Vegan Dining in OC: Seabirds Kitchen
Hello there! Last month I finally made it up to Seabirds Kitchen in Orange County & OMG, if you are in the So Cal vicinity….GET OVER THERE NOW!
Ever since I experienced my very first bite of a “Beer Battered Avocado Taco” from theSeabirds Truck at the Los Angeles Vegan Beer Fest a few years ago, I’ve been dying for more. Since that magical day, I’ve tried a few other’s attempts, but honestly nothing has yet to compare to Seabirds’ creamy, crispy, crunchy goodness. Sounds like an oxymoron, I know. How can it be creamy, yet crispy? You must try for yourself! Unfortunately for me, the Seabirds Truck was operating out of the OC, so when a craving hit, it’s wasn’t so convenient to get on the road & seek out the truck. And then, they, sadly, announced the truck’s retirement!
One of my favorite things about is that they source their fruits & vegetables from local organic farmers, so they offer a varying seasonal seasonal menu, with a focus on “farm to plate.” Oh, & did I mention that Seabirds is 100% vegan? Since it opened last summer, Seabirds Kitchen has been in the forefront of my mind as a must go-to, but even at a quick 1.5 hour drive away, I’ve had a hard time making time for a trip up there. So when I recently reconnected with a friend who is now living in Marina Del Rey, I suggested we meet up for a life update session over lunch at Seabirds. One look at the menu & she was in!
My lucky lunch date? The lovely Angela, health coach & blogger behind Nutritious Freedom. Angela & I worked together many years back during our respective make-up artist days. Angela left San Diego to pursue a career in NYC, & after a quick meet up in the Big Apple a few years ago, we’d lost touch. She recently relocated to the LA area & we reconnected through social media…this time our worlds colliding in a totally different forum – health, happiness, & the pursuit of wellness. It was so cool to see, after all these years, that we were on the same page when it came to nutrition & lifestyle. After getting very burned out in the make-up industry, Angela worked at New York’sInstitute for Integrative Nutrition, before moving back to the West Coast & launching her health coaching business. Seabirds was the perfect venue for sharing a healthy bite & catching up!
We began our meal by sharing a plate of “Burnt Brussels Sprouts” roasted & tossed with garlic, lime, & Dijon mustard. So delicious! It’s hard to go wrong with brussels sprouts, especially when roasted to a crisp! Upon my vehement recommendation, Angela ordered a “Beer Battered Avo Taco” a corn tortilla filled with fried avocado, seabirds sauce, crisp cabbage, red onion & lime. Simple flavors, but just as ridiculously yummy as I had remembered it to be (of course I had to sneak a bite, just to make sure!). Such a wonderful contrast of textures – creamy, crispy, rich, yet light, along with great crunch from the cabbage & zesty zip from lime. So good!
Deciding on an entree was not an easy. Do I order a couple of tried & true favorites, or go out on a limb & try something new? While everything on the menu sounded amazing, one entree bowl in particular caught my eye…the “Holy Smokes Bowl”… a hearty bowl filled with bbq jackfruit, sautéed greens, steamed cauliflower, pickled red onion, coconut bacon, Seabirds sauce & kentucky bbq sauce on a bed of brown rice.Oh, holy smokes, it was tasty! I was definitely intrigued by the bbq jackfruit, as it had been on my bucket list of unusual ingredients to try. I’ve heard it is the perfect vehicle for a flavorful sauce as it soaks it up like a sponge, & that its texture is similar to shredded beef or carnitas. I’ve never had either, so I cannot make a related comparison, but the texture was definitely tender & a bit stringy, & I can see how this could be a wonderful vegan substitute for a variety of recipes – from tacos & enchiladas, to sliders, or a topping to a hearty bowl like this one, or a lighter salad. There were so many wonderful flavors & textures married in this dish – tender greens & cauliflower, crispy coconut bacon, piquant pickled onion zesty bbq jackfruit, plus more bbq FTW & a generous drizzle of creamy cool “Seabirds Sauce” (hint, hint: vegenaise, cilantro, garlic, lime, jalapeño, salt & pepper, so a lithe bird told me!), & lets not forget the comforting bed of brown rice, which quite honestly I didn’t each much of. This bowl was generously portioned, full of flavor & super satisfying. I highly, highly recommend it!
Angela ordered the “Locals Bowl”, which I too was tempted to try, with brown rice, black beans, sauteed greens, pickled red onion, ancho salsa, fresh cilantro, tortilla strips, & chipotle sour cream. My photo did not do it justice, so it’s not pictured, but I can assure you that it looked as good as Angela said it tast have a feeling that its hard to go wrong with anything on the Seabirds menu!
I am so happy that I finally made it up to Seabirds Kitchen. This place is where it’s at! Casual, quaint, & comfortable with farm fresh vegan cuisine that will knock your wool-free socks off! We need more places like this in San Diego? Oooh, writing this post has me craving MORE! I must return, ASAP. So if you are in the LA/OC area, do me a favor, & visit to your hearts content. I certainly would if it was closer to me.
And those of you headed up to LAVBF this weekend enjoy, stay cool, & don’t drink & drive! Be sure to head immediately to the Seabirds Truck to get your avo taco on! I promise you won’t regret it!