Source: a long-overdue review! »
This is a review in several disjointed parts due to several factors, such as: many of us wanted to review it; and the person who called dibs really dropped the ball. But finally we consolidate the opinions of three Vegansauri. Enjoy!
Source claims to be “a multi-dimensional dining experience,” but I can’t verify that because I was adrift in a delicious lagoon of faux meat and cheese the entire time I was there. Also, how cute is it that the meat analogs are named after the noises the real animals make? Answer: SUPER-CUTE.
The waitstaff was really welcoming and eager to explain everything on the menu; everything can be made vegan! Music to my ears. The owner I met is super-friendly and possibly a bit overzealous, but WHO CARES because the food is delicious. While the friendly, sexy cashier (he totally was) explains the food to you, you can gaze into the mouth of the DRAGON’S FACE OVEN, in which Source makes all its pita, bread, and pizza crusts from scratch. No small feat.
Disappointingly (for me!) Source doesn’t not serve alcoholic beverages. What they do serve are kombucha-like elixirs made with a fermented substance called Jun. They are made with raw honey, which may or may not jive with you. They also serve raw yerba mate lemonades mixed with strawberry, blueberry, or straight-up lemon! My dining companion ordered the strawberry lemonade and OMG! It tasted like a strawberry daiquiri. So delicious, I was able to forgive the absence of rum.
I also noticed that my water glass kept refilling, as if by magic. Good service here, folks!
Let’s run down some of the food. After struggling to choose a dish on the extremely extensive menu, I went with an avocado oink bits burger, with the homemade cashew-based vegan mozzarella. I couldn’t believe my taste buds. I haven’t eaten a burger in over four years, and this is what I remember it tasting like. Their version is hearty, and even kind of has the look of a burger, thanks to the beets. But not in a gross way, I swear! This isn’t a Boca Burger-like substitution; it’s just, I don’t know, meaty. It’s obviously made with vegetables, yet has that grilled, burger-y taste. My omnivorous dining companion completely agreed: I wasn’t just being a crazy I-haven’t-eaten-meat-in-so-long-these-tofu-dogs-taste-like-the-real-thing-right vegan.
The cheese was so tasty, I wanted double the amount. The avocado and oink bits were a little lacking, but the burger was so delicious and MIND-BLOWING, I totally forgot what I had ordered and therefore didn’t even notice the other parts of my burger were shoved sparingly in the back of the pita. This is saying a lot, because I usually don’t forget things like avocado and vegan bacon.
More food: Buffalo cluck: spicy and saucy. Baked VEGAN spinach artichoke fondue: really on-point with the flavor, but the texture was chunkier than I would have liked.
Fries: super-interesting salt and sauce choices (rosemary salt with spicy BBQ ketchup? Hell yes). Bahn mi pita: Similar to the oink bits burger, the veggies and sauce had slipped to the bottom of the pita and broke the back of it, turning it into more of a salad; also, I wasn’t crazy about the chewier texture of the quack, but then again, I’ve never had real duck, so maybe it’s spot-on. Kraut bow-wow: Most food is made in-house, but the bow-wows are Field Roast apple sage sausages. Fine by me!
Philly cheese moo: OH MAN this is yummy, but I could stand a little more strength of flavor in the “cheese.” House salad: comes piled super-high on a tiny plate, really full-featured with a tangy dressing. Country shepherd’s pie: too brothy and bland, would not order again.
Cluck parm: This is the king of all sandwiches. It’s just so “cheesy” and tomatoey and crusty and GOOD. Get it, girl.
On to the desserts! Twinkees: YUM! Nothing like the Twinkies you remember, no: much richer, softer, and sweeter. It’s like angel food cake with canned icing, so good. Cupcakes: dependent on availability, but it was a pretty good, standard vegan chocolate-raspberry cupcake.
This Tuesday: Oprah goes vegan + SF viewing party! Be there! »
So, you’ve probably already heard but Oprah (WE LOVE OPRAH) and her staff are going vegan for a week and the show on Tuesday, February 1st at 4 p.m. (that’s TOMORROW!) is all about it. Rich, beautiful vegan Kathy Freston (check out her excellent interview in Vanity Fair!) is gonna be on the show talking up veganism and her new book, Veganist. Woo! In crappier news, Michael Pollan is also going to be there. He’s telling his fans to watch the show because he’s gonna talk about meat. Like, a lot. BECAUSE HE DOESN’T ALREADY DO THAT. Ugh, I really hope Freston can hold her own against Pollan and it’s not just 44 minutes of him mansplaining “humane meat and its environmental benefits.” Because, MURDER.
ANYHOO, that joyful vegan genius, Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, is hosting a viewing party at Harvey’s in the castro. Harvey’s has a crazy amount of vegan options on the menu based on CPG’s recipes and they’re offering 10% off the vegan dishes for the viewing party! Oh, snap! Their onion rings are vegan! That’s all I needed to know.
From the invite:
We’re asking folks to get there by 3:30 latest to settle in (we’re expecting a packed house) and prepare to watch the show at 4:00. You can order food during the show, but you’re also invited to stick around for dinner, FREE cookies (thanks to Eat Pastry), and a brief discussion afterward.
RSVP on Facebook and we’ll see you there!
[Image from Petfinder! Adopt!]