Since many of my friends eat only healthy food and several are vegetarians, I am always happy when I find a restaurant where carnivores and vegetarians can both be happy eating together. I had a great lunch yesterday with several of my vegetarian and omnivore friends at Tender Greens in Culver City. Although the restaurant is easy to miss, it is worth looking for it (it's next to Ugo, which is easy to find); there is no parking in front of the restaurant, but there is free 2 hour parking in the public lot behind Bank of America. With a comfortable outdoor patio, a friendly staff, and fresh menu of both raw and cooked foods, Tender Greens has all the ingredients for a delicious meal; add to that very reasonable prices of about $10 for everything on the menu (you order at the counter, and carry your own tray to you table) and everyone ends up happy.
I chose the Ahi Nicoise salad (several slices of nicely seared Ahi, fresh haricots verts, fingerling potatoes, kalamata olives, and a tasty vinaigrette, dressing baby greens), one of my friends opted for the grilled vegetable salad, another got the baby spinach salad, and the other non vegetarian go the Chinese chicken salad; it was a warm day so salads were the preference of the day, but they serve nice "hot stuff" too, like grilled Angus flank steak with Yukon gold mashed potatoes. For raw food lovers, they even have a raw plate with eight vegetables and raw nuts served with a living vinaigrette. Everyone enjoyed their meal (we all cleaned our plates) and no one had room for dessert, but that just means we'll have to go back...darn!