Menu at this tavern reaches down to your soul

Probably because at Soul Tavern in South Beach’s Sunset Harbour neighborhood, the all-vegetarian menu is so rich and soulful you’ll never miss the meat. And that’s exactly what I told Jason Gordon, founder and owner of this warm, inviting and yes, soulful restaurant.

Gordon smiled when I said that and then proceeded to bring out dish, after dish, after dish of the many meatless wonders from his menu. From the get go, it was evident that as much attention is paid to ingredients as to presentation.

Hemp crushed edamame cakes

The first dish was the hemp crusted edamame cakes made with black tahini, fennel, green apple, celery root, pomegranate and herbs. The simple edamame is completely elevated to pure appetizer level here.

Malanga chips

Mango avocado tartare

Crunchy malanga chips came next served with a togarashi-cashew aioli. Seriously, it was impossible to eat just a few. The starter samplings concluded with a mango avocado tartare with peeled grape tomatoes, yuzu, herbs and chips. Looked too pretty to eat but that didn’t stop me.

It’s Good to be King maki roll

Then it was on to the maki rolls and out came the It’s Good To Be The King (yes, that’s the name of the dish) with panzu-marinated King Oyster mushrooms, burnt eggplant, spinach, cucumber, asparagus and avocado. Another gorgeous looking plate.

Fire pizza

Next was the fire pizza with tomato sauce, Brussels leaves, roasted red pepper, tomato, basil and mozzarella. The Brussels were a unique touch.

Naughty gnocchi

Roasted oyster mushroom taco

Eggplant medallion

Three samplings from the Substantials section of the menu¬† followed. They included the naughty gnocchi with cherry tomatoes, garlic, basil, chilies, shishito peppers and a mac-nut cream cloud. Then it was the “meaty” roasted oyster mushroom taco with kale-orange brown rice, black eyes peas and avocado cream. Finally it was the robust eggplant medallion with sweet potato and kale hash, ratatouille, mac-nut alfredo and herb salad.

VGF carrot cake and impossible mousse

And we can’t forget about dessert, that’s right dessert. A hefty VGF carrot cake and cashew “cream cheese” frosting with apricot preserves lemon zest and lovely edible flowers was accompanied by the impossible mousse made of chocolate covered chia and dotted with freeze dried raspberries.

I promise you, at Soul Tavern you’ll leave the table as satisfied as if you’d had a full on meat lovers feast. The clever pairings and use of vegetables to create a hearty consistency can seriously convert anyone.

Soul Tavern, 1801 West Ave., Miami Beach, 305.925-0799 http://www.soultavern.com/

 

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