Sunday, February 19, 2012

Indigo Food Cafe


I had serious doubts when I heard about the raw vegan high tea at Indigo. (By the way someone please explain to me why the price is $40 for 2 people, but only $19 per person.) Not only was the food vegan, it was completely unprocessed as well? And gluten free? And sugar free? Immediately I started thinking about rabbit food... So when the food arrived, I was amazed by the presentation and detail. Just look at this! It was hardly rabbit food.


We started with the savouries on the bottom tier. The first item I had was the collard roll enchilada with enoki mushrooms, alfalfa sprouts, carrots and other veggies all wrapped up in a collard leaf and topped with a creamy sauce. I had expected it to taste very grassy because it was basically a collection of leaves and veggies, but it was so delicious that I wouldn't mind eating 10 of these for breakfast. The next item I tried was the corn salad tossed with avocado and parsley in the same creamy sauce. It was tasty as well, but not as impressive as the collard roll. The third item was the crunchy whole-seed cracker topped with greens and a slice of tomato. There were a few extra crackers and crispy salted kale chips for sharing.


The middle tier consisted mainly of savouries as well. There were mushrooms and tomatoes stuffed with creamy coconut cheese. I was wondering how a vegan meal could consist of cheese, but apparently it was made with coconut milk. The creamy yogurt was also made with coconut, and was mixed with crunchy raw sprouted granola and fresh strawberries and blueberries. I was never crazy about yogurt, but this tasted way better than store-bought yogurt. I also enjoyed the small round pat of coconut cheese topped with spices and salts, but found out after I had eaten it that it was supposed to be eaten with the crackers from the bottom tier. The only item I found rather average was the Asian noodle salad. It was mild and refreshing, but it was definitely not one of the best noodle salads I've had.


The desserts tasted as good as they looked. I particularly enjoyed the coconut cream pie topped with cocoa nibs and goji berries, and the mini berries cheesecake topped with pomegranate seeds. The mini chocolate ganache was delectable as well, but I found it a bit sweet for my tastes. I was very impressed though, that the chocolate flavour could be so rich for a raw vegan and sugar-free ganache.


I opted for the pear sencha green tea. It was surprisingly quite fragrant and strong with the delicate scent of pear oil and jasmine. The flavour didn't fade out much even after 2-3 refills. One little story with our tea was that the owner gave us an extra cup since there were 3 of us sharing 2 pots of tea, but she did not tell us there was a $3 charge for sharing. I found that rather unreasonable because an extra pot of tea costs only $3 as well and if we had known, we would have opted to buy an extra pot instead of sharing. So be warned: don't share!


I also tried the buckwheat crepe ($8), one of the only cooked items on the menu aside from the perogies. The crepe itself reminded me of the steamed Ethiopean flatbread called injera. It was slightly sour and the texture was soft and spongy. The veggie filling and creamy sauce were similar to the collard roll, except there were also raw coconut slices, nuts and cheese inside. The dish was garnished with a small salad of carrot shreds and an olive.


I was really impressed with this raw vegan meal as I hadn't expected the food to taste so good. I'm happy to report that I'll definitely be back for the afternoon tea. The $20 afternoon tea is very good value, considering the crepe costs $8 and is definitely not enough to satisfy the average appetite. I've read a few reviews about inattentive service, but I didn't have a problem with it at all. Hot water for the tea was refilled promptly and the owner came by regularly to check on us. The biggest problem with this place was the extremely cramped and uncomfortable seating. The wooden tables had ornate cast-iron bases that looked very pretty but were not practical at all. My knees kept bumping into the cast-iron and there was no space to put my legs. I had to sit in a rather awkward position with my legs on either side of the table. If only the seating were more comfortable, this place would be perfect.

Note:
- Remember to call in for reservations for afternoon tea.
- Do not share tea. Order your own pot instead as the price is the same for buying and sharing.

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10 comments:

Kirby on February 19, 2012 8:00 pm said...

Wow! What attracted you to this place in the first place? I have never heard of this vegan restaurant but their high tea and hot food items look incredibly interesting!

KayCe on February 19, 2012 8:38 pm said...

woah, everything looks so good! Its so healthy too! Makes me want to come here so bad..

krispymilk on February 19, 2012 9:08 pm said...

@Kirby: Deal vouchers, what else? :P
Oh it was VERY interesting. Definitely a one-of-a-kind high tea experience. Both the presentation and taste were just phenomenal. I think the raw vegan thing is perfect for you since you seem to be a bit of a health nut!

@KayCe: I would highly recommend this place for the food. I felt cleansed and invigorated after the meal. Give it a try!

Kirby on February 19, 2012 10:14 pm said...

haha I am and raw vegan sounds right up my alley of new things to try! Where did you get deal voucher? Redpocket? Groupon?

krispymilk on February 19, 2012 10:39 pm said...

@Kirby: Indigo has been featured on several different deal sites I believe... I got mine from Ethical Deal. Keep an eye out for coupons, but honestly $20/person is not bad considering all the work that goes into preparing the food.

Gloria on February 20, 2012 1:12 am said...

Vegan food that looks edible to me?!
I need to try this once they have another deal!

krispymilk on February 22, 2012 11:56 am said...

@Gloria: Haha go ahead and wait a bit, but I think $20/person is reasonable.

pyaria on February 22, 2012 5:28 pm said...

That looks delicious!

krispymilk on February 22, 2012 8:21 pm said...

@pyaria: Yes it is! Delicious AND healthy, what could be better? This place is on my to-do list with you when you come back to Vancouver for good :)

pyaria on February 24, 2012 12:09 pm said...

ahahhaha once i get a job, my dear......!

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