Pure Food and Wine

Manhattan, New York City


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When my husband asked me where I would like to go for my birthday, I didn’t think twice. Pure Food and Wine, of course! Not because it became popular on the TV series Sex and the City, but because I love raw food. I love kelp, pad Thai, raw desserts and all types of smoothies. After all I’ve spent 7 weeks at a raw food institute. My only disappointment was that it was too expensive and I didn’t get to sample all the wonderful food they must have. And for a raw, gluten-free, vegan foodie gal like me, that’s big one. The food was good, the price not so good for most people. The Gal @ http://www.thehealthydish.com/category/feature-stories/restaurant/page/2/

Image for Cass Danger

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Pure is, in my opinion, the BEST vegan restaurant in the city, raw or otherwise (and I am far from a raw foodist). Their food is highly creative, beautiful, healthy, filling, and also healthy. The atmosphere is also beautiful and it is a great date spot (although it's pricey so you better really like your date!). :)

The food at Pure Food and Wine is phenomenal. If I had to rate them purely on the quality/taste/creativity of their food, they would get 5 stars. However, considering how pricey they are, I have to only give it 4 stars since it's high prices make it largely inaccessible to most New Yorkers. They are very heavy on the mushrooms, which I abhor, but their chefs are creative and the dishes involved so I do not feel my food is lacking by leaving the mushrooms off.

I've had some items for take out, like the lasagna (very good and very filling because it's loaded with dense nut cheese), and the collard green rolls (fantastic - a favorite snack!). I dined in the restaurant recently for the first time and it was a real treat. I happened to be dining with one of the cooks and we received superior treatment so 1) I can't say my experience was representative, and 2) I was SPOILED beyond belief to try way more dishes that I'd ever be able to afford on my own.

We started with smoothies and I went with the unfortunately named "spanking", which had coconut and several other tropical fruits. It was very good, but certainly not worth $14. We then had the cheese platter, which consists of 3 Dr. Cow cheeses (so they aren't homemade), flax/seed crackers, strawberry and basil. Very good, but considering you can just buy Dr. Cow cheese in the store, I would go with something else next time. We then had the hazelnut crostini with caper Bernaise (macadamia/cashew cheese), sauerkraut, and sprouts. It normally comes with cremini mushrooms but I had it without. This dish was OUTSTANDING. Definitely my favorite the entire night.

We started with the mini pizza entree (raw cracker-like crust, nut cheese, tomato, and greens) which was so-so. I was told that it normally comes with mushrooms, which would likely make it very tasty (assuming one likes mushrooms). We then had the pad thai, which comes with kelp noodles, bok choy, and mushrooms (of course). I am not huge on the texture of kelp and I don't like mushrooms so this wasn't my favorite dish but I could tell that it was very well-made and may be popular with others. My favorite entree was the spanikopita. It had coconut-meat "pastry" sheets and was stuffed with seasoned nut cheese and surrounded with cauliflower and grapes. It was a tad salty but it was delicious.

For dessert, we started with the sundae with both chocolate and vanilla ice cream and caramelized nuts, and it was fantastic. We then had the "cheesecake", which didn't really resemble cheesecake, which is okay with me because I don't care for cheesecake. The nut cream tasted like cheesecake but it also had a maple-beer reduction sauce, ice cream, and other flavors that made it much more interesting than the usual dessert.

rating star

Great ambience and gluten-free options. The stuffed squash blossoms and mushroom ravioli were great. The assorted nut cheeses was our favorite appetizer, and the blueberry peach cannoli was amazing. Service was great. The only reason we didn't rate at the top of the scale was that the food was a little more pricey than comparable food at other restaurants.

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The food is tasty and creative, and it is a good date place. However, the service was not very nice either time I went. They were snooty and strangely chose customers to be nice to-- and bring free food to-- and those to snub, right next to them. On my last visit they forgot our appetizer but charged us for it, as well as charging us for another appetizer that we didn't order but assumed was gratis since they brought it to us. Maybe that was just a bad waitress. So it's an impressive place to go but if they don't think you are up to par, you might not get as nicely treated as the next person. I definitely won't be going back. There are plenty of open and friendly vegetarian restaurants around. If you want raw, go to Quintessence.

Image for conde.kedar

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Pure food has great decor and atmosphere, and efficient, friendly service, but it's a little loud for conversations. That said, it's a great date spot.

The food here is raw, though it's unusual by raw standards and definitely didn't taste like any other raw food I've eaten. For the first time ever, I didn't actually realize I was eating raw food; my non-vegan colleagues didn't even realize the food was vegan (it was just good and well-presented food). As such, I must consider it a success.

Most of the dishes have an emphasis on avocados and mushrooms. We started with a sushi roll ($20) which had a great array of textures and flavors and was some of the better vegan sushi I've had in my life.

I then had a braised mushroom dish with mustard greens ($25). It was unusual, and again didn't taste like raw food, but didn't blow me away. I didn't like the vastly varying tastes from the mushrooms to the sweet rice-pudding-like risotto that was underneath the greens and mushrooms. My colleagues enjoyed their hempseed burger and lasagna, which suggests to me that I should have gone for something more normal-sounding.

I finished the meal with a superb, delicious, delicate and refreshing mint sundae ($17). My colleagues loved their black forest cake, too.

I don't think this was the best food I've ever had (that title still belongs to Horizons in Philadelphia), but it was very good, and elevated the status of raw food in my mind. It's also one of the better expensive vegan joints in New York; though it's not as good as Blossom or Cafe Blossom, it's better than Counter or Candle 79.

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love this elegant, beautifully presented food, raw, vegan restaurant. lovely sitting outside in the open air in the summer.

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Great raw food. The service and atmosphere were great too. We were lucky that night and was seated next to Sarma herself! My friends and I all tried different appetizers, salads, entrees and desserts. They were all delicious. The tacos were awesome and the best was the creamy cauliflower samosas. The classic sundae was the best I have ever eaten. Better than milk ice cream. I bought the book and they have the best raw chocolate pudding too. A must for any raw foodist. Yummy!

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This restaurant is amazing! From the serene and welcoming atmosphere to the gorgeous top-model clientelle to the mouth-watering, unforgettable raw dishes; this place stands out in my experience of raw dining. Being from the San Francisco bay area, this place was a treat which, while it is, in my estimation, a higher caliber that the famed "Roxanne's," is probably better. I will definitely go back during my stay in Manhattan (there is also a To-Go). Do not miss this place while it still exists!!!
I'd give it a 12!

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