Monday, December 3, 2007

Eden's Vegetarian - Eclectic - Smithfield, NC

We saw this place on Happy Cow and thought we'd take a Sunday drive to check it out. The owner, Alex, who is originally from St. Lucia, and has been a vegetarian himself for about 30 years, is on a mission to create healty, vegetarian/vegan food that tastes great. Being located in Smithfield, his goals are admirable.

I highly reccomend a drive out to eat at this restaurant. It's not too far from the Triangle, it took us about 45 minutes from Cary. I suggest calling first, as his hours depend on the expected business that day, although he is open at the hours listed at the end of this post. He also does a Thanksgiving dinner for those who'd rather let someone else cook.

The restaurant is in a beautiful Victorian house and Alex and his wife were very friendly. It was a very intimate dining experience, as we were the only guests in there, but it gave us time to talk to Alex and learn more about his cooking and background. Before our meal was over, a large church group showed up - so he does not lack business, but being in Smithfield, I guess it's not the first place to eat on most people's minds.

My husband and I shared plates and tried some of everything. Alex featured 2 meals that day: Curry "chicken" and chickpeas with choice of sides or "BBQ ribs" with choice of sides. Sides were spinach brown rice, beans and rice, sweet potatoes, broccoli and carrots and collards and onions. Each person gets an entree, a rice, a vegetable and salad comes with the meal.

We also tried his vegetable soup as a starter and his homemade foccacia with garlic, sea salt and olives was delicious. He also made his own iced tea which had rosemary in it, which was also very good.

He warned us not to eat too fast or fill up too much on tea and bread and we assured him we wouldn't - but he was right, by the time our meal came we were stuffed halfway through and couldn't finish. I felt bad because he had created such a lovely meal for us and we were't able to take it to go. Next time we'll have to pace ourselves better. The meal was reasonably priced for all that food and wasn't more than around $12-$15 for each of us.

Granted, it's not a trendy nightspot or a place for a quick bite, but for a catered event, lazy Sunday meal with good friends or a romantic dinner, this place is perfect. The fact that this place exists at all, let alone Smithfield, NC is amazing. Please support his efforts to promote vegetarian lifestyle.

Eden's Vegetarian Dining
709 S 3rd St, Smithfield, NC 27577 (at Holt, inside the Dupree House)
Vegetarian, Vegan-friendly, Organic, International, Catering

Accept credit cards.
Open Tue-Fri lunch 11am-2pm
Sun 11am-7pm
Tue-Thur dinner 5:30-8:30pm by appointment only

1 comment:

Ben said...

Just got the chance to try out this place for the first last week and WOW - what a cool experirence. The chef was awesome, opening the place just for us and cooking just for us, talking to us, asking our opinion on the menu, giving us samples, etc. A very neat down to earth person. I would love to see this place relocate to Raleigh!