Thursday, February 22, 2007
I Am Full. Cafe Gratitude opened a week ago Monday on the miracle mile in San Rafael, and I took myself there for a refreshing lunch. The first cafe opened in San Francisco, and I've been wanting to go there since I heard of it. When I heard Cafe Gratitude was opening in Marin, I of course kept watch!
First off, the menu is large, and you have to read it through as none of the labels are recognizable, except as affirmations. Yes, everything is an I AM statement. The food is raw and uses a lot of sprouted nuts and grains. A very 'earth-mother' kind of atmosphere. Nourishing! On each table there is a bottle of water at the ready with some positive word labeling it -- mine was "Love". Think they are followers of Dr. Emoto's work following messages from water? As if love wasn't enough, I ordered an "I Am Aloha", fresh coconut water of Thai young coconuts. It was served in it's own ecological coconut shell with a hole drilled in it to insert a straw. I was advised to take the vessel home and crack it open to eat the meat after finishing the drink.
I had my "oh it's raw veggies so I'm going to starve" mindset in place, so I actually ordered too much. I started the food courses with the "I Am Bountiful". This dish consisted of "live" crustini – Four different toppings atop live toast. One of each of the following: Fresh tomato, basil, garlic; thinly sliced avocado with Himalayan crystal salt; Hemp seed pesto; Raw olive tapenade. I must have been in a really silly mood because when I read "live crustini" all I could picture was a "live crustacean- a lobster" being held over a pot. I'm sure it must have caused some scary vibes to reverberate around me. I kept trying not to giggle. But the crustini were quite good, and the live toast was made of some kind of sprouted nuts, so it was very filling.
Next up was "I Am Festive". This is Cafe Gratitude's take on 'taco salad', consisting of shredded romaine lettuce tossed in a creamy dressing topped with crumbled walnut-seed taco filling, guacamole, salsa, nacho cheese and green sprouts topped with flax chips. It was really quite good, I'd have it again in a heartbeat, but I was, well - "I Am Full", would be the best description at that point, so I didn't do it justice. There was a lot of love going around in that place too -- my waitperson kept patting my back and sliding her hand down my arm with positive words.
I really felt quite refreshed and more 'alive' somehow when I left. My waitperson also asked me the "question of the day" -- "How does your community support you?". My answer -- they are there for me. And thank you readers for being there with me!