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The Dish: Sage Vegetarian Cafe

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Photo by Annie D'Amico

For me, scanning the menu at Sage is like flipping through an atlas – I see a half-dozen exotic names I need to experience. Though Persian at its core, the vegetarian cuisine that Iranian-born Homa Jahannia and her son Ramin have perfected over the past 11 years borrows from Italian, Greek and other global culinary traditions. Take Caribe, a perfectly summery Mexican/Cuban dish with a cauldron of flavorful black beans at its center. The other anchor of the meal, light-as-air saffron rice, lets the fusion of creamy avocado, grilled spicy tofu and tropical plantains shine. Accompanied with a cucumber-tomato Shirazi Salad and a hot sauce blend, Caribe was best served outdoors, where I could pretend I was lunching alfresco in an ancient plaza. Other entrees appeared just as enticing, with faraway ingredients from tempeh and tahini to saffron and cinnamon. I’ll definitely be back for another visit – no passport required. $14

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