This week, I’m starting a new spotlight feature series. I’ve been highlighting my clients who have been doing a stellar job with my Client Spotlight posts, but this week, I’m expanding my focus to include local businesses that support healthy lifestyles. This series will be called “Fit Foodie Finds.” Today, I’m featuring my first Fit Foodie Find: Good Karma Cafe, on Front Street in Red Bank. A completely vegan café, they offer a wide arrange of sandwiches, entrees, snacks, smoothies, coffees, and juices.
Ever since I moved from the Upper West Side to the Jersey Shore, I’ve been looking for a dining experience to replace the Peacefood Cafe on 82nd and Amsterdam. Even though I’m not vegan, I love having options for plant-based dining – it helps me to eat more vegetables and inspires me to think of more fresh and creative ways to use plants in my own cooking. Plus, sometimes I just crave a meal without meat or dairy.
After I ran the Lobster Run 5K in Asbury Park, I had lunch at the Good Karma Cafe for the first time, and I’m delighted that I’ve finally found my local vegan café! With so many menu options, I had a hard time making a choice between the nachos and the live spaghetti (“live” meaning raw). In the end, I went with the spaghetti on the recommendation of the server, and I’m so glad I did!
Savory meatballs (crafted creatively from nuts and vegetables) topped a bed of crisp angel hair zucchini noodles, and the dish was garnished with parmesan-style cashew cheese. The most unbelievable part of the meal – to me – was that the entire dish was completely raw. Not a single component of the meal had been heated or cooked, and after my 5K, the coolness of the crisp noodles and the savory combination of cashew cheese and tomato hit the spot and helped me transition into the rest of my day.
So many of my clients are vegan (or at least vegetarian), that seeing food through this lens helps me to think of creative ways to cast vegetables in the starring role. Restaurants like Good Karma Cafe serves not only the vegan and vegetarian community, but also anyone who wants to elevate their experience of vegetables beyond salad and steamed broccoli.
I’ll be back to try the nachos soon!