LYFE Kitchen, the new healthy restaurant in the Chisca, opened yesterday. The deal with LYFE is that they serve no dish over 600 calories and are known for having plenty of options for vegetarians, vegans, and those preferring a gluten-free meal. I didn’t get in there for the opening yesterday, but with the rain we had tonight I saw an opening. “Surely the place won’t be too busy in this weather.”
Indeed it wasn’t. I got there about 5:45 and a server asked if I’d ever been to LYFE Kitchen before. I said I hadn’t and she steered me in the direction of Art’s Unfried Chicken, chicken with a side of a mixture of brussels sprouts, butternut squash, dried cranberries, a cashew cream sauce, and Dijon vinaigrette. It sounded appealing but I had already looked at the menu online, and I knew what I wanted. I was determined to get as far outside the box as I could at this place.
“I’ll have the kale Caesar salad, with an add-on of garlic lime tofu,” I told the cashier. He offered to make it gluten-free or vegan if I wanted, but I had my limits. I thought about saying “extra gluten” but I wasn’t sure if that was a real thing. I got a freshly-squeezed classic lemonade to drink.
They gave me a number to take to my table, and I looked around. One thing you might not know is that LYFE serves alcohol. They have a bar with two large flat-screen TVs, with local craft beer on tap and they can make fresh versions of most common cocktails.
Although they are still learning the registers, which is understandable given it is the second day, the service was great. No less than six different employees, including the GM, came up to me. They wanted to be sure I liked my food, and they let me know that if there was anything they could do for me, all I had to do was ask. I definitely felt welcomed there.
As for the salad, let’s just say I thought waaaaayyyyy outside the box ordering it. I’m not opposed to ordering vegetarian items, but usually they are not way too different from what I normally eat. I’ll get the Button Man (veggie slice) at Aldo’s Pizza Pies; a version of one of the burgers made with a veggie patty at Huey’s; the bean nachos at Maciel’s. The kale Caesar with tofu, though, was the exact opposite of my regular diet.
Don’t get me wrong – if you’re into that kind of thing I think you would enjoy it at LYFE. They used quality ingredients including cherry tomatoes, parmesan, broccoli, romaine, and baby kale. There was absolutely nothing wrong with my salad, and the addition of fresh cracked pepper (on every table) helped. It’s just that if anything, I learned that the next time I go to LYFE, I should stick to items more in line with my traditional diet. like the unfried chicken the server recommended, or the Farmhouse burger made with 100% grass-fed beef.
Give LYFE Kitchen a try; I think you will like it. If I had one minor criticism of the place, it would be that it was a bit too warm in there.It wasn’t unbearable but it was mid to upper 70s inside. I know it sounds ridiculous to turn on the air conditioner on February 2, but it was in the 60s and humid outside and the place would have been more enjoyable had it been cooled off a bit.
In the after-LYFE I walked north to Blind Bear and sat at the bar and watched basketball. I didn’t play Tuesday night poker because it would keep me up too late. Walking home, I stopped at City Market and looked in their grab & go. They had two chicken tenders with honey mustard for dipping for $3.49. If you want to have the best chicken tenders EVER, have them as a late-night snack after kale and tofu for dinner.
4 posts in one day. I guess that’s enough. Off to bed.