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Rice Is Nice: Sipz Fusion Cafe

I'm not a vegetarian, but I do like vegetarian food. Well, for the most part. I tasted a Tofurkey once, and didn't care for it.

Anyway, I was walking past Sipz Fusion Cafe in North Park when I was enticed to go in and have a look at these:

Image

Once I was in the door, I was further seduced by the warm, fragrant aroma of steamed rice. It was a lovely, homey perfume.

Image

Here's a nice little treat - if you pay cash for any entree, Sipz comps you a mango green tea. It's delicious, almost like a mango nectar rather than tea with mango flavoring.

Sipz offerings are all vegetarian, most of the appetizers and entrees, and all desserts are vegan. Entrees can be ordered with all vegetables, tofu, or soy-based "chicken", "pork" or "fish". I'm suspicious of pretend meat (see the above Tofurkey comment), but I was curious.

Image

I ordered the Thai Curry "Chicken" ($7.95), which came with onions, eggplant, potatoes, mushrooms, carrots, green bell pepper, baby corn and bamboo shoots and a large helping of steamed white rice. You can have brown rice for $1.00 more. Those round nuggets of "chicken" look a lot like the real thing. They didn't taste like chicken, but had a smoky flavor and meaty texture that was very good, and picked up the savory, creamy coconut and green curry flavors of the sauce well. The fresh vegetables were lightly cooked and crisp, the potatoes softly melted into the curry sauce, and the rice was perfectly steamed. I didn't think that using canned mushrooms added to it, but they didn't really take anything away from it either.

Image

John's Kung Pao "Fish" ($7.95) had a similar veggie mix, sans potatoes, with a garlicky, spicy sauce and a shower of peanuts. The "fish" was thinly sliced soy and had a steaky texture that was reminiscent of swordfish. It had a nicely zippy edge without burning off your taste buds.

Image

Our dessert, vegan chocolate and red velvet cupcakes ($2.25 each), was delicious. I'm a firm believer in the use of butter in baked goods, and I didn't miss it at all in either of these. The chocolate cupcake was dense and rich, with deep cocoa flavor and a light, whippy frosting. The red velvet was moist and not too sweet, the "cream cheese" icing could easily pass for the real thing.

Image

If you've never tried vegetarian or vegan food before, Sipz Fusion Cafe is a great place to lose your vegan virginity.

Sipz Fusion Cafe

3914 30th St.

San Diego, CA 92104

(619) 795-2889

Hours:

Sunday - Thursday - 11 am - 9 pm

Friday -Saturday - 11 am - 11 pm

Street parking.

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Daily News Cafe: looks like a breakfast-all-day

In our search for new variations, we sometimes forget how good the originals are.

I'm not a vegetarian, but I do like vegetarian food. Well, for the most part. I tasted a Tofurkey once, and didn't care for it.

Anyway, I was walking past Sipz Fusion Cafe in North Park when I was enticed to go in and have a look at these:

Image

Once I was in the door, I was further seduced by the warm, fragrant aroma of steamed rice. It was a lovely, homey perfume.

Image

Here's a nice little treat - if you pay cash for any entree, Sipz comps you a mango green tea. It's delicious, almost like a mango nectar rather than tea with mango flavoring.

Sipz offerings are all vegetarian, most of the appetizers and entrees, and all desserts are vegan. Entrees can be ordered with all vegetables, tofu, or soy-based "chicken", "pork" or "fish". I'm suspicious of pretend meat (see the above Tofurkey comment), but I was curious.

Image

I ordered the Thai Curry "Chicken" ($7.95), which came with onions, eggplant, potatoes, mushrooms, carrots, green bell pepper, baby corn and bamboo shoots and a large helping of steamed white rice. You can have brown rice for $1.00 more. Those round nuggets of "chicken" look a lot like the real thing. They didn't taste like chicken, but had a smoky flavor and meaty texture that was very good, and picked up the savory, creamy coconut and green curry flavors of the sauce well. The fresh vegetables were lightly cooked and crisp, the potatoes softly melted into the curry sauce, and the rice was perfectly steamed. I didn't think that using canned mushrooms added to it, but they didn't really take anything away from it either.

Image

John's Kung Pao "Fish" ($7.95) had a similar veggie mix, sans potatoes, with a garlicky, spicy sauce and a shower of peanuts. The "fish" was thinly sliced soy and had a steaky texture that was reminiscent of swordfish. It had a nicely zippy edge without burning off your taste buds.

Image

Our dessert, vegan chocolate and red velvet cupcakes ($2.25 each), was delicious. I'm a firm believer in the use of butter in baked goods, and I didn't miss it at all in either of these. The chocolate cupcake was dense and rich, with deep cocoa flavor and a light, whippy frosting. The red velvet was moist and not too sweet, the "cream cheese" icing could easily pass for the real thing.

Image

If you've never tried vegetarian or vegan food before, Sipz Fusion Cafe is a great place to lose your vegan virginity.

Sipz Fusion Cafe

3914 30th St.

San Diego, CA 92104

(619) 795-2889

Hours:

Sunday - Thursday - 11 am - 9 pm

Friday -Saturday - 11 am - 11 pm

Street parking.

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4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
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