Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Red Avocado, Iowa City

I am just posting away today, mostly because I am playing catch-up with reviews.

Anyway, this last Saturday my friend Tyrone and I took an excursion to the bustling metropolis of Iowa City, to get some lunch and chat. We stopped first at the New Pioneer Co-Op, the original. I have already profiled their Coralville branch, which I like much more- bigger and better equipped. However, this one had a lot of character.


It also had the advantage of being right across the street from our brunch spot- an all vegetarian restaurant called the Red Avocado, of which I had heard a lot.


The interior was very cool as well. We sat down, and the very attentive waitress (she really was very good) fetched us two Americano's, which were just the thing for a cold and wet morning. We waited for our food nursing our coffee, and I don't mind saying I was very happy when my sampler plate came.


On the top is the french toast, with some jam. Below that in the middle is a tofu scramble. Bottom right is a barley and black bean salad, and to the left is marinated tempeh.

Let me start by saying I wish I enjoyed this meal.

Don't get me wrong; it was perfectly decent, if a little expensive. It just wasn't very good, and at 10 dollars for the meal, I was expecting much better. For all the items on the plate, I got bored after a bite.It was just...flavorless. For all the items except the french toast, the seasoning seemed to consist of a mild level of curry, and then nothing. The french toast was good, but I mean, its fried bread: of course it was good!

Bottom line: if you are a vegan or vegetarian, you will enjoy the Red Avocado. If you eat meat, don't waste your time here.


Tyrgyzistan said...


You probably have the best food blog in Iowa.


Emily said...

Um... I'm a meat eater and I love red avocado. Most foodies are equal opportunity, no?

Ben Gordon said...


I am sorry you got the impression that I disliked the Red Avocado just because it was vegetarian- I meant no such thing! My favorite restaurant in Iowa City (Masala) is entirely vegetarian. My main issue with Red Avocado was that the food was so tasteless- although I plan to go back during the summer to see if fresh seasonal produce improves it.

T and R said...

I stumbled upon your blog after reading the Des Loines log via a Flickr foodporn group. As a former Iowan, I am really enjoying reading your blog!

I haven't had the experience of dining at The Red Avocado yet but I have to say the food pictured does not look very appetizing to me, so I'm not surprised that you found it bland (your other photos look pretty good so I don't think it's due to the photography from the looks of it!)

Ben Gordon said...

T and R-

I am glad you enjoy the blog! I have some very exciting visits for the Spring, so I hope you will stay tuned.