Well, the last two days have been spent updating the Raw Friendly Restaurant Directory here on Eighty Percent Raw. I’m a little embarrassed to say that it’s probably been 3 years since I went through that list to check the validity of the information there…which is kind of a big deal for me, really, since my initial commitment when creating that page was to make sure that it only contained the most up-to-date raw-friendly restaurant information on the internet. I had visited several other raw food websites prior to creating this directory on EPR and found that many or most of the links on those pages were outdated with bad links or no links at all. So, needless to say, going through this list was quite disappointing for me.
So many of the restaurants that had been there previously, I discovered, have either gone out of business altogether, or have scaled back to a catering/delivery-only business format.
What is going on in the raw foods community that we can’t or choose not to support these establishments? I know that so many who embrace this lifestyle tend to complain that there are so few options for good and interesting food when we want to have a special dining out experience….Yet several of the restaurants I had to omit from my list were those that, surprisingly, looked upscale with beautiful food porn-quality photography, gorgeous atmosphere, a diverse and mouth-watering sounding menu, and even reasonable prices.
So, I’m really very sad and curious about why so many are going out of business? I wrote to one owner (spiritlandbistro.com in Santa Barbara, CA) to find out if I can get some insight as to why they closed their doors. But I’d love to hear some feedback on this from you guys. Do you think it’s pricing? Location? Quality? Visibility (people not knowing they are there), convenience (most raw foodies prefer to prepare their own?), or what? I don’t believe it is lack of interest…because I see this community growing by leaps and bounds. So, what is it, then?
I have to tell you…there was a significant number of establishments I had to cut. And as it is…there really aren’t that many raw-food-friendly restaurants out there. My next project, now that the existing list is up-to-date, is to scour for new restaurants and cafes that have sprung up since I initially created this directory. If you know of any that should be on this list, then I encourage you to leave me a comment on this post and let me know about them. I would like this list to be as comprehensive as possible so that people have a reliable resource. I only want legitimate restaurants or cafes that have a solid website presence and contact information.
I’m looking forward to hearing from all of you on this…because frankly, I’m a little boggled.
Until next time.
Hugs and Blessings,