Saturday, November 13, 2010

True Food Kitchen

I get regular emails from Phoenix Children's Hospital because I'm on the "Miracles in Motion" team raising money by running the half marathon. And sometimes we get invited to do really cool things because of it. In this case, we got free dinner.

There is a new restaurant opening in Scottsdale called True Food Kitchen. And they had a practice night where we come eat their food for free so their servers and chefs can practice cooking and serving. When I called I asked about the menu, because of my dairy free status, and she said they had vegetarian and vegan menu choices. I figured a place called True Food Kitchen would be pretty accomodating. So, I booked it. It was when my mom would be visiting and we could call it a birthday celebration. They only had reservations left that were really early (5:30, 5:45) or really late (8:00 - 9:00), we booked ours at 8:15. I figured 1. Sadie could be bathed and jammied by then, and 2. since the restaurant is on the complete opposite side of town we'd have less traffic later at night. It ended up working out perfectly because Brian didn't even get home until after 6:00.

Sadie screamed the whole way there, totally stressed out my mom, but then she turned into an angel child and we didn't hear another peep out of her. She actually fell asleep while we were eating dessert and only woke up when put in the car. I think it helped that Daddy held her all evening. She can be such a good baby when she gets what she wants!

There were "rules" to our dining experience, but they were very generous. We all got to order a drink (we never order drinks, we usually just drink water. In fact we had to convince Brian to get a drink because it was free), and they had fun drinks they called "Natural Refreshments." Mine was matcha (the holy grail of green teas) and honey. My mom ordered one with ginger, agave with soda water, and Brian's had pineapple and orange juice mixed with coconut water. They were all very interesting (of course we passed them around) and very good!

Then, because we were a party of 3, we got to order 2 appetizers (something else we never order). We had a hard time agreeing, but settled on the hummus and the crudites...I think the thinking was that when the pita was gone, we could dip the veggies in the hummus. We were very impressed with both. The crudites were served to us like a bouquet in a jar with ice water, it was pretty neat.

Everybody was allowed to order 1 entree, of course, but they asked us to all please order something different. That wasn't hard. The food was unique, in a good way. It was healthy, minimal meat, mostly fish or chicken, sustainable and organic. I ordered some curry chicken with brown rice and veggies, Brian got a spaghetti squash casserole, and my mom got ramen with white prawns. The portion sizes weren't huge, which was nice because we had appetizers, but they weren't small either. We definitely didn't leave hungry, but we weren't overfull and bloated...and we even had dessert.

Dr. Weil was actually there when we were!! I get the impression this is how the restaurant balances their menu as well.

Dessert is definitely something we go without when dining out, but they allowed us to order one for the three of us to split. We had a hard time deciding because my mom doesn't eat fruit after noon, and I don't do dairy...we finally settled on the flourless chocolate cake, and got the ice cream on the side. It was the size of a ramikin, but just enough for the 3 of us to share. It was warm and gooey and rich and chocolatey, seriously the best thing I'd eaten all week...and it was vegan.

But the other dessert we almost got was made with olivello berries. We had read that they are the only restaurant in the nation to serve these berries, which are buckthorn seed we really wanted to taste them! Luckily our waitress was awesome, and when we couldn't resist the temptation of the chocolate cake, she offered to bring us a sample. It was pretty yummy, but I was glad we went with the cake!

Overall we really joined our experience, the service was friendly, the food was fantastic, and the atmosphere was comfortable (we ate outside under the heatlamps, it was pretty cozy). I would recommend True Food Kitchen if you have one near you, just for the experience of foods that truly are different.


  1. If I ever come to Phoenix, lets go there! This place sounds amazing...something we certainly don't have in the country in Ohio.

  2. If I promise we'll go, does that mean you'll come visit, Linds?