If it weren’t for the huge line twisting & winding down the sidewalk, you might not see “Aroma” as you drive through Tujunga Village in Studio City. Tucked away like a garden oasis, Aroma draws huge crowds at every hour of the day. Standing in line was well worth the wait for an experience my friend Amanda has told me I was missing!

We had enough time while standing in line to really look over the menu and decide. Amanda is also vegetarian, so it was fun to be out with someone in roughly the same boat as me. My favorite part of Aroma was the atmosphere. When you leave the main cafe to find a seat, you wander through what used to be the yard of the house Aroma occupies. The homey & quaint atmosphere of the garden is the perfect setting for a lunch out with girlfriends, but would also be a trendy & casual setting for a professional lunch, meeting with clients, etc. You get the idea! There’s no reason to scratch Aroma off your list no matter what company you are keeping.

Aroma’s website provides a link to their menu for download, but below is a short list of a few of the vegetarian items they have on the menu. For specific information on ingredients and whether certain items are vegan, you will definitely need to ask your server.

Vegetarian Lunch/Dinner Menu Items:
* asian noodle salad
* goat cheese + walnut salad
* chopped salad
* wild rice + tofu salad
* aroma house salad
* grilled vegetable panini
* brie + apple panini
* caprese press (panini)
* veggie reuben
* aroma veggie burger
* veggie wrap
* tofu rice bowl
* grilled cheese
* hummus + toast + veggies
* sautéed vegetables
* warm brie plate
* mediterranean plate
* antipasta rustico

Not too shabby: 18 vegetarian (some items include cheese) items, not including all the sides & extras they offer! The best part was, when I stepped up to the counter to order, I was given a couple of choices of non-dairy milks for my latte, and reassured that the wild rice + tofu salad did not (and would not) contain any dairy.

Yup, folks, you read that right, I ordered a salad. Why? Well… I was out shopping for wedding dresses & quite frankly over indulging didn’t appeal to me! I did not want to feel tubby, full & uncomfortable while trying on dresses. So, a salad made me feel a little less guilty. Although this salad was so huge I don’t know that I could have eaten the entire thing even if I had been starving myself for days to fit into a Victorian corset!

Or so I thought… by the time I got home, I wasn’t feeling so great. There are a couple of things that spring to mind whenever I have stomach distress after a salad, the first question is the quality of the greens, the second question is regarding the cleaning of the leaves, and the third is the ingredients of the dressing. I was reassured that the dressing, also, would not contain dairy or egg, so there was only one last thing to point my finger at: the surface on which the tofu was cooked. Cross contamination is a tricky subject for us vegans. Some people, like me, suffer at the slightest hint of cross contamination, others experience no effect.

Despite my little mishap with the salad (which has frightened me back into “Salad Avoidance Mode”) Aroma is a great place for Veg*ns to dine. Order a coffee. Check out some of the baked goods. Have a tea. Whatever your mood, Aroma can satisfy!

coffee & tea company
4360 Tujunga Ave.
Studio City, CA 91604

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