Start every day the right way at Loma Portal café

by Amy Devito

Antonio Zaragoza, Photo Editor
Antonio Zaragoza, Photo Editor

Tucked away on the busy drag of Rosecrans Street, a quaint café can be found boasting healthy plates, vegan wraps and exotic flavors. Stripped down to its earthy core, Naked Café advocates nutritious and well-balanced meals for breakfast and lunch. The menu focuses on feel-good food with the environment and sustainability in mind. The healthy, earth-conscious sandwiches, quesadillas, soups and salads, along with the harmonious, zen-like aura of the café, bring a peaceful hippie ambiance to each table.

“At the end of the menu you’ll notice the word ‘namaste,’ which means general well-being, which is what we are trying to achieve from the atmosphere to the food,” general manager of Naked Café in Point Loma Chris Trenner said. “We want a well-being in all directions.”

Even though the vibes reverberating from the scene give off a relaxed yoga-esque atmosphere, this café has more class than a casual coffee hot spot. Set up as a formal restaurant, staff and servers offer welcoming hospitality and down-to-earth feel.

The walls are also adorned with crafty and beautifully moving art pieces. Even before the food is brought out, a wave of sublimity strikes as the tranquil setting establishes a calm mood.

Although focused on organic and naked food options, the menu offers a wide variety of plates and flavors with several alternative options to accommodate customers’ appetites.

Combinations of strong spiciness and fresh vegetables offer unique variation for curious taste buds. Tofu, eggs and greens such as artichokes, spinach and lotus root are prominent ingredients on the menu.

“All of our dishes have diverse flavors that pull the best aspects from different regions of food, creating a unique blend and offering a greater variety of tastes for the guests to enjoy,” Trenner said.

The Naked Café offers delectable whole foods, but proves to be both healthy and hearty with large portions that leave every customer walking out feeling full and nourished. Many items are gluten-free, organic and vegetarian while blending fresh herbs, robust flavors and balanced nutrients.

For breakfast, an organic whole grain pancake with roasted grains, sliced almonds, golden raisins and fresh bananas brings a whole new meaning to the words stacked and scrumptious.

Infused dishes such as “THE OM,” which is served with lotus root, shiitake mushrooms and tofu, and the “Dual Delight,” which incorporates sesame ginger beef and chicken, summer veggies and Thai peanut sauce, are packed full of spice. However, they are also excellently balanced with all sorts of sweet flavorings.

“I love these kinds of places where the food is packed full of flavor but also leaves out the regretful feelings you get after eating fatty, greasy dishes,” kinesiology junior Jennifer Leung said. “Usually organic and vegetarian food leaves you feeling less satisfied, but not here. Also, I love the feel of the atmosphere. With the peaceful undertones, it’s all very cool and trendy.” Custom-built sandwiches and wraps also allow plenty of options for guests, with a “trifecta” allowing a plethora of different menu items to be served on one plate.

The café also bakes carrot zucchini bread and other whole grain loaves and has a variety of coffee, latte, chai and tea drinks.

“People walk out of the café feeling good, they love the food and the way they feel after they indulge in their healthy side,” Trenner said.

Next time, instead of opting for a breakfast of sky-high stacks of fatty bacon, stop by this conscientious cafe at 3555 Rosecrans St. and get naked.