After years of dealing with well-meaning relatives and restaurants with no veggie-friendly options but salad and gigantic Portobello mushrooms, Rebecca is excited to share her hard-won recipes, nutrition tips and restaurant dining advice with both fellow herbivorous and omnivorous Central PAers alike.
Back in June my husband and I went to Café Chocolate in Lititz for the first time. The menu boasts several vegetarian and vegan options, and "chocolate" is in the name of the restaurant, so I figured it would be my kind of place.
First I'll comment on the chocolate. I love chocolate, and over the years as I've read about the health benefits of dark chocolate I've developed quite an appreciative taste for it. Back in the days when we lived near a Trader Joe's, I delighted in their selection of organic dark chocolate bars from around the world. (As a side note, if you know of a local store with a chocolate selection like Trader Joe's, please feel free to comment!) Café Chocolate has the real deal. The wait staff walks around the restaurant asking if you'd like to try some of their chocolate – of course we did, and it is delicious. Nice and dark and not too sweet.
On that note, it's worth a trip to Café Chocolate just for their drink menu, which utilizes their chocolate. I had the Classic Hot Chocolate, which has 65% dark chocolate with steamed organic milk, and my husband had a mocha. They were both delicious. They also have a wide variety of iced drinks, including several strawberry coolers. The drinks are not cheaply priced, but they're also not cheaply made.
On to the main menu. Café Chocolate immediately gained my approval by having all-day breakfast options. I love breakfast food. They have a nice variety too, including crepes, quiche, and a chocolate, peanut butter and banana panini. In addition, there are several internationally-themed soups and salads with unique ingredients like quinoa and butternut squash, and a sizable number of vegetarian or vegan main dishes. I had the Vegetable Curry Siam with Black Rice Risotto, and my husband had the Cubano Sandwich. Even though we didn't order it during our visit, I also want to mention the Chili con Chocolate, which is literally chili with dark chocolate and 12 spices that's served over brown rice.
I enjoyed my curry very much, but it was definitely sour and tangy. The curries I've had in the past had a little hint of sweet to them, so I found myself turning to my hot chocolate periodically as I ate. My husband also enjoyed the Cubano, but I'm surprised to say that we didn't have dessert – we just didn't have the room. There's an entire menu for dessert, as one might expect, and there are also lovely chocolate truffles on display near the cash register in case you're willing to be tempted.
For those who are looking for gluten-free or vegan options, both are available on the main menu. There is also a nice little selection of items on the children's menu, including oven-baked fries and flatbread pizza. And of course, they have a portobello mushroom sandwich!
I'd recommend Café Chocolate if you're looking for some fun and creative vegetarian breakfast or lunch food, and most certainly if you enjoy chocolate. I think next time we'll be heading to Lititz for dessert!