Saturday, April 24, 2010

Lentil As Anything

I took the opportunity today to visit a very different and delicious restaurant, Lentil As Anything. This restaurant was unlike any I have ever visited before; Lentil survives on the generosity of its patrons. There are no prices, no bill when you finish your meal, no cash register, just a box near the front of the restaurant where patrons may, if they wish, pay what they feel.
So let me first talk about the restaurant, then we'll revisit the concept of Lentil. When you first enter, it can be a little confusing as to where you are meant to go. To get to the front you walk past the outdoor dining tables and there may be someone out front preparing food for the next group of visitors. You'll see the days menu on a big chalkboard near the main door, there is also a menu just inside on a large white board. Chances are someone will greet you here and this is where you will order your meal. They will also happily answer any questions about the menu- like, What is a Sri Lankan Farmers breakfast?
Once you've ordered you can choose a place to sit, out front, inside, or outside in the rear of the building. Just be sure to let the staff know where you're headed so they can bring your food. The food is all vegetarian and you'll find a mix of traditional as well as foods from all over the world. You can see the brekky menu on the above photo and later on you can enjoy items such as: lentil burgers, Vietnamese salad, Japanese cabbage-and-carrot pancake, or a range of curries.

We thoroughly enjoyed our meal of poached eggs on toast for myself,

for my husband, The Sri Lankan Farmers Breakfast (a crepe filled with spiced potatoes and other veg),

and for the kids, sweet French Toast.

We were pleasantly surprised with the quality and presentation of the food. When you take in the surroundings of mismatched chairs and tables along with the eclectic art hanging on the walls you may wonder what type of food you'll be eating. But not to worry, the food was delicious! 

Lentil's philosophy of trust and generosity allows them to provide food for all, including those with very limited resources. They also provide training and educational opportunities for new migrants, refugees, and the long-term unemployed. Basically, if you are willing to put on an apron, you are welcome to work in the kitchen.

Name: Lentil As Anything
Telephone(03) 9419 6444
Location1 Hellers Street, Abbotsford, Victoria 3067
Geting There: Via public transport the best way is bus. Take the 200, 201 or 207 from Lonsdale, or the 205 from Melbourne Uni (it then heads down Lygon, Elgin and Johnston), get off at the Clarke St stop (just before you cross over the Yarra). Turn right and walk down Clarke then left onto Hellers and into the Abbotsford Convent.

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1 comment:

AlexandraPearl said...

Also note that there are a few other Lentil as Anything's in Melbourne. You'll need to look up the exact addresses, but there is one in St Kilda and one in Footscray, and they are meant to be opening in Fitzroy sometime soon:)