In the core of an urban industrial neighborhood in downtown Los Angeles is a vibrant café located in a redeveloped alley. The Daily Dose is an attractive garden open air gem, laid with a red brick pathway, live greenery scaling the corridor, strings of round bulb lights, and a chandelier breathes energy with conscious cuisine into the concrete jungle.
Daily Dose owner, Sarkis Vartanian sources ingredients locally, and has a vision that moves beyond his restaurant business. He pursues his passion, seeking to make organic produce more accessible to the community by advocating an Urban Industrial Farm concept in Downtown LA.
I was first introduced to a food tasting to Daily Dose by a southern California food blogger group. Sarkis shares that all of the food is mainly organic except for the bread. Inspired by his upbringing, Sarkis promotes “honest food.” What is honest food exactly? He explains, “The food our grandparents used to make… I am sure you remember when you were much younger remember when your family used to get together? That was honest food… no nonsense no processed food, NO MSG. ingredients that an average child can pronounce.”
Sarkis shares that they obtain produce from the South Pasadena, Echo Park, and Atwater Village farmers markets. Now many farmers deliver directly to him. Additionally, he has an 8-acre farm in Temecula “we grow tomatoes, herbs and some fruits… next year hope to get 20% of our produce from there. All of our duck and goose eggs come from my ranch, and some of my heritage chicken eggs.”
Bringing fresh food to an area, where it isn’t available. Sarkis believes, “The Daily Dose was conceived with the notion that ‘every human has the right to organic good healthy food. We believe that it’s not complicated to feed the masses… as we embrace localism. It’s better for the environment and much more easily manageable.’” Their food concept and methods are brilliant for the body, bringing conscious healthy food to your finger tips for an affordable price. They make all items from scratch and do not use sugar in their cooking. Sarkis shares they make their own salad dressing and create fresh juices in their own kitchen.
Inspired by the working man, their cuisine is made in honor of these and names menu items like the Butcher, Tailor, Mike the Mechanic (Sarkis’s father) and The Farmer. Daily Dose features a monkey in a suit as their logo. Sarkis explains that “Food For us By Us. Mike D, our Monkey represents the average working man ‘Monkey in a Suit’ so we decided that we dedicate our menu items to the average working man/woman who is like us.”
Our food blogger group had the opportunity to sample various items from the menu, including the special of the day. My favorites from the tasting included:
The Farmer – A vegan sandwich that was a definite crowd pleaser (roasted squash, heirloom potatoes, avocado, heirloom tomatoes, house veggie patty, buratta, pesto & ancho chili jam on olive bread)
The Guildsmith – The Daily Dose version of the grilled cheese sandwich and satisfies your fat and cheese craving the healthy way (Pan-fried akawi cheese, avocado, tomato, serranos, feta, arugula, & sauce verte on a ciabatta)
The Jive Turkey – a delicious turkey sandwich with a nice composition of textures and diverse flavors (Fra’mani turkey galantine, mustard, pepato, tomato, sprouts, & ancho chili jam on ciabbata.)
Quinoa & Kale Salad – A fresh salad with lemony citrus dressing.
Special Lamb Stew with a Fried Egg on top. A hearty stew with tender lamb and deliciously rich flavor without the fat.
Cappuccino – the coffee drink had a delicious aroma and flavor. Nicely topped off with a lovely design by the barista.
Earl Grey Iced Tea and Hibiscus Iced Tea – I enjoyed the early grey iced tea, though the hibiscus was a bit on the tart side for me.
I felt great drinking their “life-support juices” and both were equally tasty:
White Juice – A yummy blend of fresh coconut and coconut water, raw almond and almond water, banana, dates, raw honey.
Green Juice – Crisp, refreshing juice, I could get used to consuming a lot of this blend with apple, pear, kale, spinach, ginger, dates, cashews, fresh orange and lemon juice.
Es Todo, New Food Truck/Temporary Structure: In addition to Daily Dose, Sarkis will be debuting a featured food truck down the street from the café. Sarkis explains that Es Todo isn’t a mobile truck, but a temporary food stand and alternative example for business entrepreneurs and chefs to consider without forking out all the costs that a brick and mortar facility entails. You can find more about Es Todo on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/
Urban Industrial Farm: Sarkis takes his vision of offering honest food up another notch, as he is one of the key individuals spearheading an Urban Industrial Farm proposed on the old railroad track area in the arts district. Still undergoing the approval process through the city, this Urban Industrial Farm could provide so many benefits to the surrounding community including to easier access to organic produce, jobs, fighting obesity, nutritional education, and more.
Coming soon – Look for a recipe provided by the Daily Dose owner on Hautenosh.com
For more information on Daily Dose log on to their web page at www.dailydoseinc.com or follow them on Facebook.