Home Sweet Home



Hello from NYC, everyone!

My time here so far has been a busy mix of schoolwork (sadly, lab reports don’t take Thanksgiving holidays), seeing my closest friends, time with my mother, and catching up on desperately needed sleep. Throughout all of this, I have been eating my heart out, because my access to NYC vegan dining is no longer constant, and I like to take serious advantage when I’m here.

My NYC restaurant tour began on Thanksgiving night, with a holiday meal at Josie’s on the Upper West. I wish I could show you the excellent food I ate: (a roast beet salad, a sweet potato and chickpea dip with vegan cornbread, and for my entrée, a lentil, seitan, and sweet potato loaf with sauteed bok choy. This gets points for being the only seitan I’ve ever eaten that didn’t make me bloated. (Excuse the TMI.) I was a big, big fan.

But the highlight so far has definitely been my meal at Peacefood Cafe last night. Peacefood is the Upper West Side’s newest vegan restaurant, and if you ask me, it is also its coziest and cutest.



I love countless dishes at Peacefood, but highlights for me are the kabocha squash, the kabocha sandwich with sprouts, the tahini sprout sandwich, the raw sushi rolls, and the “fluffy quinoa salad” with white beans and arugula. I also enjoy the juices and smoothies, and my mother is borderline obsessed with the macaroons!

I started my meal with two of the veggie side dishes: Japanese pumpkin (of course) and roast brussels sprouts (apparently my vegan stuffing has not fully satisfied my sprout cravings).

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Determined to stuff myself, I also decided to explore Peacefood’s new offering of raw entrees! I am so thrilled that they’ve expanded their raw menu, all with the help of the generous and friendly new raw chef, Kai. I opted for lasagna, and I loved it!

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Most raw lasagna I’ve had is really a vegetable carpaccio with nut cheese; this one actually feels like lasagna! The layers are thick, the marinara is very authentic, and the pesto was perfectly seasoned:

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I was so impressed! It’s fantastic to know that a local eatery (well OK, it’s not exactly local, but I consider myself a part time Upper West Sider!) is now carrying great raw dining options. Also on the menu are a raw spaghtetti with cream sauce, raw nori rolls, raw crackers and sunflower seed dip, and raw pizza with buckwheat, quinoa, and sweet potato crust (I’m trying that next; curious to see how it stacks up to Café Green’s).

As an added bonus, I got to chat with Kai, who is incredibly sweet.

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What a fantastic dining experience (so good, that I returned for lunch+juice today). I’m excited to spend more time at Peacefood over winter break. Along with so many other spots!

But here’s what really makes me love being home. Waking up in the morning to fully loaded coffee maker, a spoon and my very favorite Statue of Liberty mug, a note from my Mom that says “coffee is ready!” It’s the little things.

Happy weekend, everyone.


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  1. I love Peacefood Cafe!! I live nearby, so I’m constantly tempted to go there. When I’m in the mood for a sweet treat, their vegan chocolate chip cookies and chocolate macaroons hit the spot perfectly!

  2. Welcome back…although I’m a little late since you are probably back in DC by now!

    I had a great butternut squash soup at Josie’s that I adored recently. I’m not sure if it’s still on the menu but it had a mint chutney with it which was unexpected but really delicious.

  3. Sounds like you had an awesome time! I miss Peacefood, I worked there for over a year and a half, now I’m at Pure Food & Wine. I think I’ve seen you at PFC in the past though, you look so familiar.
    I love your awesome blog : )

    • Jenne,

      You look familiar, too, and indeed I’m pretty sure I recognize you from Peace Food! Thanks for reading my blog. I’ll be at Pure often this winter over my vacation, so I’ll say hi if I see you (and please do the same :))


  4. You’re most recent NYC posts are getting me excited for my trip next week! I love Peacefood and Candle Cafe. This trip we are trying Candle 79 (finally) but I’m not sure where else we will dine yet hmmm

  5. Aww, what a lovely weekend. I have yet to make it to Josies, but I have been delighted to dine at Peacefood, twice since moving to NY in august. Although now that I’m moving to the UWS in a few days, I know I’ll be a much more frequent diner. I met Kai last time, and he really was great! He had us sample his acai smoothie, which tasted delicious.

    I’m so glad you were able to enjoy all the comforts of home, even if only for a few days! (And secretly, I must admit that I always hope to run into you when you’re in NYC.).

  6. Sounds like you’re taking full advantage of being back in NYC–it’s interesting to me that you still consider it as ‘home.’

    Glad you’re having a good time, and enjoying yourself so well.

  7. wow all that food looks delicious, i am envy you and the food. I am going to have to get out to nyc and check out those resturant’s one day.

  8. i decided i should go to NYC next thankgiving and get a vegan Gf thanksgiving meal made for me. why not? glad you are enjoying yourself.

  9. Ahh………New York is the best for everything Vegan. Everything is close together and you have it all, a zillion yoga, raw, organic, every type of cuisine……….our fave thing about the city!

  10. When I was home in the U.S. for a couple short weeks in the fall, I made a pilgrimage to Peacefood Cafe during a stop-off in NYC. Thanks to you, Gena, I had the BEST meal of my entire trip. My husband and I shared the kabocha sandwich and the fluffy quinoa salad, but I wish I had had more dining companions (or more meals in NYC) to try more dishes because I really could have eaten my way through the entire menu. We ended our meal with a decadent carrot cake that was easily the best carrot cake I have ever had. I think it alone could convert non-vegans.

  11. Isn’t being home just awesome? I think the only thing that could make it better for me would be such a selection of vegan restaurants! I had a raw lasagna at plum Bistro in Seattle with a phenomenal walnut pesto. Enjoy the rest of your trip, can’t wait to hear more.

  12. I am so glad to see that you are home and enjoying life. That food looked amazing, My Baby Sister would DIE for that meal!

  13. You’ve sold me – I’m adding Peacefood to my list of restaurants to visit the next time I’m in NYC. The food looks and sounds wonderful.

    Enjoy the rest of your time at home. 🙂

  14. I’m going to keep an eye out for you. I’m at Peacefood often. It’s my neighborhood too. In fact I must have just missed you there today! Also, did you see that across the street from Peacefood there’s a new Organic Avenue on its easy? More options for juice and raw dishes to go. I’m very excited.

  15. That raw lasagna looks incredible! Peacefood is definitely going on my list of places to visit when/if I ever get to do my vegan walking tour of NYC.

    Enjoy the rest of your time at home!

  16. Oh I’m so jealous of your thanksgiving eats! And that lasagna looks incredible. I wonder how they made it thick like that…the one where I work is much more like what they feature in the raw cookbooks, haha.

    I made a a marble raw vegan pie for T-Day and everyone loved it!

  17. I love the looks of Peacefood…it reminds me of a few places in San Diego…mellow, chill, eclectic but they don’t have Kai. Cute pics of you two!

    The kabocha squash and that lasagna look perfect. But not as perfect as having your mom brew you a cup of coffee…I know you’ve talked about being at home with her before and how you love it and the times you two share…glad you have this weekend with your friends & fam to recharge your batteries.

  18. Sounds like you are taking full advantage of being home–as you should! Peacefood will be on my list next trip, obviously. 😉 Enjoy the time with Mom, friends & Liberty coffee! 😀