Thursday, October 15, 2009

Peacefood Cafe

We decided to go to the Peacefood Cafe on the way to Crafts on Columbus for a light breakfast, so that we could hit Cafe Blossom for dinner. I had read Peacefood's online menu, and although their lunch/dinner offerings looked tempting (chickpea fries!), I figured I'd check it out for a quick bite first, reserving the tried & true Cafe Blossom for a sure-fire meal with a carnie in tow.

Peacefood is spacious, clean, bright and pretty: very inviting, due in no small part to the baked goodies when you walk in that all look delectable. It is obvious that the place is already busy and popular; the staff is constantly buzzing around: juicing, chatting with customers, bringing out fresh platters of scones and cookies, etc. Unfortunately, their frazzledness (for lack of a better word) is quickly evident by the clueless stares of some of the more sedintary and unobservant waitstaff, and the lack of or mis-labeling of many of the bakery offerings. After finding out what everything was, we watched as our chosen biscuits and scones were delicately placed in individual, oven-safe, handled corningware- presumably for toasting. Yum. We seated ourselves and waited anxiously, all the while watching the steady stream of customers and the considerably varying level of deftness with which they were attended to, depending upon the server.

After quite some time we each received our beverages. The black coffee was fresh and hot, and served with a napkin between the cup and saucer to collect the drips; many fine restaurants don't know enough to do this. The almond milk hot chocolate was huge and chocolately, but disappointingly watery. The Brazilian Nut Chai was also huge, but unexpectedly watery as well and not as flavorful as I expected. Extra points for making their own nut milk, though.

Eventually we found that our beverages were cooling and we still hadn't received our eats. I asked the main man who seemed to have things under control and he said, "Oh yes, I put them somewhere. Let me think of where...oh yes, I know!", and returned shortly with the goods. Unfortunately, at first bite it was clear that the corningware was just a facade; these savory and sweet goodies had been nuked: ugh. Extremely disappointing since besides, the immistakable microwaved rubberiness, you could tell that goodies were good. The vegetable/rosemary scone was savory and flavorful, the cherry almond scone sweet and delicious, and the biscuit filled with chocolate, banana, and cherry was divine. Unfortunately, all suffered the cruel fate of having been microwaved. Most importantly though, I want you to know that we had purchased some scones to go and were shocked the next day to find that they were fresh and delicious: a day old and far superior to the nuked versions. I have since implored them to dispel with the nuking; they are doing themselves a severe disservice. Just in case, please make sure to request that your item is either served as-is or oven-warmed.

Next up was the requisite taste testing of the cookies and macaroons (we'll have to try the cakes another day; I wasn't in the mood to be disappointed by a cake not up to par with Vegan Treats). The chocolate chip cookie was good, but the one I got to go was even better because it was from the new platter; this is something to keep an eye on. We brought an assortment of choc chip and oatmeal raisin to omni friends we visited that day and they loved them. The chocolate covered macaroon was the best macaroon I've had in years. With a delicious, almondy taste, it had all of the good qualities of marzipan (flavor) without the bad (texture) in a perfectly moist, chewy, crispy outsided, half chocolate covered macaroon. We took six home.

Because it was a brunchy time of day on a Sunday we were able to see many of the lunch options go by: all looked very fresh, hearty, and delicious. Salads, sandwiches, and appetizers were equally inviting and I even heard someone describe the chickpea fries as "crispy on the outside, mashed potatoey on the inside". Eegads, that sounds good.

So, my only complaint besides the microwave business that is easily remedied, is that they seem a little disjointed. Some employees were completely welcoming, friendly, and in command, while others seemed a bit meek and not ready for the crowd. Meek is not good when it leads to an impatient woman grabbing her own scone (gross) from the covered platter when the staff is so careful to always use tongs and/or wax paper. This is especially bad when I wanted that same flavor scone and then had to fear being contaminated with rude cooties.

Overall it is an absolute wonderful place & I hope they continue to improve and succeed. The fact that their website doesn't list an email contact doesn't bode well for how heavily they weigh customer comments, but I hope not. I'm sure they are still working out the kinks and, judging by the steady stream of customers, they already have a following that will guarantee success.

So, go there, enjoy, and be sure to tell them you don't want your stuff microwaved. Also, get some treats for someone you like and ask them to tape a takeout menu to the unprinted box so that you can help to spread the vegan word. Meanwhile, I have my eye on those chickpea fries for my return visit.

1 comment:

Gar said...

I'm finally going to visit this restaurant this weekend. Hope the service would be available.