On Sunday morning we checked out a store that I've read about and have wanted to go to for a while: the Essene Market & Cafe
Lo and behold, we discovered that this place is AWESOME!!!!
They carry all manner of fresh, organic and natural foods, as well as natural household and beauty products; vitamins and supplements; clothing; books and magazines; food prep appliances; and much more. They also host lectures, cooking classes and massage therapy.
Here is a picture (taken with my cell phone, so please forgive the poor quality) of some of their raw cacao, flaxseed and other superfoods:
More raw food appeared at every turn! For example, raw trail mix:
And check it out - a large selection of raw food books:
In the rear of the store is the cafe. The menu items mostly fall into the cooked vegetarian category, but I did notice an ample supply of fresh greens:
Rob had broccoli frittata, brown rice, mushrooms (not sure whether they were marinated or sauteed . . . hmm), coffee and wheatgrass juice from the cafe, and enjoyed them all immensely - well, except for the wheatgrass juice, which he downed like a trooper. Meanwhile, I investigated the prepared raw foods case around the corner from the cafe:
PREPARED RAW FOODS!!!!! This is the first time I have encountered anything of this nature in Philadelphia, where there are cheesesteaks on every block but a distinct dearth of healthy food in general, never mind raw food in particular. Here is a scrumptious-looking slice of raw pizza from Rawlifeline
And here is an intriguing raw spinach quiche from Awesome Foods
Another display featured flaxseed crackers, "cheeze" sticks and other raw snacky foods, also from Awesome Foods:
So what did I have to eat, given all of these appealing raw choices?
Believe it or not, I passed it all up. I have made a pledge to myself to conduct a green smoothie cleanse this week (more details to come), and I stuck with it even in the face of such raw temptation. Yeah baby! But rest assured, I'll return to partake in those raw goodies.
Rob was so delirious with ecstasy at finding this wonderful store that he commenced a raw-incarnate striptease in one of the aisles:
Well, ok, not quite. But he did exclaim "I have died and gone to heaven!!" and then suggested that we book the cafe for our wedding reception - which is *almost* as enthusiastic a reaction as a striptease, right? :)
To conclude: should you ever find yourself in the South Street area of Philly, don't miss this place. You'll be as glad that you went as we are.Essene Market & Cafe
719 South 4th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19147
(215) 922-1146 phone
(215) 922-5150 fax
Open 7 days, 9am-8pm; Wed & Fri until 9pm