One of the things I love the most about living in Victoria, are the many many MANY healthy eating options. There are just so many cafes, bakeries, healthy restaurants, and markets. Foodie heaven, for sure.
Macro Monday: Macrobiotics in Victoria
Restaurants & Cafes
I haven't even come close to trying all the Dainty Pig friendly places to eat...but here's a list of some of favourites so far. Rest assured there will be multiple followups to this post.
Kissako Green Tea Cafe
- A cute, small, family style cafe in Oak Bay. As the name suggests, you can get a mean cup of green tea here. I'm talking high quality Japanese Matcha, made properly...you know, so it isn't bitter, and froths perfectly.
- The food is great: straight up Japanese Macrobiotic food. I've tried the kinpira, miso udon, age dashi tofu, and veggie gyoza. All were the best versions of those foods that both T & I have ever tried, anywhere...even in Japan.
- They also have a substantial brown rice veggie sushi menu!
- They also have lovely desserts like green tea roll cakes & daifuku...which, if you're a red bean dessert fan like me, will be your remedy for Japanese food homesickness.
- Bonus: the place is very cute inside, and so are the owners -- they are very friendly!
- Another bonus: priced very fairly.
Rebar Modern Food Cafe
- Right in the heart of downtown, in Bastion Square, Rebar is a Victoria classic. Rebar has it all: plenty of vegetarian, vegan, and macro friendly options.
- I like it because you can get simple stuff like a basket of steamed veggies and brown rice with a side miso soup...or you can get all fancy with soba salads & green curries, or you can get your sweet comfort food like tempeh reubens and yam fries.
- Their vegetarian dishes are really great (so I've heard), with some of the best veggie burgers and miso gravy fries in town.
- They also have a great fresh juice selection, and they have chosen awesomely funny names for their juice creations - you'll have to visit to see for yourself.
- The atmosphere inside is funky, and also relaxing & chill. The price is a bit more than others on my list, but it's worth it.
- This gem is tucked away in the lower part of Market Square downtown.
- They are basically a vegan self-serve buffet (but highly Macrobiotic)-- with eat in or takeout options.
- The menu rotates daily (you can check before hand online) but there is always a couple of soups, cornbread, pickled veggies, salad options, steamed veggies, and tofu, seitan, or tempeh dishes. Often as well, are cold noodle salads like soba or Mediterranean pasta salads. There are usually stews and bean patties or falafels too. Toppings include gomaisho (sesame salt), and various oils like flax and olive oil, and seasonings like nutritional yeast and roasted pumpkin seeds.
- Then of course, is my favourite part about this lovely place: the treats. SO MANY wonderful treats to choose from, all are vegan, and most are Macrobiotic. This is like finding a needle in a haystack. Seriously, so lucky to have this place here for when the sweet craving strikes and I don't wanna bake. There are daily cakes -- often cheesecakes or mousse cakes, and fruit crumbles. But my favourites are the baked goodies, like the brown rice peanut butter cookies, or the oat & hemp seed bars. Their spelt blackberry muffins are great. And if you want a really decadent treat, try their brownies or their "not nanaimo" bars.
- Also a bonus, they make their own pickles, sauerkraut, tempeh, and amasake...you may have seen them before in larger chains like planet organic :)
Sakura Japanese Sushi & Restaurant
- A cute place tucked away on Yates street (right by The Market on Yates grocery store). It really reminds T & I of a homestyle country Japanese food.
- The menu has lots of different brown rice veggie rolls (all delicious), and various bento boxes and donburis. Along with the rolls, the miso is fantastic, and one of my favourite things to get is the ginger tofu & veggies donburi. Super yummy!
- Another bonus: free barley tea with your meal.
- Excellent, excellent Japanese food.
- They have many macro friendly options, including brown rice & delicious udon (which they import from Ehime, the prefecture where I lived for 2 years) which you can order with natto! but in all reality, their specialty is sushi, and they do it amazingly well! Probably the best sushi I've ever had.
- On the winter menu, you can order tofu veggie nabe (a wonderful hotpot) and it was so good!
- This place gets BUSY FAST...so make a reservation
- Right on Blanshard & Fort, downtown.
- Be Love just opened up recently, and we've been quite a few times!
- Really awesome space, cool design, friendly staff, and mouthwatering desserts.
- I would say the restaurant is definitely slanted more to the raw foods lifestyle (lots of juices, raw crackers and raw breads), but they definitely do have enough cooked food options that I can't stop going back.
- They have a macro bowl on the menu, made with quinoa, seaweed, lots of veggies, sauerkraut & flax oil -- it's delicious & I've also had an amazing polenta dish :)
- Their desserts are pretty insane...raw cheesecakes like no others!
- They also have some really neat drinks like Mu tea soda
- The price is mid-range. Similar or a little less than Rebar.
Fry's Red Wheat Bread
- Worth the trip out to Esquimalt in a heart beat, as it is definitely the best bread I've ever eaten. It doesn't hurt my belly...that's the most important thing...but it tastes phenomenal (also SUPER important!).
- All of their breads are fermented naturally aka natural sourdough...and they do it right! They use whole grains and the red wheat is very tasty!
- They have great special creations, like the time I was lucky enough to snag a wholegrain loaf that had kabocha in it!
- They make great breakfast breads too, with hazelnuts & raisins
- And for the treat lovers out there, their pastries look out of this world. Their german pretzels are soooo good too :)
- On Quadra street.
- These guys also do all natural sourdough bread, and they have lots of SPELT flour sourdough breads, which is pretty cool
- They have some awesome take-out sandwiches...or you can stay in and enjoy a coffee and a delicious vegan ginger blueberry spelt muffin or some toast made with your choice of bread.
- There are many vegan goodies to choose from (just ask) & I've been told that their absolutely stunning vegan chocolate cake is to die for.
- The granola they make is also super yum, with all turkish apricots, hazelnuts, and orange zest
- A really neat gem tucked away in Esquimalt
- Awesome design, and delicious organic bread (well, the one time I've tried it - I should go back soon!).
- They make some really good looking treats too - like macarons, & individual pastries and tarts.
- I've heard they make really great pizza too!
Ingredients & Groceries
Ingredients Health Food & Apple Cafe
- I stumbled into this place my mistake one time, and sure am happy about it! It's right downtown along the water on Store street, and is the bulk store of your dreams, combined with a cute cafe and a space where people can teach small groups classes
- The prices here are some of the best I've seen in the city!
- On Niagara street (you guessed it), in James bay.
- This was another lucky find on a walk a few months back.
- They have a great selection of everything: natural pickles, tofu, beans, organic veggies, nut/seed butters, jams/honey, milk alternatives, they carry Wildfire Bakery bread and other good breads, local ice creams, local vegan goodies, and plenty of organic chocolate, coffee and tea.
- They also have a coffeebar, and a few tables.
Local Neighbourhood Markets
- There are so many Markets here, it's a huge delight.
- In the summer & fall, I was visiting Moss Street Market every Saturday, and stocking up on GREAT veggies!
- There are markets all throughout the city, such as one in James Bay, Bastion Square...seriously, all over :)
- Same place as listed above...they also have a small grocery store attached where you can buy natto, soba, green tea, seaweed, organic miso, and other Japanese items!
The Market on Yates
- This grocery store has a surprisingly large selection of everything...you just need to dig a bit to find everything amongst regular items.
- You can find ume products, seaweed, and a large selection of tofu here.
- Also, there is a great coffee / tea section, along with lots of local chocolate.
- They also have a pretty good bulk selection, and many organic fruits and veggies.
- This is an amazing Italian market / cafe in Oak Bay.
- If you're from Edmonton and love/miss the Italian Centre...this is the closest I have yet to find something similar, here in Victoria.
- This would be the place for anything like olives, goat cheeses, olive oil, good quality pasta, chesnuts!!!, dried mushrooms etc.
- They also sell one of my favourite brands of tea: Kusmi tea.
Places On My Radar That I Plan to Check Out:
- This Japanese restaurant supposedly offers brown rice sushi, and gets great reviews
Victoria Public Market
- This public market at the Hudson, is relatively new, as far as I understand, and is inspired by the year-long indoor market at Granville Island in Vancouver
- I can't wait to check out the regular vendors, for veggies and other fantastic products.
- I was recommended to check here for many Japanese ingredients I have been searching for :)
***And also some places very worth noting that I plan to get some of photos of next time and do a write up for are: Soltice Cafe & Bliss Cafe <3
Any and all recommendations are much appreciated!
To your delicious dining when you visit this haven known as Victoria,