My Californian Adventures!
I’ve been lucky enough to spend most of the last month living in Venice beach, California and wow it’s been so amazing! California is beautiful, the weather is fantastic and I’ve met so many incredible people, all of which has made for a pretty happy month, but best of all – I ate the best food, I mean seriously, it was unbelievable. I’ve been so inspired by everything I’ve eaten and have come home with lots of awesome ideas to work on. It was just great being able to eat so well all the time. The range of plant based, gluten free options in every restaurant was crazy. I ate everything from pizza to ice cream, donuts and a million different types of cakes, cookies and pies – and guess what, they were all so healthy with no refined sugar, dairy, gluten etc! Who wouldn’t want to eat ice cream made with just organic coconut meat, organic coconut water and raw honey or enjoy donuts made with superfoods and topped with a cacao and coconut glaze?! Lots of my readers have been asking me to share my favourite places, so I’ve listed them all in this post I hope that they give you all lots of inspiration – even if you never go anywhere near California I’d recommend just checking out the menus online, these places alone have given me a million inspiration ideas!
So where were my favourite places? These five places were my favourite restaurants, there were so many other awesome places but these stuck out as the best for me!
– Cafe Gratitude: the menu at cafe gratitude is mind blowing, every options sounds ridiculously good and everything I tried was heavenly. The whole menu is plant based, organic and full of goodness. I especially loved their I am Whole bowl, which is made up of mashed sweet potato, adzuki beans, sautéed kale, housemade kim chee, sea palm, black sesame seed gomasio, teriyaki almonds, garlic tahini sauce and either local brown rice or quinoa – it tasted even better than it sounds too! They also have crazy desserts from a coconut cream pie with coconut custard, dark chocolate swirl, chocolate date crust to a key lime pie, crumble, rose cashew ice cream and chocolate truffles. If there’s one place you go when you visit LA then it really has to be gratitude, it’s healthy heaven!
– Gracias Madre: Gracias Madre is actually owned by the same people as Gratitude, so as you can imagine it’s totally awesome. It serves vegan mexican, which is pretty unbelievable – it may be my favourite type of food ever as there’s a lot of avocado involved! I only ate there once but it was one of the best meals I’ve ever had and we feasted on so many different dishes! Honestly everything was amazing and their guacamole was to die for. The interior is beautiful too and they have an incredible outdoor courtyard to eat in, plus I heard their margaritas are quite something!
– Ravolution: this is a really cute place in Santa Monica where I had breakfast a few times as they have the best breakfast burrito. As the name suggests everything is raw but you’d never know! They also have awesome juices and their main courses all looked delicious too.
– Axe: this is a really cool place on Abbot Kinney, it was also the first restaurant I visited when I came to LA a few years ago so it has happy memories. The food is all awesome, but I’m particularly obsessed with their basic bowl which is full of brown rice, bean sprouts, cucumber, shaved cabbage, carrots, fresh herbs and the most incredible peanut, sesame and lime dressing – so simple but so good!
– Malibu Farm Cafe: this is the most beautiful place that I think I’ve ever eaten a meal. It’s at the end of a pier in Malibu and overlooks the ocean. You can sit on tables on the roof or on a balcony so pretty much everyone looks straight out to sea. The food all comes from their local, organic farm and it tastes delicious. There aren’t lots of super healthy options but they make some great salads and the view alone is worth going for.
– Kippy’s Ice Cream: this place is pretty unreal, it’s a healthy ice cream parlour that uses just organic raw coconut cream, coconut water and raw honey to make the world’s best ice cream! Using these ingredients plus fresh organic berries, raw cacao, dates etc they manage to make the creamiest, sweetest ice cream in flavours like cookies and cream, chocolate chip or peanut butter crunch – it’s crazy! They even top your ice cream with an incredible coconut oil and cacao sauce and then you can sprinkle on toppings like dried mulberries, cacao nibs and bee pollen. Best dessert ever!
Of course there are also lots of incredible juice bars all over LA, which I loved! I tried lots of places but I had three favourites which I kept going back to.
– Moon Juice: moon juice is a very beautiful and uplifting place – there’s something very magical about it. You can really see and taste how much love and thought goes into all of their products. They make incredible organic, cold pressed juices in so many creative flavours, my favourite was the cucumber, pineapple and jalapeño juice, as well as wonderful smoothies. I fell in love with their green shake which is made of their goodness green juice plus frozen over-ripe banana and almonds, it was so sweet and creamy yet so green and nourishing. Plus they also have incredible snacks, from mini packets or dates and homemade nut butter to raw crackers and the best ever superfood donuts!
– Juice Served Here: this was one of my favourite places to work while I was there, I did a lot of great book writing in their Venice store! The design of the space is awesome, it’s so light and airy, and they have an awesome array of juices with over twenty different flavours to choose from. I especially loved their green mylk which is made of alkaline water, almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, spinach, romaine, kale, parsley, dates and vanilla bean. They also had a seasonal special, which was pretty spectacular – it was made of pomegranates and spices, which I loved, as well as an incredible pineapple. lemon, honey and cayenne blend.
– Pressed Juicery: I’d heard so much about this place before I went and I’ve followed them on instagram for ages, so I was really excited to check them out in person and they absolutely lived up to all my expectations! Their juices are unbelievably good and they have such a varied selection to choose from – I also love their packing, it’s so awesome. Of all the juices I tried I especially loved the coconut and rose water blend, it was so unique and refreshing, such a beautiful flavour. They also have an awesome range of green juices, which I loved – so nice to have seven different greens to choose from!
My other favourite place was the Yoga Collective, I know it’s not a food or juice place but I absolutely loved it so wanted to tell you all about it! I went almost everyday, normally first thing in the morning, and it was incredible. The teachers there are amazing and I’ve never loved yoga more then when I was practising there. If you’re ever in the area I’d so recommend checking it out, you should know it’s super sweaty though! It feels amazing to stretch and sweat everything out, but just thought I’d should warn you that it’s best to bring a towel to class!