Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Vegan Tapas at Amada
It's no secret that I used to be a Garces Girl - That's because the Garces Empire is extremely vegetarian friendly. Since transitioning to vegan, well, let's say I haven't been to a single one of my old haunts. That's sad, right? Until last weekend.
I think Mr. Vedge was a little surprised when I suggested that we check out Amada for a post-movie drink and some eats at the bar.
Amada has always been my favorite Jose Garces restaurant. Back then, I found it quite easy to have a spectacular experience at the Old City tapas restaurant, and of course I enjoyed the interior and atmosphere more so than any of the other eye-appealing restaurants.
Of course we weren't expecting there to be a table available last minute on a Saturday. The bar is often our favorite place to dine because we love inspecting the liquor set-up and the bartender's technique.
The bartender is often the window to a restaurant's soul.
On this occasion, he was our Vegan MacGyver. He ran through the menu with us, letting us know which dishes could be prepared vegan or were already vegan, and the list was quite long. We were in good hands.
When a runner approached us with a plate of salad that had cheese on top, he sent her back before she could even get within feet of setting it down.
When another runner came by to drop off the side of goat cheese toast (for Josh, the vegetarian) to accompany a dish, he directed him to bring back a side of garlic toast without cheese for me.
He was also a really solid bartender, in case you were wondering.
So we dug in with starry eyes and here is what we ordered, vegan-style, at Amada:
Ensalada Verde (Green Salad with Asparagus, Favas, Avocado & Green Bean): Not your everyday pile of greens..
Garbanzos Con Espinacas (Chickpeas & Spinach): Smoked Paprika & Fried Chickpeas on top? Life is good.
Escalivada (Roasted Peppers & Eggplant, Cipollini Onions & Confit Tomato, served w toast): That little touch of pinenut butter was unforgettable.
Wild Mushrooms a la Plancha: That extra touch of truffle oil takes you away.
And there are even more Verduras items that can be prepared vegan as well, but I was already sold on what I wanted by that time. The five dishes were more than enough for us - Chickpeas and favas have serious staying power.
The closer? Our bill for 5 dishes was under $75, with 3 drinks and coffee.
Amada, you win me. I can already tell my Spring 2011 will involve copious amounts of sangria and Ensalada Verde. Allow me to extract my finest Espadrilles from the shoe closet.