A Healthy Lunch at M Café in Beverly Hills

IMG_2212Since I don’t venture too far from Santa Monica for lunch, going to Beverly Hills is a treat so Jeffrey and I decided to try M Café which came highly recommended by a few colleagues and clients.

M Café is macrobiotic restaurant.  The macrobiotic diet is composed mainly of whole grains as the staple combined with vegetables, fish, legumes, soups, seaweeds and soy products. It emphasizes locally grown produce.

M Café is a rather unpretentious no frills order at the counter type of place with reasonable prices.  If you want a quick healthy lunch without the glitter this your place.

                                                                                   M Cafe Nut Bar

For such a small restaurant the variety of soups, salads, wraps, entrees, and a la carte specialty salads is impressive.  They even have a small section of books and products.

I selected things I would normally recommend to clients and one outside the box choice.

The entrée I tried was the “M Café Macro Meal” with black cod.  It comes with heirloom tomatoes, seaweed, steamed vegetables in season, pickles made in house and about 1 cup of brown rice.  I selected this choice since Andrew Weil highly recommends eating black cod on a regular basis due to the high amount of omega 3’s (anti-inflammatory fats).

IMG_2200 The portions were just right for myself in terms of protein (about 4 ounces), veggies and the starch but might leave a male wanting more.  The cod was a tad salty for my taste but otherwise it was the perfect meal.

The side salads we tried were wild salmon, scarlet quinoa, corn with tomato, buckwheat noodles and Greek salad.  The wild salmon had a great non-fishy taste and Jeffrey (the non-seafood man) kept eating it so what does that tell you?

The scarlet quinoa is made with beets and is a lovely red color and quite tasty. 

IMG_2181 My favorite salad with the fresh corn with tomato, which I found out, was made with apple cider vinegar and cumin.  If you are craving noodles the Buckwheat noodle salad has a spicy Asian flare and will satisfy.  The Greek salad was authentic and tasty.

The out of the box choice I tried was the “Big Macro” – a whole grain burger made with vegetables, beans and veggies on a whole-wheat bun.  I don’t recommend veggie burgers since they are low in protein and high in carbs.  I was quite surprised it actually tasted like a burger and can satisfy the burger taste without meat.  However, for those with insulin resistance it does not provide enough protein.

IMG_2204-1 The big find from lunch was the “dessert.”  M Café makes a M Café Nut Bar.  The bottom “pastry” is made of ground almonds and then is topped with nuts and seeds with a very thin topping of sweetness made of a little brown rice syrup and honey.  For those with a craving for a little sweet it is amazing.  I think M Café should market and package it for kids who need a healthy dessert with protein, fat and minimal sugar.

So the next time you’re in Beverly Hills and want a healthy quick reasonable lunch try MCafé.

My rating system is below and these are the numbers.

1. Clean Food (sampled) – 4.5

2. Clean Space – 3.5

3. Friendly Staff – 5

4. Balanced proportions of protein/carb/fat – 4

5. No Food Hangover – 4.5

M Café got a 4.25/5