There are days when you wake up, feeling the need for a sense of renewal. With the stress from work, relationships, personal struggles within yourself – a break is needed every once in a while to silence it all. Cosmic Café is one of my favorite places to do that. It’s a place where you leave all worries at the door and prepare to be whisked away to another spiritual dimension.
After a strenuous workout at Padma Yoga, owner Sonya Pepping and I decided there was no better way to extend our yogi euphoria than treating ourselves to a vegetarian lunch at Cosmic Cafe. Situated right across the street from the Post Office on Oak Lawn, this vegetarian restaurant doesn’t just cater to “die-hard” vegetarians but caters to a crowd of all ages; just bring your imagination, let out a deep long sigh and start your relaxation with a big heaping mug of their endless signature Chai Tea (also available with soy for vegans).
The food is simple: straight forward Indian-based vegetarian dishes with a dash of Mediterranean. All dishes are under $10 and you always leave the meal feeling light yet satisfied; my favorite being the Cosmic Stir and The Buddha’s Delight. The Buddha’s Delight is a smorgasbord of Cosmic’s signature treats – curried veggies, their perfectly fried samosas, a spiced dahl with pappadam for dipping, and rice and nan as accompaniment. The Cosmic Stir is simply beautiful – bursting with color and flavor, this vegetable tofu stir-fry is cooked with a savory coconut pineapple curry that’ll leave you smiling for days.
Sonya ordered the Portobello Trance – Portobello mushrooms with spinach and onions sautéed in a garlic-basil butter sauce served on nan with cream cheese and tomatoes. This hearty combo can even satisfy the most carnivorous meat eater – the earthiness of the Portobello swimming in the garlic-basil butter suddenly leaves you in a “Yum” state of mind. Not only does Cosmic Café offer vegetarian fare but during the week and weekends they offer spiritual classes ranging from laughing yoga to meditation courses. It’d be the perfect place for anyone to unwind on a Sunday morning.
Head over to the Cosmic Café to find out more information on days and times.While waiting for the food, take the time to take in the colorful, playful details ranging from the delicate mosaic designs on the tables made from lentils and assorted beans, to the exquisitely ornate and detailed paintings covering every inch of the walls. When the weather is nice outside, the outside patio is the spot to be. Be sure to check out the private cove with a table for two located on the balcony for couples and the magnificent murals and wooden birds flying over the tables that capture bits and pieces of the glittering sunlight – it naturally becomes a beautiful moment in your day.