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17° & CLOUDY ON MONDAY 20 AUGUST IN AUCKLAND
By Laetitia Laubscher
July 30, 2015
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The Raw Kitchen

Attention health nuts: The Raw Kitchen is your friend.
By Laetitia Laubscher
July 30, 2015
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Everything The Raw Kitchen makes is vegan, dairy free and gluten free, which is good news for those tired of the fussy label and of asking too many questions. It's also nice to feel that one can have a cafe that is an absolute health haven - you can order anything without even the slightest prospect of post-meal guilt. In fact, it's so healthy that you almost feel wholesome just for entering through the shop door. Almost.

I tried the Italian zoodles ($8.50 - $12.50), which was a cold, raw variation of an age-old comfort food, the spaghetti pesto. Their healthy rehash consisted of zucchini noodles, oregano pesto, rosemary, almond, black olives, sundried tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, capers and Himalayan rock salt. And because I was craving chocolate, as per usual, I added the choc almond smoothie ($9) to my order - which had cocoa powder, almond milk, dates, banana and coconut nibs sprinkled on top. Healthy or not, the smoothie was perfection. I would have no qualms making a trip over to The Raw Kitchen a daily ritual just for that beautiful chocolatey beast. The Zoodles I could go for again, but it wasn't their star player. Maybe it was the capers, but it hit the palette in quite a salty way, and just didn't have that comforting element to it that it promised as a pasta alternative.

Almost everything (minus the soup of the day) is from the cabinet, which means it's all fresh, decently priced (ranging from around $8.50 to $12.50) but also all cold (again, minus the soup). Some other interesting options to pick from include a raw pizza (made with a raw base), Pad Thai, a Moroccan bowl and some avocado topped bruschetta (again, a raw, activated bread base). They also sell self-bottled juices, a selection of coffees and tea and kombucha. And if you really love that bread of theirs, you could grab a loaf to take home with you as well.

The Raw Kitchen is everything you want it to be as a healthy cafe. The decor is clean, Scandinavian-style without being barren or sterile. The near-white pastel fit-out and lone tulips systematically placed on each table don't soften up the space too much, but just enough to make quite homely. It's also very well priced and not too busy. All in all, an ideal cafe to visit for a healthy lunch or to grab a quick takeaway salad.

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