THE GREEN SPOT
Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
Food style: fast counter service
Veg Scale: 100% vegetarian, many things can be made vegan or gluten free
Part of town: Downtown
***NOTE: The address on the website is outdated as this is their third location. The correct address is 1821 Hamilton Street as of the posting of this blog. They will eventually be moving across the street when construction is finished.***
After landing in Regina, Chris and I were starving and so headed downtown to try out The Green Spot. Known first as a coffee-roasting house, the café is set up in standard counter style service. Photos, paintings and other works from local artists line the walls and in the back is a small offset partition filled to the ceiling with countless varieties of international coffee beans ready to be ground in the nearby grinder. The only 100% vegetarian restaurant in Regina, there was still a sizeable line of dressed and pressed young professionals for a late lunch around 3pm. Though we ordered at the counter from a chalkboard menu above, our food was brought to us at the table by Sunshine, the sweet and friendly wife of the owner who started this establishment over 10 years ago. Though many of the items on the menu can be made either vegan OR gluten free, finding items that could satisfy both dietary requirements was more of a challenge, one that Sunshine was very helpful and generous in assisting with.
The baked goods are all made in-house and the Date Bar (GF) caught my eye so we started our meal off with dessert first! This streusel-like delight was the perfect balance of sweet and moist; the date paste a wonderful balance for the crumbly oat topping. A but too crumbly to eat on the go, however, as we learned later in the car during round 2 J If you’re craving a pastry or some other Dessert For Breakfast, this is definitely the way to go! It would pair perfectly with a morning coffee or tea latte.
We started the adult portion of the meal with a fresh green salad (GF). Comprised of red leaf lettuce, purple heirloom spinach, bitter arugula and other mixed greens, it was topped with fresh cherry tomatoes, warm toasted pecans, hemp seeds and tart dried cranberries needing nothing more to finish it off than the balsamic vinegar with which it came. Light and refreshing, it was a simple and perfect way to open up our palates to prepare for the meal to come.
Next up were our soup and rice combos. Chris opted for the Yellow Curry Soup (GF), which we unfortunately found to be rather watery. The veggies comprising the dish lacked much flavor and the peas were a bit mushy, but the potatoes and carrots were perfectly simmered. The broth, though I felt it could have used a bit more coconut cream for consistency, was very well seasoned and not overly spicy. From Sunshine’s recommendation we chose to partner the soup with the House-made Sticky Rice (GF), and what a wonderful recommendation it was! This restaurant special had that elusive umami flavor that would keep me ordering again and again. A compact cake of culinary artistry made of sticky white rice, bright green edamame, chopped up bits of savory shiitake mushrooms, cubes of steamed carrot and vegan ham, this was a simple but very satisfying addition.
I went for the Hot and Sour Soup (GF), a peppery, veggie-heavy mixture of crisp bamboo shoots, thinly sliced carrot sticks, soft tofu cubes, cylinders of some kind of faux mystery meat, strings of enoki and slices of shiitake mushrooms. This rich blend of exotic veggies was highly satisfying despite the similarly watery, but well spiced broth. I paired my soup with the Wild Rice Salad (GF), which was a cold, savory mixture of steamed long grain wild rice, toasted pecans, tiny bits of celery and chopped up figs lightly tossed with a uniquely seasoned olive oil blend.
For the sticky rice and the date bar alone, I would recommend a visit. Be sure to bring your laptop as they do have convenient wifi to use while you enjoy your dish alongside a warm brew of one of their exotic coffee offerings. Say hi to Sunshine for me!
I am an actor/writer/content creator based in Los Angeles. I travel extensively both as the host of the new vegan food travel show The Road Less Eaten and on my own. This blog will chronicle my journey around the globe as I hunt down all the vegan options in every part of the world, no matter how big the city nor small the town.
Copyright © Ally Iseman 2016. I own my awkward. Thanks for enabling me.