Raw Food is More Than Salads

The Prague raw food phenomenon reveals panoply of tastes

By Kari Sonde

Burgers, borscht and blueberry cheesecake, oh my! Follow us on an adventure through Czech raw foods.

Burgers, borscht and blueberry cheesecake, oh my! Follow us on an adventure through Czech raw foods. Photos by Kari Sonde.

The raw food craze has only recently hit the Czech Republic, with raw food spots popping up within the past two years. Raw food, classified as food that has not been heated above 48 degrees Celsius, usually means uncooked food or food in its natural state. Frequented by the young and health conscious, the raw food movement is a trendy new phenomenon in Prague.

We tried out four raw spots to see whether they lived up to the hype:

Secrets of Raw

With a laid-back San Francisco vibe and a pretty wait staff that could potentially be the basis for an MTV sitcom, Secrets of Raw delivers some truly excellent raw food. Located on the border of Zizkov and Vinohrady, Secrets has daily specials, which you should take advantage of for a soup and main course at 145 koruna (6 USD), but the prices aren’t too high to begin with. Off the daily menu, stars include a raw beet soup that I could have drank a gallon of happily and a raw spaghetti that was cool, fresh and spicy. Treat yourself to a banana pancake with chocolate “cream” and nut granola. There’s no shame in adding a juice along with it, which they make right at the counter. With tidy and creative plating, it’s a pretty meal. 

http://www.secretofraw.cz/

My Raw Café 

My Raw Café has a trendy LA atmosphere. It’s very pretty, very chic, with lots of clean lines and clean colors — think pale blues and whites. It’s definitely a little pricier than the average Prague restaurant. Located in what appears to be a mini version of New York’s Chelsea Market — a cornucopia of freshly cut meats, interesting cheeses and more at the upscale market, Gourmet Passage, in Dlouha — My Raw Cafe has some excellent food. The smoothies are delicious: the Berry Excellent smoothie, served in a young coconut, is a dead ringer for the Blue Velvet smoothie at Liqueteria in NYC. The nut milk cocktails would make amazing “milk”shakes — if they were served cold, which I wish they were. Their raw pizza is a delightful mouthful of nutty crust, raw cheese and fresh veggies. The Thai sticks, served with a spicy dipping sauce, were absolutely delicious. The desserts, however, were the true stars: the raw hazelnut chocolate tart was incredible, and the raw blueberry cheesecake was a pretty, purple dream. Ranging from 100 to 120 koruna (6 to 8 USD) for a smoothie and 75 to 185 koruna for a dish (3-8 USD), it’s a bit pricier than the average Czech place. Avoid the quiche — the clay-like texture threw me off.

https://www.facebook.com/myrawcafe

http://www.gurmetpasazdlouha.eu/en/location

 Sweet Secrets of Raw

The sister store to Secrets of Raw, Sweet Secrets, located in Vinohrady near Namesti Miru, is all about dessert — and raw desserts are pretty great. In the cute, well-lit space with cacti and flowers along the middle of the tables, you can order the typical raw cake, which usually follows the pie/cheesecake pattern of a crust and a filling. They are delicious. The raw tiramisu, at only 39 koruna (2 USD) is a tiny bit gritty, but it’s an excellent mimic with a similar texture to the original dessert and an almost identical aftertaste. Their other cakes are equally delicious: the blueberry “cheesecake” is smooth and creamy with a great crust. The raw ice cream, a whipped banana concoction, tastes a bit like a cross between a smoothie and ice cream. While it was a great treat at only 115 koruna (5 USD), I do wish my chocolate ice cream tasted like chocolate instead of banana. Bonus points for the awesome nut granola on top. 

http://www.sweetsecretofraw.cz/index.php/en/

 PuroVeganz

The concept cafe to a vegan brand (Veganz), Puro brings Veganz’s health conscious food to a restaurant setting while still offering the goods on their website. Puro, located in Vinohrady near Jiriho z Podebrad, offers a mix of health and dietary conscious food in an entirely bright green store. It’s a bit jarring. With a good raw food selection and low prices, Puro is a solid option for those who aren’t 100 percent into the raw food diet. However, while raw soups are yummy, their raw burger, at 95 koruna (4 USD) left much to be desired. With an odd texture and indiscernible taste, the star of the dish was the fresh lettuce the burger sat on top of.

http://www.veganz.cz/info/puro-bistro-a-restaurace

 

Kari Sonde is in the Gallatin School of Individualized Study class of 2017. Her hometown is McLean, Virginia.

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Categories: Spring 2015 Issue Number 3

Author:The Prague Wandering

The Prague Wandering is an NYU based study abroad webzine- the only one of its kind. It focuses on issues in contemporary Czech culture and the city of Prague, exploring beyond the study abroad bubble.

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