Since my husband and I have a rental property in Ventura, we go there often. We usually set up our business dealings in the afternoon so we can stop in Los Angeles for lunch. There are so many vegan restaurants in LA that there’s always a new place to try.
On our trip last weekend, however; we decided to drive all the way to Ventura for lunch. We wanted to check out Mary’s Secret Garden, an organic vegan bistro that got great ratings on Yelp.
We walked into Mary’s, a tiny house that’s been converted into a charming eatery with a subtle Zen vibe, and were seated at the last available table. While my husband looked at the menu, I was distracted by the peaceful beach paintings that tastefully adorned the walls and then drawn to the interesting ceiling that was hand painted with spiritual sayings.
When the waitress came to take our drink orders, I hadn’t even looked at the menu, so I just copied my husband and ordered their fresh, raw lemonade.
After much deliberation, when the waitress came back with our drinks, I ordered The Secret Burger and the soup of the day which was Portuguse Black Eye Pea, Potato, Collard Green and Cilantro soup (just try to say that three times fast – haha). My husband ordered the Deluxe Raw Tostada.
When our food came, my husband’s meal was artfully presented and looked delicious. Mine looked good too, but when I tasted it I was blown away. I don’t know how they did it, but my vegan burger tasted like bacon – really, I’m not joking here! It was hands down the best vegan burger I’ve ever had (I may be biased because bacon is the one non-vegan food that I miss). My husband loved his tostada too.
We will definitely eat at Mary’s again – who says you have to go to Los Angeles for awesome vegan food!
Just for Fun!
I want to share a quote from M. Jason B.’s Yelp review of Mary’s Secret Garden about the stickers they give out to kids. To my horror, my daughter saw the one of two cute pigs lying together, read the “don’t eat us” text, laughed and out loud in a very small restaurant, and said, “That’s funny, my dad loves bacon!”