• vegan brunch in seattle: cafe flora

    August 8th, 2010quarrygirlmore restaurants (not LA), seattle

    ask any seattle local, and they’ll tell you cafe flora is a “must hit spot” for visiting vegans. while the restaurant is merely vegetarian and admittedly very dairy and eggs heavy, much of the menu can be veganized, and the food is bloody fantastic.

    the fancy schmancy establishment has been around since ’91 and specializes in meatless cuisine using local, organic, and sustainable produce. the care they put into the dining experience really shows—not only are the dishes top notch, but the ambiance incredible. we visited cafe flora for brunch 2 years ago, and were completely floored. our experience last month was no different.

    vegan breakfast torta: scrambled tofu on a warm ciabatta roll with roasted poblano strips and grilled red onions. served with a smokey tomato relish and black beans. $10.50

    even some of my omnivore friends consider cafe flora to be the ultimate brunch spot in seattle, and i think they’re right. the regular menu has some great vegan options including waffles, scrambles, and cinnamon rolls…but on our last trip, we ordered a couple of the seasonal specials.

    i went with the vegan version of the breakfast torta (pictured above), and was pleased beyond belief. this dish is vegetarian and made with eggs by default—but just ask your server, and the yucky stuff can easily be swapped out for tofu, and the cheese can be omitted. and i can personally testify that the vegan version is THEBOMB.COM. we are talking a rich and delicately greasy tofu scramble heaped onto a soft warm ciabatta roll with grilled peppers. not to mention a massive side of black beans and crazy-good pot of smokey tomato salsa.

    vegan summer mushroom scramble: scrambled tofu with spring onions, grilled cremini mushrooms, fresh tarragon and chives. served with fruit garnish and roasted potatoes. $10

    the “summer mushroom scramble” special was just as astounding. the same magical tofu scramble (immensely flavorful and decadent, yet somehow not too heavy), was mixed with mushrooms, onions, chives, and tarragon. on our last trip, we were wowed by 2 different tofu scrambles at cafe flora, and this one was every bit as delicious. i am gonna go ahead and say that cafe flora has THE BEST tofu scrambles i’ve ever eaten. after 3 home runs, this must be much more than chance.

    we also ordered a side of spicy collard greens for $3.50, which was excellent. you can see it in the background of the pictures above. basically it was a tiny pot of tasty greens with a wonderfully spicy sauce on top. i’d highly recommend it.

    inside, cafe flora is just lovely. you feel like you are eating outdoors in the huge dining room, which is decorated with several plants and a trickling fountain. the place fills up pretty fast on weekends, so my advice would be to get there early. we arrived at 9am to open them up, and we weren’t the first ones there.

    next time you are in seattle, be sure to pay cafe flore a visit. the food is incredible, and the setting is beautiful. i really think you’ll love it. this is so the kind of place i would take my parents, i don’t know why, it just has that vibe.

    cafe flora
    2901 East Madison Street
    Seattle, WA 98112-4213
    (206) 325-9100

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