Seabirds Pop-Up Restaurant
Over a year ago when my food blog was still in it’s infancy, I came across a Vegan food truck called Seabirds at the Teller Food Truck Lot. At the time I avoided a Vegan Truck because I associated vegan food as boring. The Seabirds showed me I was wrong; Vegan is tasty and filling. After my first deep fried avocado taco, Seabirds became one of my favorite gourmet food trucks. Tom’s Foodie Blog original review of Seabirds truck. Times have evolved. My food blog is now established and the Seabirds are at the cusp of blowing up. Today I attended a pop-up restaurant for the Seabirds, with Stephanie Morgan, owner/head chef , taking over the kitchen at Back Bay Brewery at Whole Foods Newport Beach.
For those who are not familiar with the Whole Foods Newport Beach and Back Bay Brewery, it is one of the must experience food destinations in Orange County. See my previous blog post on this Whole Foods and the Back Bay Brewery. The menu at the Seabirds pop up at the Back Bay Tavern takes some of the favorite Sea Birds items and gives them them an upscale presentation in a sit down eating environment. Even if you are not vegan, I know you will like this food. Here is what I ordered:
If you read my blog posts in the past, you know that I am a reformed Brussels sprouts lover. Seabirds made a version with seared baby Brussels sprouts, mandarin oranges and balsamic vinegar. The Brussels sprouts had a nice toast that brought out the nutty aroma of these green balls of love. They were lightly tossed in a balsamic vinegar and dress with Mandarin oranges. The acidity from the balsamic and oranges balanced the fiber and nuttiness of the sprouts.
Butternut Squash Enchiladas
Butternut Squash Enchiladas are the Taylor Swift of the Sea Birds menu. Why is that you ask? If you order this dish on the truck it is like the pretty girl in high school that dresses down, presented in a paper dish. Although at the pop-up it was plated as it should be on white china, like the same girl who gets a makeover and is overnight the envy of all the boys. This dish appeared to be the most popular in the restaurant and drew the eyes of customers as it made its way to my table. Not only did it look good, but it tasted amazing. Butternut squash puree was wrapped in corn tortilla, lightly baked to form slightly crispy tips. The Enchiladas were then topped with a sweet cabbage and cranberry slaw. Finally it is dressed with a pepita salsa and avocado crème. The dish was also served with a mild jalapeno laced black beans. I really like the balance of sweet and mild spice in this dish.
Brownie a la mode
A vegan brownie that can compete with the best bakeries. This brownie had a flaky top and gooey center. It was topped vegan ice cream, caramel and sprinkles of large grain salt. I have never had a vegan brownie before and I was pleasantly surprised that you can achieve the same flavor without eggs.
My Final Thoughts
Today I peered through the looking glass and saw an alternate reality taking shape for the Sea Birds. In front of me were my favorite Sea Birds menu items looking elegant on china and Stephanie Morgan in a Chef’s uniform. If today’s performance is an omen for the future, Stephanie and the Sea Birds will be fighting off investors looking to fund her first brick and mortar. The Seabirds will be taking over the Back Bay Tavern at Whole Foods from Thursday 12/06/2012 to Saturday 12/08/2012. If you never tried Seabirds this is a great opportunity to experience their food in a sit down environment. If you have tried the food, I think you will like seeing your favorite Sea Bird dishes getting Taylor Swift treatment.