41 Carmine Street, Greenwich Village
I hit up Urban Vegan Kitchen for my second lunch on the Thursday I was back in NYC post-Israel after my amazing friend, Christina, reached out to me to tell me she was working there and to come visit. Christina and I did yoga teacher training together during Summer 2016, and Christina is also the first person who told me about Dr. McDougall and ‘The Starch Solution’ during Summer 2015. She had seen my posts when I was traveling filming the documentary and looking for alternative healing therapies for Crohn’s Disease, and I was so appreciative she reached out but was so busy, so I wrote it down and put it in my back pocket. Little did I know that changing my diet and looking into McDougall and the many other doctors I follow now would literally change everything for me, giving me my life back. I am so grateful to Christina and having another compassionate vegan with me in my teacher training was incredible. Also, it’s funny to think about how we actually met, taking a cooking class my freshman year of high school, when we both were huge carnivores and would never dream of being vegan!
If you haven’t heard of UVK, I highly encourage you to read about it here. If you aren’t vegan for health reasons, this place is incredible. The owner, who also owns Blossom Du Jour (a very famous NYC vegan restaurant), made this place to show that all vegan food doesn’t have to be healthy and flavorless (though I definitely disagree with the idea that healthy food is flavorless: the food I eat is very healthy and extremely tasty), I obviously get the point of making southern food vegan to show non-vegans how good it can be. Christina, who also eats like I do, had them make me the ‘Urban Macro Bowl’ swapping out a few things. The bowl usually comes with “garlic mustard marinated tempeh, sautéed kale, herbed quinoa, arugula, roasted carrots, and creamy cashew beet dressing” but I got it with beans instead of tempeh, and instead of roasted carrots, kale. It was super simple and delicious, and I probably wouldn’t pay $18 for such a simple meal again. Still, the atmosphere and vibe were great, the people were so friendly, and I’d definitely go back to grab a drink at night. If you aren’t avoiding oil, this a definitely a great vegan place to check out (as that was the only reason my options were so limited).