• leaf organics to shut down in february

    February 4th, 2010quarrygirlLA restaurants, leaf

    so sad to see yet another vegan business go under. leaf organics has already closed its sherman oaks location, and plans to shut down its culver city restaurant on february 13th at 9pm. their packaged foods will also cease to be available at local retailers. 🙁

    the good news is, you still have 9 days to get over to leaf and take advantage of the discounts they’ll be offering before they close.

    raw food by leaf cuisine

    photo from leaf’s website.

    while i’ve never been to leaf, i have enjoyed some of their ready made meals from whole foods. i definitely hope to get over to the culver city location before it’s gone for good.

    here is an email forwarded to me by a reader, that leaf sent out to their newsletter subscribers:

    Hello Leaf Lovers. I have some good news and some bad news, and I think I better start with the bad…

    Leaf Organics will be closing its Culver City restaurant on Saturday February 13th at 9 PM and our packaged foods will also cease to be available at the natural food retailers who currently carry it. While the Culver City restaurant does well, it is being dragged down as a consequence of the expansion we undertook in 2008/2009 just as the economy began its worst contraction since the Great Depression.

    During these next days we will be offering discounts daily so please come by and see us while there still is a Leaf Organics. The weekend of February 12-14th we will also have a food booth at the Conscious Life Expo at the LAX Hilton where I will be serving food and signing my book and DVD, “Raw Food for Real People”. So, please come and visit us there as well.

    Over the last 5 years it has been my pleasure and honor to serve you what I feel is optimally healthy, delicious and affordable food. I have received amazing gratitude and appreciation from the community over the years that only makes this letter harder to write. I wish to publicly share this gratitude and appreciation with my team who have put their love and care into our food.

    It has been my mission to “Make it easy for people to eat optimally healthy food.” So, I am truly sorry we have not been able to weather this storm. However, the good news is that the end of something is always the beginning of something else and I remain committed to my mission with some ideas and plans in place, so I invite you to contact me if you feel moved to participate, support or communicate in any way- please email me at: rod@leaforganics.com

    I also want to let you know that I will continue to teach courses and my last course here at Leaf Organics will be on Sunday February 21st from 12:30 – 5:30 PM. This is a 5 hour Raw Food Fundamentals Course that is incredibly comprehensive and practical. As a special last gift to the community, I will be reducing the price of this class from $125/person to $100/person. Please come hungry. Sign up at the restaurant or email me personally at the email address above.

    Love your food,
    Love your planet,
    Love your Self.

    Thank you all for the years of patronage, support and friendship.

    Blessings and love to you all,


    i am not liking this trend of vegan restaurants closing down. let this be a reminder to us all to go out and support our favorite vegan businesses.

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23 responses to “leaf organics to shut down in february” RSS icon

  • More to come I fear.. BUM.

  • Wow! I just met Ron at Whole Foods in West Hollywood 2 weeks ago where he gave a demo and talk about cooking Raw. It was amazing and he was generous to a fault not only in sharing info and great recipes but brought tons of food for us to sample from Leaf. It was so yummy in fact that after the hour with him I ran into the store and bought 2 containers of his cashew cream “cheeze” with onion and chive which is sooooooo awesome that I’ve bought 3 times since then. Oh well, the book will help I guess.

  • sad to see a vegan shop go under for sure, and especially bad for it to happen with the economy sputtering. but the Leaf restaurant I visited in Sherman Oaks wasn’t particularly welcoming and the prices were sky high for what you got.

  • OMG so SORRY, Rod not Ron.

  • Bummer. They make the best cashew cream cheese ever.


  • I noticed that the Whole Foods on 23rd and Wilshire , the one in Venice and the one at 5th and Wilshire in Santa Monica had all stopped carrying Leaf products.When I asked about it they told me it due to the poorer quality of the foods. I guess the people working there did not know about the major downsizing rather, closing.
    I had noticed the hit or miss quality of the food lately myself but I thought it was somehow due to the fact that it was prepared raw and may have been sitting around for awhile.
    Thankfully there are other brands of raw vegan food available now so all is not lost, but nothing compares to the Leaf Harvest Sandwich-yum.
    I do (did..wah) love that” sandwich ” and I already miss it as part of my diet. I usually bought it at least twice a week at Whole Foods.
    This is very sad ..sad news indeed. I was eating at Leaf before I went vegan .lol.I certainly hope it is not a trend!

  • I’ve never eaten at Leaf either, but I agree that I don’t like this trend of vegan restaurants/businesses closing. 🙁 It’s so sad!

  • Way to expensive..

  • Shut up! You’re kidding me! What a shocker! Wasn’t my favorite raw food restaurant, but always appreciated them, especially their to-go foods. : (

  • Meh, I tried to support the Sherman Oaks one when it opened ….but the wraps had a strange bitter/rich taste and I could never force myself to finish it. The place seemed cold and dirty, and the people working there didn’t seem to give a crap about anything. There’s plenty of killer vegan restaurants in LA….slack off and die!

  • I don’t think it was the economic downturn entirely that affected the Sherman Oaks location.

    It was not a good location, in a small corner plaza (parking was a pain)and their signage was imperceptible. I’m not the only one who didn’t notice the store for the longest time. I think there would’ve been more success much closer to or in Studio City. Also the place was not clean and after going there a few times I was turned. The kitchen side too looked dirty and not maintained. There are a couple other things but you get the point.

    It is sad cuz it’s good food.

  • Everyone I know hated eating at Leaf. It just was not a good restaurant. Then again, I only ate at the Sherman Oaks location. Now, if you want raw food in the Valley…Sunpower Cafe is the place to go. They put Leaf to shame.

  • I agree…The Sherman Oaks location is no good. I’ve only been there twice, but both times the employees were incredibly rude and the food was average at best and horrendously overpriced. While I am sad to see a vegan business close its doors, I am not surprised it’s Leaf.

  • While technically vegan, I wish “vegan” didn’t always get lumped in with “raw”. Like, everyone always calls them “raw vegan restaurants” and not just “raw restaurants.” I personally find the emphasis on dehydrated food unappetizing and the philosophical concept bewildering and extreme, as does everyone else I’ve talked to about raw cuisine, and so I think it does damage-by-association to the reputation of vegan cuisine (which we all know can be tasty and startlingly realistic).

    What does this have to do with Leaf closing? Not much, really; it sucks for them, but I can’t really consider it the “loss of another vegan restaurant” in my book.

  • I actually say “raw vegan” to distinguish it from the raw meat and raw dairy eaters 🙂

    I asked a couple of people about Leaf and they agreed that it wasn’t the cleanest.

  • No! This place was great and the desserts were so tasty. Sad.

  • I don’t want to talk bad on a vegan restaurant, but the Sherman Oaks location was just awful. I will probably drive out to the West Side thought before they close. I now have a guilty conscience.

  • Greg – my feelings exactly.

  • Sorry to say the food at the Culver City location had that sour/bitter taste too, and the employees had a “take it or leave it” attitude. I hated eating there.

  • Oh yeah, Sunpower had to be the nail in the coffin ….if I’m on Ventura and it’s Sunpower or Leaf, Sunpower all the way!

  • interesting, Rod has a degree on Economics and still failed. Too much too soon, no patience to build a sustainable business, with a greedy mentality.
    Once again a non-trained chef thinks too big and falls flat.
    A word to novice foodies like Rod, leave the food business to the food professionals.
    I moved to LA 6 years ago and have several opp’s to launch my own food line and declined because of all the economic markers, telling me to wait.
    To Rod, God’s got different plans for you, bro.
    Your food sucked and was overpriced.
    That’s why your writing books and selling DVD’s.
    We all need to make $$$$$$$$$$.
    At least your wife is cute.

  • feedyourheadshesaid

    i worked at the sherman oaks location for 9 months, and from the start knew the place wasn’t being ran properly. we would constantly run out of ingredients and were slow to receive new shipments. i heard mention from the manager that we were terribly in debt, and shortly after that rod decided to release a book. not the best business move. everything he did was to build up his ego, and he had no grasp of reality. the food was ridiculously overpriced and we were told to give very small portions. a lot of the food wasn’t raw and was heated to above 115 degrees. when the food was old, we were told to keep it. we constantly got nonorganic produce, and were told to say it was organic. the restaurant was even infested with roaches and not sanitary at all. there was not one day that i left work without feeling guilty. i’m fucking glad this place is gone for good.

  • I ate at the Culver City location several times and each time I always asked myself why I bothered to go back again. The food was mediocre at best, way way way overpriced (two of us easily chewed through $50 for lunch that left us hungry) and worst of all were the employees who all seemed to be time warped in from an early 1970’s Big Sur hippy fest, only without the love and replaced with a surly attitude. Living in Culver City I can honestly say that I LOVE M Cafe in downtown CC and the newish Green Peas at Braddock and Sepulveda where Vinotech used to be.

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