By definition and stereotype, I am a carnivore in the truest sense of the word.
I’d dropkick asparagus, to get to some gosh darn beef!
However, in the spirit of expanding my knowledge and exploring all dining ventures which Cape Town has to offer, I tried the other side of the foodie spectrum.
This weekend, I vacated my cosy bed to try something ENTIRELY new to me. Say hello to this weeks foodie escapade stop: The Hungry Herbivore.
Vilified by the great meat-loving majority, and self-righteous in their judgement of carnivorous folk, Vegans and vegetarians gorge themselves on the idea that their diet is good for the planet…and it is! Remember that environmentalism is unequivocally a mainstream issue now, so the slaughter of millions of plants for consumption, is a go!(…because reasons)
Anyway, I visited The Hungry Herbivore for breakfast (what better way to test the lifestyle than with pitting it against Bacon & Eggs), which is ideally located in the central business district – just off the side of what is ranked as one of the finest foodie strips in the world, Bree Street.
By definition, a herbivore refers to an animal that gets its energy from only eating plants. The restaurant predicated itself on providing
“delicious, clean and honest comfort food and snacks that are rich in nutrients…products are completely vegan and plant-based.”
So how did I fare without a meaty meal?
I was expecting some complicated menu filled with entire substitutions of mainstream carnivorous dishes. Turns out that The Hungry Herbivore owners really took the idea of setting themselves apart from the norm, to heart. They have created a menu of hearty, heart-healthy options for one to enjoy – and I’d be remiss in not saying that I did rather enjoy my breakfast.
I asked the manager for recommendations – and while the Curry of the Day served with steamed Jasmine rice, salsa, chutney, crispy poppad, sounded awesome – I chose the Herbivore’s Breakfast.
My plate was laden with BBQ basted vegan bacon, tofu scramble, garlic mushrooms, greens, fresh tomato and Ciabatta toast.
The bacon was on the non-existent side of crispy, but this wheat protein-rich breakfast was rather yummy and filling. Gluten-full and portioned well, 7/10 would recommend! Tofu, which is seasoned well, really isn’t bad guys.
I’m actually really keen to see whether their pizzas and burgers are also tasty.
I always fuss about presentation because I think its indelicate for a restaurant to not take pride in the way their food is dished. The Hungry Herbivore is actually really meticulous in delivering good presentation, while diners experience their hospitality and immerse themselves in the warm, intimate ambiance.
For those not of the carnivorous persuasion, it’s actually a bit of a mission finding a dining establishment in Cape Town dedicated to your needs and tastes. The Hungry Herbivore is so good at their job, one can leave their establishment with an entirely new, less harsh outlook on Veganism.
I’m considering a return trip. Their desserts promise sinful delight you guys.
What about the health nuts & vegetarians?
Gluten-free, Dairy-free, vegetarian, vegan friendly…Hell! The Hungry Herbivore team would probably chop up some gourmet air-free air for you.
This is the place that actually understands what Gluten is, and offers an array of options for those seeking Gluten-free or Gluten-full vegan grub.
“We aim to find the balance between health and comfort.”
The only thing said to be missing in a vegan diet, is Vitamin B12. Luckily, The Hungry Herbivore has a few fortified products like soya milks, which can get you that vitamin.
What of the drinks & booze?
If you’ve ever wondered what it would be like to live in a health-focused cosmopolitan city like Los Angeles or San Francisco, The Hungry Herbivore provides you with a glimpse of that life. I did not see a drop of booze in the whole premises, but Boy!Do they have a juice and coffee selection to quench your thirst.
Cold-pressed juices, specialty coffees, and smoothies are their forte. The hot chocolate with no sugar was….well, I didn’t hate it (usually I want syrupy sweetness) and the Sunshine juice I had after my meal, was invigorating and so saturated in fruity flavor.
The Hungry Herbivore get’s an all-round 8/10.
The Hungry Herbivore
11 Orphan Street, Cape Town, 8000
Tuesday – Saturday: 09h00 – 22h00
Tel: (+27)21 422 0347