Cafe Gratitude, LA

Being a vegetarian
requires a little bit more advanced planning on my part when it comes to going
out to eat. Although I’m not picky and I can almost always find something
wherever I go (there’s always buttered noodles) there are definitely places
that are better than others. Café
 which I was lucky enough to visit when I was in LA
(also locations in Venice, Berkley and Santa Cruz) has become one of my

This cute little
place serves completely local, organic vegan food, and every dish is named as
an affirmation.

For starters, K. and
I split the “I Am Present,” bruschetta on sesame bread with pear and macadamia

I had “I Am Whole,” a
macrobiotic bowl jam packed with sea veggies, squash, kim chee, sea whip, kale
and adzuki beans.

had the terrific “I Am Terrific,” kelp noodles in almond thai dressing. (I
didn’t grab a photo, although you can see it behind mine, but you can see it on her Instagram page here.)

I know that many of
my friends shudder when I describe meals such as these to them, but I can tell
you, this is my second favorite vegan place in the world (the
first being Manna, which is in London).

I can’t decide whether
the coolest part was a celeb sighting,
or having the affirmation my dish was named after repeated to me when my food
was delivered. It was quite nice hearing, “You are whole” from the waiter.

If this post makes
you hungry, you can find monthly recipes Café Gratitude whips up here.

What do you think of
vegan food? Will you give these recipes (or the restaurant, if you’re in
California) a try?


  1. Lena

    The food sounds good, but I think that I'd feel awkward hearing those affirmations from the waiter. I think that, for me, I would rather hear them from a friend, family, or professor – someone who knows me and from whom those words would carry meaning.

    1. Khaleelah Jones

      I think you're right when it comes to "affirmations" such as "you are smart" or "you are unique," because those would seem empty coming from someone I don't know. However, something like, "you are whole" or "you are pure" is nice to hear from anyone, and I wouldn't feel as if they were just paying lip service, because everyone is whole and pure (even if you have to dig to see it!).

  2. Anonymous

    Some great pictures! Those foods look delicious.

    Thanks for telling me about Cafe Gratitude, if I go to LA I may visit the store.

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