Organic Garden Cafe aka Rawbert’s in Beverly, MA

I am not necessarily a big fan of vegan raw food. I think of it as something that goes a little far at times for my abilities and most folks abilities in a cold weather climate. If I lived in Costa Rica it may seem more feasible however. When I heard that a spot near my seaside home was picked as a Best of Boston North Shore (BONS) for brunch and it was vegan I was pretty excited. The write up was positive and discussed lots of good quality food. So I took a look at their website. It said that not only are they a cafe but they also do a volunteer program where you volunteer 5 times every 2 months for 3 hours at a time and you can learn a little about the raw food movement. This was very interesting to me. They had internships and other things but volunteering is my second love so I grabbed my mother, aunt, and cousin and headed over for a lunch time treat. If it was decent I vowed I would ask for the volunteering paperwork. I can always learn something more about vegan food and heck maybe raw is better than I think!

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When we got their we realized the space itself is a bit tiny and a little cramped but very healthy-food-centric. They had plants and painted murals of veggies. Very hipster cool. It is wedged into main street with its own parking lot and next to a comic book store and around other healthy/hippie venues. It fits. The staff was nice and friendly. We were seated quickly. The food was brought out timely and we had a good meal. I loved the crackers and cheese plate we got, the quesadillas were awesome, and the the kale chips were the same flavor as Rhythm Foods Nacho flavor. My mom and aunt got soup. My aunt loved hers as it was a carrot ginger flavor and my mom thought hers was too grainy for a corn chowder. The omelette sandwich filled me up but was a bit mushy since it was some sort of Brazil nut base and reminded me of the soft cheese on the cheese plate. I was surprised at the bagel though, it was excellent. I grabbed some chocolates to go (none of us liked those, they are not sweet and actually very strong in odor like a glass of red wine). I then decided I would ask for an application for the volunteer program.

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Unfortunately, I was met with some surprise on this portion.  Rawbert himself came out and seemed happy to chat. However he thought I was asking about the internship (which as a full time executive I do not have time for nor the need for). I stated no I was looking at the volunteer program. He said they didn’t do that anymore because it was too hard to get volunteers up to speed and they aren’t trained and they get in the way in an already overstaffed busy kitchen. So why then do they allow interns? Wouldn’t that be the same? It seems that interns pay for their spot. That is strange and I am not sure I like that. I grabbed a green juice and headed out. I am not sure I will go back. I have mixed feelings about the whole ordeal after that chat. If I had not chatted, I may have gone back but after seeing that the business is more than about the food and the joy and it is really about money. I felt uncomfortable. Veganism is just one of those subcultures where you feel like you are more about the food, the health, the morals and less about the business of it all. However, I guess that isn’t always the case. Plus isn’t free labor still free labor? Rawbert told me he would update his page and he has, however I am still bummed out. If you want to intern or take classes though for a fee I say go for it! I just can’t fit that into my life as a full time executive.

 

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Food is Love.

The Hippie Gypsy.

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