JHB // The Greenside Cafe
Kyla and I very rarely get to eat together. And when we do we eat properly. We generally roll out of whatever long-deliberated, very special and, quite frankly, lucky establishment stuffed full and happy. We choose our occasional restaurants very carefully to ensure that the experience is memorable and, more importantly, our food-obessessed selves leave feeling satisfied.
Kyla is one of the few friends of mine who can eat as much as I can – and let me tell you, it is a LOT. This Saturday (20 June – delayed posting due to large amounts of stress at the office :) …) we had planned our day down to the minute. Workout session at Virgin Active Victory Park – where Kyla drill-sergent-ed me till I could barely walk, then post-workout feast at Conscious 108 in Greenside. We arrive at Conscious at about 10am STARVED. And it was closed. WHO ONLY OPENS FOR LUNCH & DINNER !? BREAKFAST IS THE MOST IMPORTANT MEAL OF THE DAY?? Lucky for us the Greenside Cafe was just around the corner so we raced over there and promptly began ordering everything on the menu.
*Side note: For those who follow my life / health / eating stories. I had blood tests done a while ago, and *surprise surprise* I am allergic to dairy, eggs, black pepper (I know – please keep me in your thoughts as I am still mourning my loss), and gluten (knew that too) – and in that order. Try ordering a breakfast out somewhere that has no eggs, milk or wheat in it….? Vegan. That’s my future. Well, for breakfast in any case. EGGS. I could just cry at the thought of no more poached, fried, scrambled, boiled or baked eggs! I am now on the hunt for decent vegan/veggie breakfast spots around town – so please shout if you know of good places :)
Back to the topic at hand. Greenside Cafe smoothies. If they opened earlier, and were closer to the office, I would probably get one on my way in to work every day. Which would be bad for my bank balance.
I ate the veggie burger on a gluten-free bun, along with all the delicious vegetable sides you can think of! SO GOOD. I think my main takeaway from this and my main message to you guys is that vegan & vegetarian food is delicious. And I am a real believer in “Meat-Free-Mondays” if you aren’t a full on veggie. So for your meat-free day, this is a great spot to eat.
So I am not vegan, not by a long shot, but there is a lot that I respect and take home from the vegan lifestyle principles. For example, they focus on cruelty-free food from sustainable sources, I totally agree with that. Also, things like food quality, local production, organic farming (when possible) are important; as they are to me. Living 100% plant-based is not quite for me at present, but I always try to focus on plant-based snacks and meals. I am into meat-free Mondays, but need to get more strict with myself about it; and in that way I feel I am helping the planet along a miniscule amount more. If everyone did meat-free Mondays, obviously this would help loads more! I mean no offence when I say, “I would totally be vegan if they let me eat meat” (joke). So, without going into the greater Vegan philosophical debate (we will be here for a while :) ), let’s chat about Green Side Cafe.
Lexi and I went for a vegan breakfast here after a good workout, so we were hungry! I had the full English and the David Wolf smoothie. Basically it was incredible. Also, scrambled tofu with a hint of curry flavour is a thing. Or it should be! The breakfast was filling, full of variety and colour, fresh, well-seasoned and I would 100% order it again. My smoothie was super-satisfying, and I needed the coconut water in it after the sweat-session before; but maybe could have been a touch less sweet. I really wanted to try the vegan ice-cream with berry coulis, but had zero stomach space (next time)!
The service was a bit slow, it must be said, and the decor could be updated a bit, but the vibe was relaxed and the food amazing. If you want a great meal, take your vegan mates, take your omnivores and tell them they really won’t miss the meat, also, a vegan meal won’t kill them.
Find them at: 34 Gleneagles Road, Greenside // 011 646 3444 // www.thegreensidecafe.co.za