don't need much parking. I doubt they could seat more than 30 people in here.
Candice: They also do some take-out from their fridges. I love the orange walls. It makes the place bright and inviting.
Paul: It smells wonderful as well.
Candice: We're seated quickly and peruse the menus.
Paul: We've never done a vegan restaurant before, but the selection and diversity on the menu is wide.
Candice: We're getting the dipper sampler.
Paul: No question. And the spanako rice wraps. I'll get the lentil soup.
Candice: I'll take the coconut curry soup and the lettuce breakfast patty.
Paul: I'll have the beans and rice.

Dipper Sampler
Candice: The sampler comes with our choice of veggies, rice chips, or tortilla chips as scoopers.
Paul: We go with veggies and rice chips. The sampler comes with four dips.
Candice: A walnut pate, which is very subtle in flavor. It needs something to smoke out the flavor. But it's good.
Paul: The hummus is delicious, light in the mouth, and...
Candice: ...soulful. The spinach and artichoke dip is all chunky goodness.
Paul: The guacamole is deep and fresh.
Candice: All of the dips are fresh, and I love these rice chips that came with the dips. This is a great platter.

Rice Wraps
Paul: These wraps are excellent. The pesto in the middle is shocking with flavor.
Candice: Yes, it centers the wrap. And the assortment of colors and textures makes this am amazing wrap. I love the alfalfa.
Paul: Spinach, greens, artichoke, and onion mix with the alfalfa and the sauce. Good stuff.
Candice: My soup is not a soup.

Coconut Curry Soup
Paul: What?
Candice: It's a stew, not a soup. It should be advertised as such.
Paul: But the taste?
Candice: It's sweet, but when I salt it, the curry becomes smokier. It's a good stew, but overwhelming in flavor and texture.
Paul: My soup is thick and hearty.

Lentil Soup
Candice: That's not a soup either.
Paul: It looks like a soup to me.
Candice: Look at my spoon. I've taken a spoonful and turned the spoon upside down.
Paul: I see your point. The soup is sticking to the spoon.
Candice: This is a mush, not a soup, which is perfectly acceptable. Just don't call it soup!
Paul: In any case, it's a good soup, I mean, mush.
Candice: The waitress has given me instructions on folding my breakfast patty lettuce wrap.

Lettuce Wrap
Paul: Seems complicated. How does it taste?
Candice: It is utterly delicious. I love it. What a great combination of flavors. Want to try it?
Paul: There's just too much green in it.
Candice: Some vegan you turned out to be.
Paul: My beans and rice are just that. Beans and rice.

Beans and Rice
Candice: The menu literally says "Just Beans 'n' Rice."
Paul: No false advertising there. It seems a bit bland.
Candice: There's salt.
Paul: Good point. Adding a splash of salt kicks up the flavor. It's very pleasant. Nice texture to the rice. Firm beans. I end up finishing all of it.
Candice: So, what do you think of our vegan lunch?
Paul: I thought it was great. All of my food was flavorful. I'd come back, especially for the dipper sampler.
Candice: I agree. My breakfast patty lettuce wrap was wonderful and I'd come back for that as well.
Paul: Decent prices, no wait, and we'd come back. Sounds like a win.
Candice: If it wasn't for the misnamed soups, it would have been perfect.
Paul: Stews and mushes are not soups. I get it.
Candice: It's best to be clear on a menu. So no one is disappointed.
Paul: Agreed.
Candice: Otherwise, I was satisfied all around.
Paul: Next time, we should get steaks.
Candice: Also agreed.

Candice   Paul   

Worth the Price?
Worth the Wait?
Worth Coming Back?

Portia's Cafe on Urbanspoon

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