We're baa-aack!

And have we got something good for you!

It's true confessions time: 
     - True Confession: It has been way too long since we posted
     - True Confession: I can't even count how many recipes have been 
       photographed to post on here, and now those photos are just 
       sitting on the camera.
     - True Confession: We're really going to try our best to be better. 

With all of that out of the way, I thought we'd celebrate the end of our hiatus with a very special restaurant review. As many of you know, we love Sage Vegan Bistro in Echo Park. It is our go-to restaurant for birthdays, brunch, and special occasions. 

True Confession: Once we found out Sage was opening a new location in Culver City, I started stalking them via every form of social media I could. Were they open? Were they not? How was VegansOfIG able to plan a meet-up there when I thought the official opening was a week later?! The posts were tantalizing - 24 flavors of KindKreme, new pretzels with dipping sauces, a beer garden?! Needless to say, we've been counting the days until our first visit!



Once I saw this post on Facebook yesterday, I knew we had to get there. Even though Jen and Alden turned us down for happy hour post work (though I tried my best to guilt them into it), Rick and I headed out for reverse happy hour, arriving at around 10pm. 

We were immediately blown away by the new space--we turned in to the parking lot off of Selpulveda, and the lights, trees, and outdoor beer garden were immediately welcoming. If you have been to the restaurant in Echo Park, you know that things can get a bit cramped. Not the case in Culver City--there is plenty of seating, both inside and out. The decor is an eclectic mix of materials like raw cement blocks, painted wooden boards, pallets, and rugs like these to soften up the bench seating outside. 



                      

We settled on seats outside, under the olive trees and were greeted by the owner and creative force behind Sage and KindKreme, Mollie Engelhart. I was unashamed to admit to my cyber-stalking, and we explained how excited we were to finally be at the new location!



The beer garden is a great feature at the Culver City location. There are a number of beers on tap (some of which are gluten free!) and a number of new cocktails have debuted as well! We were probably most excited over the soft pretzels, and we have eagerly anticipated trying one since hearing about them over the summer. Once our drinks were in hand (an Eel River IPA for Rick and Julian's Hard Cider for me), we were ready to dig in! 


Yes, it was as amazing as it looks.
The pretzel definitely lived up to the hype--it was warm, buttery, crispy on the outside, and doughy on the inside. It is served with nacho cheese (the orange dip on the left), habanero cream cheese (middle), and our favorite, the maple mustard (golden, on right). The portion was just right, and having two separate pretzels made this an easy dish to split. Though we've heard there's been some grumbling about price ($9.95 for what you see pictured), we can't imagine not ordering one every time we go! Our waiter made a point to ask us what we thought about the portion size and we let him know we thought the dish was fantastic. 

We followed up with a BLTA pizza and ended up taking two slices home after filling up on the pretzels. The pizza was a perfect blend of flavors, with a good balance of bacon, heirloom tomatoes, pesto, ranch, and lettuce. Totally delicious. 





Usually a trip to Sage ends with an ice cream sandwich or a milk shake, but last night we were just too full. I did manage to get a few samples to help tide me over until next time :) 


As we were leaving, Mollie stopped by again to ask what we thought. I raved, of course, and we assured her we will be back soon! The friendliness of the staff and atmosphere were the icing on the cake last night. A great example of wonderful customer service! 

Rick's Review: The new restaurant is so much better than the original.  This is truly a place where I would just show up and work from my computer for hours and enjoy all the food at the same time.  Completely hooked.

Restaurant Recap~

We dined at - Sage Vegan Bistro

Location - Culver City, CA

Favorite Dish - Soft pretzel, hands down!

Unexpected perk - Chatting with the staff and trying only new dishes, which can be a challenge for us on a typical Sage visit!

Overall Rating - 5 out of 5!

Here's to you, for taking the time to read our blog! It means so much to us, and we promise to be more active in the future. 

--E&R




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