Despite enjoying making as much of my own healthy food as possible, I also love to explore and discover local restaurants that have similar healthy offerings to what I can whip up at home.
That's why I was looking forward to Ashley's Health Bar opening up in my neighbourhood. It's only a 7 minute drive from my house (yay!) and is one of the few vegan, vegetarian restaurants in my area. While I'm not vegan, it helps going to a restaurant where I can chose from anything on the menu and not have to make substitutions.
This past Friday, my father (not a vegetarian or a vegan) picked me up from the airport and we were looking for a place to go for dinner. I took the opportunity to suggest Ashley's, and fortunately for me, my dad is always up to try new things.
Let me start by saying, that before we even sat down I was in love with the place. The decor is my dream aesthetic. The dining room is an eclectic mix of hanging light bulbs, wood tables and floors, exposed brick and ceramic tile walls. I was hooked, and I hadn't even eaten yet!
**Believe it or not, this is the wallpaper in the washrooms!
We ordered a few different dishes to try, so that we could get a bit of a taste of everything. To start we shared an order of the Karmic Fries (which are actually just chickpea rounds) and my dad had the leak dumplings. I'm a huge french fry fan, so it was nice to be able to start off with a more guilt free version. The dish came with two different dipping sauces as well, which we quickly polished off both. Our waitress told us that the dumplings are a current fan favourite, and my dad definitely agreed.
For mains we had the Buddha's Nirvana and the Jungli Yogi Bowl. I'm always on the fence when it comes to curry, but the Buddha's Nirvana is made with a Korean curry which has a bit of a spicier finish than an Indian curry. The dish was a perfect kind of comfort food, without the heavy after feeling. My Yogi Bowl was delicious and refreshing, and came on a base of riced cauliflower which is perfect for me because I'm super sensitive to rice or noodles.
**Jungli Yogi Bowl. Featured image for the post are the fries and dumplings
What was really the icing on the cake (literally) is our waitress treated us to samples of the Ashley's Magic Brownie for dessert. The brownies are completed vegan, but you could never tell. They're rich and decadent and make the perfect ending to your meal, or a great snack to take home.
I can't wait to go back and try more off their menu! A definite must try if you're looking for a healthier meal choice, or even if you're looking to indulge but not feel the guilt of doing so.
Check out their Facebook page for location and menu;