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EST. 2011 BY LIZ RUEVEN
Vegan Temptations by CHLOE.

Vegan Temptations by CHLOE.

An omnivore, a kosher keeper and a vegan grad student met for lunch at by CHLOE. on Bleecker St. in NYC on a balmy late Autumn day. Together, we waded through the hipster crowd to savor, critique, and agree that we loved almost everything we tasted at this hotter than hot vegan cafe.

The dishes were so tasty and the variety so enticing, that by CHLOE. just might convince any remaining naysayers that vegans DO indeed, cook and eat well.

Image courtesy of by CHLOE.
Image courtesy of by CHLOE.

At the heart of by CHLOE. is Chloe Coscarelli, 28 year old dynamo, with a sparkling smile and a passion for all things adorable (that logo! those hand drawings on the menu! the cute verbiage on the menu: “kale us maybe!”).

I knew that Chef Chloe’s sunny spirit and the vibe of her first cafe are perfectly in synch after spending midday eating a smattering of her offerings in SOHO. Later that evening I was thoroughly entertained listening to Chloe as she demo’ed a five course feast at DeGustibus Cooking School to a sellout crowd of adoring fans.

And yes, I am now one of them.

 

image courtesy of by CHLOE.
image courtesy of by CHLOE.

Chloe hails from L.A. and has been a vegetarian since elementary school. She veganized her choices in college where she studied biology at Berkeley before arriving in NYC and working her way through the Natural Gourmet Institute’s rigorous cooking program.

 Chloe wow’ed the judges in Cupcake Wars’ first season (2009) winning an episode of the TV competition with three all vegan cupcakes: raspberry tiramisu, chocolate strawberry shortcake and dark chocolate topped with dipped orange peel. She managed to surprise them even more so by having forgotten to let them know that she would be baking without butter, eggs or milk.

by CHLOE.’s menu is an approachable mix of a few familiar vegan favorites (Kale Caesar) and other less expected creations like saucy Pesto Meatballs loaded into a house-made potato sub roll. All have Chloe’s imprint of house-made on them, be it the almond parmigiana slathered on the Smashed Avocado Toast or the shitake bacon crumbled atop the sweet potato cheese sauce in the creamy Mac N’ Cheese.

Image courtesy of by CHLOE.
Image courtesy of by CHLOE.

 

The cafe menu was two years in the making and Chloe intended it to be as satisfying and delicious for those who aren’t vegan as for those who adhere to the dairy- free, egg-free, vegetarian tenets. While working with one of her recipe testers, who is kosher, she realized that her dairy free, meat free dishes were great candidates for a kosher certification (see specifics below).

by CHLOE. is a friendly kind of place, with customers placing their orders at the front counter (there are those award winning cupcakes!) and waiting to nab a seat at the long banquet lining one wall, at a communal table in the center or out on the sidewalk where an additional 12 can be seated.

Be prepared for crowds. The line can often snake out the front door.

 

Image courtesy of by CHLOE.
Image courtesy of by CHLOE.

Once we were seated, we all loved the Guac Burger so much that we agreed to meet again just for another chance to enjoy this scrumptious creation. We immersed ourselves in the perfectly textured black bean, quinoa, sweet potato patty loaded with corn salsa, plenty of guacamole, sloppy chipotle aioli and crunchy tortilla strips, somehow all loaded into a whole grain bun.

Click here for by CHLOE.’s  veggie burger recipe!

We were split on the Pesto Meatballs, mostly due to the soft texture of the portobello and veggie mix slathered in cashew mozzarella and almond parmigiana. It’s been a long time since I remembered meatball subs I loved from the Italian delis in White Plains (BK- Before Kosher).  Chloe’s meatballs felt a little like those. I liked the sloppy mess oozing from the potato sub roll. Somehow they felt nostalgic in a great way.

 

Image courtesy of by CHLOE.
Image courtesy of by CHLOE.

The Quinoa Taco Salad was a generous mound of spicy seitan chorizo with black beans, sweet corn, avocado, tomato and tortilla chips nestled under a shower of pepitas, crema and agave-lime dressing. The portion was generous and satisfying with lots of contrasting sweet and heat.

 

Image courtesy of by CHLOE.
Image courtesy of by CHLOE.

Our group was unanimously disappointed with the Mac N’ Cheese although we all loved the salty, charred strips of crispy shitake bacon heaped on top. The pasta was cooked to al dente perfection (quite the feat considering the huge crowd that had amassed while we were taking our time at the table) but the sweet potato-cheese sauce was overly sweet for all of us.

 

Brunch is served on the weekends from opening til 4 PM. I would gladly wait on line for the Early Bird with scrambled tofu, maple sausage and spinach. Morning Oats are sure to fuel lucky diners who dip into large bowls of quinoa, flaxseed, steel cut oats, fresh berries and options to add raw almond butter, banana, pure maple syrup and raw cacao.

 

Juices are cold pressed veggie and fruit based. All sweets are baked in house and tantalize every customer who approaches the counter to place her order. Even ice creams are made in house and include original flavors like roasted banana bourbon, coffee chia chip and kale cookies.

 

Lucky New Yorkers and visitors rejoice! by CHLOE. is expanding to Flatiron in Spring of 2016 and other locations may be in the work also.

 

by CHLOE. is certified kosher by the International Kosher Council (IKC)

 

Click by CHLOE. for hours and more info.

185 Bleecker St.

NYC

212-290-8000

Image courtesy of by CHLOE.
Image courtesy of by CHLOE.

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