Saturday, August 27, 2016

Ethos Vegan Kitchen! (Winter Park, FL)

The intent of Ethos is as follows: 1) to improve the diversity of vegan cuisine offerings in the Central Florida area, 2) to provide good food at a reasonable price in a comfortable atmosphere, and, 3) to showcase the variety, freshness, and flavor of vegan dining.
I’ve wanted to write about Ethos Vegan Kitchen for several months now, and it fully deserves to be the subject of my first post here. I simply adore this place. The food is fantastic. The people are friendly, knowledgeable, and professional. The atmosphere is relaxed and positive.

I was surprised to find so many vegan options in the Orlando area. (Several seem to be grouped around the beautiful Rollins College campus, so that’s probably a hopeful sign.) Ethos looks like the most popular among a competitive group, and for good reason.

In my pre-vegan life, my favorite meal - and death-row choice - was tortellini in a cream sauce. I hadn’t found anything of the sort since I became a vegan (vegan ravioli is easy enough to find, but oddly not tortellini). So when I was comparing Orlando vegan restaurant menus and saw Ethos’ Tortellini Florentine, I was immediately sold.

And the dish exceeded my wildest expectations. So much so, in fact, that I have little more to review, since I had the same dish the next and unfortunately last time I was able to make it back before I left Florida. We did also have the vegetable galette, which was delicious; a very nice flight of wines; and several absurdly good peanut butter and chocolate chip cookies. I would love to try virtually every item on the menu.

The whole baked-goods section looked amazing. The menu clearly indicates their gluten- and soy-free options. They also have a kids’ menu, a Saturday and Sunday jazz/funk brunch, and an easily navigable, informative, and regularly updated web site (a rarity among restaurants).

To add to the allure, the restaurant is within walking distance of the marvelous Morse Museum, which holds the world’s largest collection of works by Louis Comfort Tiffany, and the walk takes you down Park Avenue, Winter Park’s shopping district, and by Central Park. As we strolled along and through the park, a trio played classical music. Winter Park is a great place for a day trip, and any visit should include a stop at Ethos Vegan Kitchen.

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