For this week’s Tayla Tastes, I visited The Kindred Kitchen, a plant-based restaurant and smoothie bar in Richmond Hill for my very first vegan dining experience.
The Kindred Kitchen is the answer to the prayers of Port Elizabeth’s vegan community. While I’m not a vegan, I can only imagine what it must be like to walk into a restaurant knowing that you can order anything on the menu without having to substitute an ingredient, or order a selection of side dishes to make a meal.
Before I popped in at 14 Irvine Street in Richmond Hill – the home of The Kindred Kitchen – I did some research to find the answer to the question I’d been wondering for weeks: what is plant-based living?
Sounds silly, right? Of course plant-based living is all about eating lots of plants! But I wanted a better understanding of the concept, and found that The Kindred Kitchen offers a beautiful explanation of the concept and their vision for the restaurant and smoothie bar on their website.
Besides encouraging the local community to eat more plants, The Kindred Kitchen aims to challenge the way we see food by encouraging locals to educate themselves on what foods are good for us, and to make conscious choices about the food we eat and the impact our lifestyle has on the earth. For The Kindred Kitchen, it all boils down to the fact that the lifestyles we choose to lead really do make a difference, and our food choices (and changing the food we eat and where it is sourced from) can have an impact on our planet.
After exploring plant-based living and veganism, I was more determined than ever to try an entirely vegan breakfast.
Ordering breakfast was tougher than I thought it would be, as everything on the menu sounds wholesome and delicious!
To drink, I had a beetroot latte with almond milk. Those who have followed my blog and my blogging journey (particularly on Instagram) will know that I’m a coffee fanatic, so this was a big sacrifice for me! And I’ll be honest – my tastebuds were shocked and confused at the beginning, but by the end I was a beetroot latte convert. I didn’t add sugar to my latte, but after a while I realised that the drink was sweet – but not overwhelmingly sweet – thanks to the naturally sweet beetroot. And the almond milk? I don’t think I would have been able to taste the difference should I have opted for cow’s milk.
I was caught between ordering the Banana Bread Flapjacks and the Buckwheat and Beetroot Pancake, but in the end I chose the flapjacks. I was taken aback when a tower of pancakes surrounded by a colourful skirt of fruit was set before me, as this was way more than what I had expected to be treated to!
While I’m not opposed to a vegan lifestyle (and I have many vegan friends who have taught me all I need to know about veganism should I wish to adopt the lifestyle), I never thought I’d see myself visiting a vegan restaurant, for no reason besides the fact that it has never really appealed to me. Keeping this in mind, I never thought I’d say that I think The Kindred Kitchen is one of my new favourite local restaurants and – so far – my favourite Tayla Tastes contender.
If you are a skeptic, I’m appealing to you to open your heart, your mind, and your taste buds to plant-based living and veganism when you visit The Kindred Kitchen. You may find yourself pleasantly surprised!