I’m so thankful to Phoenix Magazine. The writers/editors have this amazing way of keeping their finger on the pulse of what’s going on in all of the greater Phoenix area. Recently they had an article about the best neighborhoods in Phoenix. While our little neck of the woods didn’t make the list (that’s ok because it is perfect to me), the highly-sought-after Ahwatukee area did. I like Ahwatukee. I have nothing against Ahwatukee. But now I’m jealous of the charismatic, south-eastern part of Phoenix. Why? Because it is home to what is quickly becoming my new favorite restaurant, Pomegranate Cafe.
Ah Pomegranate Cafe, how I love thee. This is a restaurant fastened after my own heart. It is entirely vegetarian and any dish can be served vegan. When you live an inspired vegan life, you get quite used to going to traditional restaurants with friends and family and ordering some wimpy little concoction of hacked-together side dishes. So it is like walking into a dream when you can go to a restaurant and order anything on the menu! It feels so liberating. So inviting. So powerful.
On my first trip to Pomegranate Cafe, I used my super vegan power to order the tomato & basil pesto sandwich. It was delicious. Typically I’m leery of pesto … it’s made with mayonnaise and that’s just plain gross. Pomegranate Cafe assured me their fantastic pesto was not of the sort – no dairy, no cow suffering needed for my sandwich. The sandwich is made with ancient grain bread, basil pesto, tomato, avocado & greens. It comes with a fresh, yummy side salad and some chips.
I must say I was not disappointed in the slightest over my lunch selection but I couldn’t stop looking over my plate to my friend Adria’s. She ordered the raw collard wrap which looked like a giant burrito wrapped in leaves. Basically they take two large collard leaves and stuff them with carrot, avocado, tomato, and homemade almond cheese. It was a braver choice than mine. I’ve had almond cheese before – in one of New York City’s finest vegan restaurants – and I didn’t like it. But after sneaking a bite from Adria, I will definitely order the raw collard wrap on my next trip.
Lunch is such a fun time of the day when you get to meet with good friends and share good conversation. I’m grateful for the inspirational women in my life. But on this particular day I found myself feeling about equally as much gratitude for Pomegranate’s blueberry-peach cheese cake. It was THE MOST delectable cheesecake I’ve ever had. In fact I would happily go back there just for desert. And this was just one of many, many vegan deserts!
While my friends and I were lunching, a local farmer came in to drop off her produce. Eh? I say. You can actually meet the person who grows the food we eat at the restaurant? What a throwback! These days with all the food scares and strange foods trucked in from all parts of the planet, I take comfort in knowing that there are places committed to not only providing fabulous food but supporting the local economy around them.
Now who wouldn’t love a restaurant that makes you feel so good inside and out; one that leaves you feeling like you have vegan super powers! Check it out. You won’t be disappointed.
4025 East Chandler Boulevard, Phoenix, AZ
Phone: (480) 706-7472
Tuesday – Friday: 7 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Saturday – Sunday: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Serving: Breakfast & Lunch