Perhaps it was a case of ‘third time lucky’. This was visit #3 to the Swan Valley Vegetarian Café. My past two visits were for brunch and a PM coffee’n’cake session in the second half of last year. For those that don’t know, the Swan Valley Vegetarian Café is in ‘the valley’ about 30 mins drive from Perth CBD. Some of its neighbours are wineries, chocolate factories and farms. Run by Julie (a naturopath) and Charlotte (a Bowen therapist) the café exudes a quaint country charm.
Greeted with a smile at the front counter when walking in, we’re given menus and a general direction of our table. Hubby and I made our way through the tea shop towards our seats. It was a lovely sunny day, however appearances proved deceiving as it was quite chilly outside. Pity, as the café has a beautiful garden area and live music to enjoy too.
Taking our seats indoors, we were served immediately by our friendly waitress, who brought us water without needing to be asked. We ordered our mains and requested a fresh detox juice (moi) and Flower Blossom tea for drinks. Curious name, I thought.
The tea in pre-bloom
A blooming tea is a feast for the eyes and the taste buds. It delivered an explosion of spectacular shades of green made from high-quality fresh green tea buds from the high mountains of Yunnan province in China. Consisting of a bundle of dried tea leaves encasing a dried flower, the bundle expands and unfurls in a process that emulates a blooming flower when steeped. The flowers inside emerge as the centrepiece.
Wow. And here is the blooming tea at its full glorious height.
I slurped my detox juice up in a matter of seconds. Delish. No pic sorry! It was a deep red hue due to the beetroot.
Our mains arrived simultaneously. Being a chilly winter’s day, hubby opted for the Moussaka. Not just any moussaka though. Typically, traditional Greek moussaka is a coronary waiting to happen – lamb mince, cheese, béchamel sauce, potato, eggs and butter. This was the vegan version. It looked and smelled awesome….
Swan Valley Vegetarian Cafe vegan moussaka
Hubby gulped down a mouthful. It tasted as good as it looked. Big thumbs up. Actually, an even bigger thumbs up as this is coming from a non-vegan! Meanwhile, I looked down at my chosen main, Raw Marinated Mushrooms with a Sunflower Seed Pate. I’d been addicted to sunflower seed pate since devouring the sun-dried tomato version at home. Again, the presentation was impeccable.
Raw Marinated Mushrooms with Sunflower Seed Pate
We both wished we had several stomachs so we could try everything on the menu. Alas, another day another time. With our plates scraped clean, we turned our attention to dessert. There was quite a variety of both raw, cooked, vegan and gluten-free sweet nothings to cap off a, so far, faultless dining experience.
Staying true to my raw roots, I chose the cinnamon maca slice and hubby went for a choc beetroot vegan cake. I also ordered a mocha with oat milk. I was curious about the desserts and coffee, as on previous occasions they were less than stellar.
best buds: beetroot + cacao
raw cinnamon + maca slice
Ohhh, so glad I saved room for dessert… and the mocha was excellent too. Hot, thick and frothy.. just the way I like it.
From a year ago, this humble establishment has made leaps and bounds forward. The presentation, quality and service has drastically improved. Combined with their seamless amalgamation of nutrition, healing, overall health and well-being – this is one place to definitely mark on the map. It’s proven to be a haven for the like-minded. There are various events on the calendar such as pilates, tarot reading and educational seminars. Another big tick – the café makes donations to the Greener Pastures Sanctuary in Waroona, Lighthouse Foundation and other animal-friendly charities too.
Satiated and happy, we said good-bye and are looking forward to our next visit. I’m glad there’s an establishment like this in the Valley area. Often, I hesitate on making the 30 min drive out as inevitably after winery-hopping and general roaming around hunger will beckon. There is rarely anything on offer that suits my chosen lifestyle. Until now!
Further notes on Swan Valley Vegetarian Café:
They’re actually licensed and offer a selection of vegan, organic & bio-dynamic wines (some from ‘The Valley’), as well as a range of gluten-free beers. Whether its breakfast, lunch, brunch, high tea, special functions or catering, it’s pretty likely you’ll be well taken care of.
The tea store stocks their own range of herbal teas ‘Valley Tea’, with herbal blends specially formulated to benefit the body’s systems (brews include Slumber, Winter Blues, Adrenal Detox, Stressless, Purify, Inflammation Tea, Dieter’s Tea, as well as old favourites such as Irish Breakfast et al and much much more), Rooibos varieties and organic Green teas with hints of organic orange peel, lemon grass, lavender etc. There’s Chinese white tea, Jasmine tea and of course the blooming teas – which I thoroughly enjoyed during this visit! Check out Valley Tea for more info.
Besides tea, other drool-worthy items in store are Yummy Crunchy Granola, Organic Quinoa, Organic Coconut Sugar, Agave, Cacao, Organic Hulled Hemp Seeds, and Loving Earth Drinking Chocolate. You’ll have to see the range for yourself.
Let me know what you guys think of this place!
Hope you all had a lovely weekend.