Earlier this week, I mentioned that I had an exciting dinner planned this weekend– a 7-course RAW dinner at Mooi! While a 7-course raw meal is exciting enough, this dinner was extra special thanks to a visiting chef from Pure Food & Wine in NYC, Anne Lee, working along with executive chef of Mooi, Stephen Hauptfuhr. I’ve been chomping at the bit to try Pure Food & Wine, so this seemed like the closest I was going to get while here in Los Angeles!
Here was our menu for the evening:
I was so excited that it was an Italian-themed meal!! I love Italian food. I also loved Mooi’s eclectic decor! Every table was different, with an arrangement of unique chairs and dim lighting. (not great for food photography, but perfect for a date!) 😉
Our server started us off with glasses of cucumber-flavored water while we chatted away, and shortly later our first plate was served:
A duo of gazpacho, which was light and refreshing, served along with our second course– an antipasto salad with a green olive tapenade. The veggies were my favorite part of this plate! They were tender and marinated in some sort of tangy vinaigrette. I’m not a huge olive-fan, but I think olive lovers would have enjoyed the tapenade that was served along with them!
Our second plate was truly mind-blowing. The raw garlic bread was out of this world– moist and chewy, with a delightfully tangy, butter-like spread! I have no idea how they made this, but I’d eat it again and again! It was like REAL bread!! Equally as tasty was the mushroom caprese napoleon on a sun-dried tomato cracker. The cracker was perfect in texture– slightly crunchy and chewy, and bursting with flavor! The nut-cheese and marinated toppings were delicious, too! I would have been completely content with more of these two dishes as my whole dinner!
That is, before I tasted the raw lasagna…
Oh. My. Word. I had no idea raw lasagna could taste SO MUCH like the traditional version! This dish was served warm from the dehydrator– with a rich tomato sauce, a creamy macadamia “mozzarella,” spinach, and marinated mushrooms! I loved that the chefs used mushrooms instead of a nut-based meat. The mushrooms were meaty, without being heavy, and totally made the dish for me!! I practically licked my plate by the end.
At this point I was thinking, “Wait, we still get to eat more??” Wahoo!!
And up next? The course I always look forward to the most… dessert! 😀
We were served a slice of Chocolate Almond Zuccotto. There were three layers to this “cake”– a firm outer almond layer, a middle chocolate layer, and a soft, creamy middle that was absolutely delectable! My only complaint was that I wanted more of the tasty raspberry sauce! It was bright and perfectly sweetened! Again, I had to hold myself back from licking the plate.
All in all, this was a great dinner! Good company, good food, and all at an amazing price– only $25 for the 7-course meal!! (that’s a steal in the raw-food world!)
Needless to say, I’m already planning my next trip back to Mooi— I didn’t get a chance to taste their raw ice cream! We’re going to have to remedy that ASAP, don’t you think? 😉
Reader Feedback: Have you ever eaten at a raw restaurant? What’s the best thing you ate this weekend? I’m still dreaming of eating that raw lasagna again!! YUM.