The Beet is a spot for vegans and meat-eaters to come together to appreciate locally sourced, organic meals. "Check your conscious at the door," is their unofficial motto, as co-owners Heather Osler and Michelle Vella have already done the background work for you to ensure everything is fresh, nutritious and as organic as possible.
The cozy space is bright and welcoming, with an array of mismatched booths, wood tables, chairs and twinkle lights lining the walls. Heather tells me even the furniture stays true to the organic feel, with reclaimed materials like bamboo cupboards, sunflower seed shell tables and paper stone countertops filling the restaurant.
She tells me that the Junction was their ideal location because it had lacked a spot for homemade, organic food. While The Beet originally started out as a market place, it's now a full-fledged restaurant focused on clean eating.
The menu is huge, with options for every dietary need. We start off with a fully loaded avocado ($7). It's stuffed with brown coconut Thai rice and veggies and topped with spicy peanut sauce, avocado lime cream, sports and cilantro chilli drizzle. It's just as tasty as it's picture perfect, I even see another customer order one as soon as he sees ours.
As with any health-oriented spot, there's an extensive list of fresh smoothies and juices. I recommend the Queen Beet smoothie ($7). Loaded with beets, carrots, apples, ginger, mango and ice lemon, the smoothie is also made with vanilla rice milk instead of yogurt so it's not overly thick (although- yogurt can be substituted for an extra dollar).
Teas ($2.50-3.50), espresso-based drinks ($2.25-4), wine ($9), beer ($7) and cocktails ($9) are also featured on the drink menu.
The harissa salad ($14) is a huge bowl with spinach, halloumi, roasted red peppers and zucchini, sweet potato, tamari roasted seeds, pickled onions and tossed with Harissa vinaigrette. It sure is filling.
My personal love for anything Thai-inspired, makes the vegan Thai rice bowl ($14) a must-order. With brown coconut rice with tofu, cashews, basil, cilantro, carrots, purple cabbage, broccoli, sweet potato, lime and spicy peanut sauce - this is my favourite dish here.
The Beet's top seller is the Buenos Dias wrap ($13). Stuffed with avocado, spicy black bean spread, quinoa, pico de gallo, Quebec cheddar and cilantro chilli drizzle (my new favourite condiment), and served with a house salad, I can see why this is so popular.
Looking for something sweet? The dessert menu is stacked with items like a coconut cashew cream cake ($8) and freshly backed cookies ($2) and muffins ($2.75).
The comfortable neighbourhood feel is what will draw you into The Beet, but the extensive menu with options for herbivores and carnivores alike is what will keep you coming back for more.
Photos by Hector Vasquez.