Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Pizza and Vegan Paparadelle

There are just some foods that never get old.

We've walked by Gather in Berkeley several times, we always make a mental note and then that mental note gets lost in oblivion and it's like Gather never existed.  But a recent craving for pizza and wine brought us back to this always-packed-vegan-friendly restaurant right near UC Berkeley.  

Yes, I did say "vegan friendly".  Ok, so I'm not the biggest fan of vegan food.  I've probably mentioned this more than enough times for you to get the picture but hey, if every vegan restaurant you went to slapped you with a $30 per person bill and you left still hungry and wanting a huge slab of cow, you wouldn't be a huge fan either.

Let's start with the pizza first and then I'll tell you the story of how two very carnivorous people ended up with a vegan pasta.

I'm a sucker for eggs, bacon, pizza, and funny looking foods that smell delicious.  Well then, I guess I just gave away all the shining details of Gather's Nepalese style pizza.

This was both Matt and my first time trying pizza with an egg on it.  We've definitely been meaning to either try it at a pizza place or make one ourselves but I'm almost certain that Gather has convinced us that as good as pizza is, it with out doubt is made better topped off with an egg baked right into the cheese and the sauce.  Normally, I'm a die-hard for thin crust pizzas.  I feel cheated when most of my pizza is dough and not toppings but this dough was amazing (that of course is minus the burnt parts)--it had the sweetness of well-made bread and it was light and airy.

Don't judge, but I even considered not finishing the pizza so that I could have it again for breakfast...that thought only lasted a brief second before I engulfed the final slice of pizza and walked out with the rest of the crust as we hurried to our car whose meter was about to run out.

Surely, this would have made an excellent breakfast.

So this is where the non-adventurous/ suckers for paparadelle get scammed: it was vegan.  I guess scammed is the wrong word to use since that usually implies that those who got scammed were not happy with the result, but we, on the other hand, were incredibly amazed and pleased with the outcome.

See vegan pasta means no eggs, and since pasta usually translates to dough made with eggs, the chef at Gather got creative and the "pasta" was actually strips of bean curd sheets cut into the shape of paparadelle.  Impressive, huh?  I am a huge fan of bean curd, and although the price was a little high for bean curd strips it was definitely a surprisingly good one time experience.  Not to mention the vegetable ragu was so flavorful that I forgot I was eating vegan.

If there was one thing I regret not trying at Gather it would be the squash blossoms.  The thing is though, if you regret not ordering something that regret will tend to steer you back in that restaurant's direction. So, I guess I'll be seeing you again very soon, Gather.  

No comments: