Saturday, February 11, 2012

Leaf Vegetarian Restaurant

Michael and I went out last night to celebrate an early Valentine's Day. We decided to beat the rush for Tuesday and also go out on a night when we don't' have to hurry home to get to bed to get up early for work. We went to Leaf Vegetarian Restaurant in Boulder. Please go here! The food was incredible. It was exactly the dining experience we were hoping to have for a special occasion.

Daytime photo courtesy of "Gluten Freeways" blog
Nighttime photo courtesy of "Visit Colorado 360"

They had a special Valentine's Day menu which we ordered some things off of but since it was our first time there we also ordered off their regular menu. I was going to take pictures but it didn't seem like the kind of restaurant where I wanted to take out my cell phone and ruin the atmosphere of our romantic date. Sorry, friends. You'll just have to go there yourself!

OK. We ordered some appetizers:

"Oyster" Rockefeller with mushrooms, spinach and "cream" sauce. This was fantastic- they used oyster mushrooms and there was some kind of sea vegetable on top that when combined with the sauce and everything had a fantastic seafood taste with the texture of oysters- but not as chewy. The cream sauce was made with veganaise and nutritional yeast. It was really tasty and I would like to try to make it sometime!

We ordered another special V-day appetizer that was a dolma, which was a grape leaf? stuffed with good things and pine nut cream with a sun dried tomato sauce. Soooo good.

Oh they also brought out some vegan focaccia bread that was served with garlic and rosemary infused olive oil. Yum!!

Photo courtesy of "Peace by Pastries" blog

For our entrées:
Michael ordered the Mustard-Pecan Crusted Tofu with house-made tofu, maple glazed sweet potatoes, garlic-sautéed kale, red wine reduction. He says: "It was darn good"

I ordered the Spiced Apple Seitan "Loin", house-made seitan stuffed with green spiced apples, Brussels sprouts, root vegetable mash, horseradish cream. Oh man. Well, I'm pretty sure the root vegetable mash was not vegan- it definitely had some butter and cream in it but I bet you can ask them for a vegan side instead. This was actually only the 3rd time I've had seitan- and the only time I've had it when I haven't made it. The first time I made it I kind of liked it the second time is known as the "Great Halloween Satanic Seitan Disaster of 2011". I need to look at different ways to make seitan so it tastes really good. Michael wanted me to call this "Seitan's Loin" when I ordered it. Oh dear.

An example of a tempeh entrée courtesy of "My Modern Met" blog which is the same pic Leaf has on their website.
For dessert we ordered a raw chocolate-cherry torte (chocolate-strawberry on the website menu) with cherry coulis and almond coconut crust. Very decadent. There were other desserts that looked amazing but this was one they don't normally have so we decided to try it out.

Leaf was pretty fair price-wise for the quality of food. You know those vegetarian/vegan restaurants you go to that are overpriced or the food is the same quality or lower than what you make at home? This is not the case. This food is something I'd have to work really hard at making at home and it was a real treat to be able to try all the different courses. For the price of our food bill we probably couldn't have gotten all the ingredients to make the dishes. This restaurant is good not only for a special occasion but just for a normal date out!

When my friend Liz comes to visit we'll be going to Leaf. I'll probably update this again with more food descriptions! Oh- Leaf also has a vegan pizza night on Sunday! Michael and I will definitely be going back here.
Michael got me beautiful flowers for our early Valentine's Day evening!

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