Thursday, January 6, 2011

clear, ubud, bali

restaurant specialising in gourmet vegetarian, vegan and raw food
Jalan Hanoman No 8, Ubud, Bali

beans : organic Balinese blend
leaf : imported leaf, local herbal & kombucha tea
soy : no, but nut 'mylk' available
fork : raw frozen chocolate and coffee layered cake
spoon : chocolate butterfly smoothie, thick peanut butter and chocolate joy in a glass
knife : strawberry french toast stuffed with cream cheese & drizzled with strawberry sauce & fresh mint (40,000rps A$4.60)
plate & bowl : golden temple vegetable curry with saffron rice & mango chutney (45,000rps A$5.10)
rainbow salad of jackfruit, mango, red capsicum, basil & mint with almond butter dressing (40,000rps, A$4.50)
snow tofu, coconut crusted tofu with sauteed greens in tamarind sauce & garlic mashed potato (45,000rps, A5.10)

footprint : bare feet for staff and customers
price : 25,000k A$2.85
service : friendly & casual
open : 8.00am - 10.30pm last orders

buzz : Ubud is evolving into a world leader in raw vegan cuisine, and Clear is a shining light in the growing scene.  Leave your shoes and preconceptions at the door, for Clear is a place to stretch your dining boundaries. Fresh organic ingredients are tossed, shredded, dehydrated, blended and boiled in an extensive choice of raw vegan, cooked vegan and vegetarian dishes.  Seafood makes an appearance in such guises as chilli lime prawn burritos and seared black pepper tuna steak, but don't expect any land animals on the menu.

Step off the street through a bamboo screen into a zen courtyard that sets the relaxed vibe, inviting you through the carved Balinese doors into the slick interior.  Four rusting steel I-beams support a vast grass roof,  dropping to a rear dining area wrapped around a courtyard pond and waterfall. Covered in water lettuce the pond has claimed a couple of wanderers, so watch your step.  The union of marble, concrete, glass and bamboo, with contemporary furniture, assorted vases and random animal cushions make for a dramatic style, which at first sight is impressive, but after a few visits seems a little too eclectic.  The toilet is entertaining,  and yes the flowers are coming out of the cistern. The white soft furnishings are starting to show wear and the tables have hip busting sharp corners, however this doesn't detract from the ambitious and nourishing food. 

Drinks alone are worthy of a visit and sport their own comprehensive "Liquids" menu. Tonics, elixirs, juices and smoothies, with names like "one love", "island butterfly, "cool rain" and "sacred spice", pack a punch  with their innovative combinations.  The ice-cold thick smoothies are potentially addictive.  If you must have alcohol bring your own - there's no cover charge. 

Coffee comes with cow or nut mylk and the basic latte gives rise to options of classic, chocolate, mint, coconut, cinnamon or vanilla.   Breakfast is popular with the yoga set, and throughout the day it is a relaxed place to hang out and use the wi-fi or chat over drinks. They even have laptops to borrow if you are computer challenged.

The global flavours of Indonesia, India, Mexico, Thailand and Italy are reinterpreted in lighter, healthier and raw versions.  The Lifefood Pizza takes the familiar tastes of sundried tomato, mushrooms, garlic, and cashew pesto and presents it raw and vegan on a flaxseed crust.  Instead of processed bread wraps, tofu and  vegetables are stuffed in crisp lettuce cups with sweet & spicy sour dressing, and in place of wheat pasta, zucchini is spiralized into silky linguine and tossed in your choice of gourmet sauce. 
Clear is a haven for vegetarians and raw foodies wanting gourmet choices at very reasonable prices.  Get there before the carnivores find out.

1 comment:

thanks for taking the time, milk or sugar?


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