Friday, September 2, 2011

Eating Raw in Montreal: Crudessence

As I have previously mentioned, my favourite restaurant, WOW, blew me off a couple of months ago and left a hole in my heart. I have been trying to fill the void with homemade Almonds Burgers, Salad Dressings and Cashew Cheesecakes...but it isn't the same. I am lazy and not as talented as the fine people of WOW.

I don't think anything makes me quite as happy as eating raw food…especially when someone else makes it for me. This past week, I finally accepted my loss and started Googling for nearby raw food restaurants...which ended up being in Montreal. So, James and I drove to Montreal, under the guise of shopping and showing James the city, but, by dinner time, we had to admit we came just to eat at Crudessence.

The Crudessence on Mackay is way bigger than WOW—both in actual building size and the size of the menu...but they smell the same and it was comforting. The menu was huge. We studied it for so long at home and still struggled to decide when we got there. I was so happy.

We ordered appetizers, mains and desserts, and tried to remember to take pictures before we ate them…but failed. We did get my Fiesta nachos...

...and James' partially eaten walnut stuffed mushrooms.

Unfortunately, I finished my pesto spaghetti with zucchini noodles and onion bread before I could think to snap a shot, and the same goes for James' zucchini lasagna with caesar salad...gone way before the camera ever came to mind.

Surprisingly, I thought to photograph my banana split (they did have cheesecake, but I decided I should probably experience something new)...

...and James' cashew yogurt and granola parfait, before we even started.

My favourites were the zucchini lasagna and the living granola in the parfait...and the guacamole from the nachos. I have to admit, some of the stuff was a bit salty, the ice cream in the banana split had a strange taste, compared to the ice cream from WOW, and the baklava we took to go was a disappointment…but these were all minor. I loved everything about the place, including the wonderful boutique they have in the restaurant—I wanted all of their raw food recipe books...I have never seen such large containers of Coconut Oil. Come to Ottawa...

All in all, however, I still prefer WOW and get the impression that, despite the relative smallness of their menu, they put a bit more care into the quality of their items. Also, I prefer the restaurant's small felt more homey and I got to talk to the staff quite a bit. So, WOW, if anyone with the power to reopen your doors reads this, update your website or send me a message...please.


  1. definitely making cashew yogurt soon, especially because there's no coconut yogurt in whistler yet! this will be perfect

  2. YUM!!!!!! I miss NACHOS. I'm going to Seoul next weekend and I'm going to sniff out a Mexican restaurant if it's the last thing I ever do.

    Question: how do you make raw pasta and raw bread??

  3. Cashew yogurt is delicious..hmm

    Katie—the raw pasta was made using very thinly sliced zucchini for noodles. It didn't really taste like pasta, but it also didn't just taste like eating zucchini. And the raw bread...perhaps they should use a different descriptive word, hah, because yes, it was more like a thick cracker, made in a dehydrator.


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