Back when I was still living in Halifax (over a decade ago), there was only one Thai and two Indian restaurants. A few vegetarian restaurants had started to pop up, but only on the fringe. Things have certainly changed a lot since then. Now, my hometown of Halifax has a fully vegan restaurant! (In fact, since the time of writing this blog there are now several!)
I just happened to stumble upon this vegan resto one day after leaving the Lion and Bright café on Agricola street. There it was on the corner with a cool new sign adorning three full-length windows at the front that read enVie A Vegan Kitchen. Whaaaaa? A vegan kitchen, you say? I had to go in.
Gone are the eclectic, grungy vegetarian vibes of years past.This place feels like any cozy, full-service restaurant. For lack of a better description, it doesn’t feel vegan. Envie has a cool and relaxed vibe; subtle and understated neutral colours with lots of reclaimed wood details. I was in love. They even sell the elusive veggie spiralizer on their product shelf at the front for any of you Haligonians who are looking to get your hands on one.
The menu was filled with mouth-watering selections like buffalo risotto cake, a Morroccan chickpea bowl and even included a vegan poutine made with charred leek and pepper gravy and housemade cheese curds (which I have to assume are made with some sort of nut cheese). As a mostly dairy-free flexitarian, I end up eating vegan lots of the time, so it’s really great to find a vegan restaurant where I don’t feel restricted by the menu. I decided it was time for lunch.
I have to admit I’m a sucker for a Ruben sandwich. Back in the day, it used to be one of my favourites. But, low and behold, didn’t enVie have a vegan Ruben sandwich just for me??? Hello sauerkraut!
The nut gruyere cheese was amazing and the sammy was loaded with said sauerkraut (a great way to get some good bacteria action happening in my gut. BONUS!) and a fantastic grainy mustard. Plus, it came with a side of pretty kick-ass kale caesar salad. And there it was. An unexpected lunch at a welcome addition to the Agricola Street Strip. Nice work EnVie!