Friday, April 9, 2010

TRUEBEN: Tempeh Reuben on Rye at The Green Sage (Asheville, NC)

Sorry for the bad photo--the Green Sage had a nice atmosphere but was admittedly a bit dimly lit.

Here, however, is a beautiful photo that I found on Flickr.

Though ultimately the tempeh reuben at Green Sage was nothing revelatory, after various veganization fails, I was grateful to finally sit down to this hearty and comforting, though familiar, vegan reuben.

Though the Green Sage is clearly very vegan friendly (as well as environmentally friendly, like most places in Asheville, with composting and bike delivery), you do need to request the reuben vegan. (I'm labeling it a trueben nonetheless because the vegan option is clearly indicated on the menu and easy to order). There are four side options, all vegan: regular fries, sweet potato fries, soup (they have a vegan vegetable lentil) and salad. We went for the salad, which you can tell from the picture, was pretty generous.

Though the website claims they are open late, and that the kitchen is open til close, I would call if coming for dinner. Our first attempt to go failed because I called ahead and the staff informed me the kitchen was closing shortly, well before 9 pm.

As for the sandwich, it includes tempeh, sauerkraut, russian dressing and a modest amount of avocado on a light caraway rye. B. thought the tempeh had a slightly mushroomy flavor. I definitely detected a lot of soy sauce in the marinade. Over all the sandwich was pretty well-balanced. The tempeh didn't overwhelm, but I might have liked a little more kraut.

Over all this is a solid sandwich, and if in Portland, we'd probably give it a 3.5. There are more exciting options in Asheville, to be sure, but I appreciated the easy veganization (including a clearly marked menu) and hearty portions at Green Sage. At the price (8 bucks) it seemed like a good deal, and avocado was subbed for cheese without any fuss. Also a nice local beer, Pisgah Pale, is to be had on tap. The Green Sage seems like a good spot for various dietary inclinations--the vegan breakfast menu looks great and they also offer omni as well as gluten free options. In the heart of downtown Asheville, it's a convenient spot for visitors, especially those of us who like to eat healthy, local and organic, to grab a bite.

The Green Sage
5 Broadway Street
Asheville, NC

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