Friday, 19 August 2011 17:50

Video: Being Vegan is a Breeze at Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles

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In April I was invited to try the new vegan menu at the beautiful Breeze restaurant, which is part of Hyatt's Century Plaza hotel in Los Angeles. Despite being on a strict anti-candida diet at the time, I thought it was worth going to have a few bites of the promising dishes. And it was well worth it! A handful of non-vegan food bloggers and I were presented with a private, upscale, 7-course vegan meal, and we all loved it.

I've been to Century Plaza several times - previous to the dinner I attend the Humane Society Genesis Awards where I enjoyed a delicious meal by renowned vegan chef Tal Ronnen. Turns out, Breeze's executive chef Manfred Lassahn was inspired by Tal's work at the award show a year earlier, thus the new menu. Lassahn wanted to provide delicious options for all guests of the hotel and restaurant, and he has absolutely succeeded.

Each piece of the gourmet California cuisine is made in-house (aside from the faux meat by Gardein) and the chef took the time to describe the process of making it all to his journalist guests. I actually learned a lot about how to make vegan cheese alternatives from cashews and macadamia nuts! Lassahn is a German trained traditional chef who is extremely passionate, which is quite evident in the quality of his food. I was extremely impressed with the nut cheeses - they were smooth yet thick, sweet, and very flavorful. His take on Gardein "Chicken" was outstanding and easily one of the best preparations in my experience - Tal taught him well!

There was also edamame hummus (subtle flavor), tofu ricotta (savory and full of probiotics), a risotto (tender, sour and creamy), and a nice quinoa. All of the vegetables used were extremely fresh and well seasoned, as the majority come from farmers markets. And of course, a dessert: the tiramisu was stunning and the flavor was so true to the traditional taste you would never suspect it was vegan.

The vegan options vary from lunch to dinner and from season to season, so be sure to check the menus on the website or give them a call before you get your hopes up about something specific. Lassahn suggests calling ahead to specially request the tiramisu - trust me, it's worth the extra effort. If you're on a special vegan diet, such as gluten-free, there are plenty of options. The menu prices range from $7-30. Luckily, valet is complimentary.

Curious what the other guests had to say? Here are some other reviews of the vegan menu at Breeze:
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