After hustling around the house all morning, my husband and I took an hour and a half drive to check out a Potential New Project. After the Potential New Project was promoted to For Sure New Project, we zoomed off with it loaded in the back of our truck and drove for another hour and a half toward home. We also stopped a couple of places to acquire supplies while I tried my hand at being an impromptu sportscaster for someone unable to watch the 49ers-Cowboys game.
When we got home, we caught the end of the game, I did my Sports Wrap Up for my devoted audience of one, and we got to work scrubbing and sanding and constructing and carpeting. Yes, carpeting. It’s a doozy of a project, but we’ll save those details for another day. It was getting dark when we called it a night, and I’m plumb tuckered out tonight, MoFo-ers. What a day. What a week!
One thing that we don’t really have in our neck of the woods is convenient restaurant options. Eating out is always a special treat for us because it’s so rare that it happens. But today, travel took us to places afar. In addition to acquiring the For Sure New Project in yonder Bay Area, we were fortunate enough to have time to stop and check out a new restaurant along the way. While planning our day, we’d discovered this new vegan place had recently opened in San Ramon. We decided to make a well-deserved stop there to refuel our tanks.
I loved the change of pace and the personality of the place, a restaurant called Baagan, which was nestled into a busy little shopping center on San Ramon Valley Boulevard.
Baagan opened in San Ramon last month. They already have a well-liked restaurant in Roseville and a reputation for great food. Reviews on Yelp were a bit mixed primarily because the shop has only been open for a few weeks and is still finessing some aspects of the business. We knew we’d be getting great vegan food, but we weren’t sure what to expect beyond that.
From the start, Baagan’s unique atmosphere and menu surprised us. The woman that met us at the counter was friendly and knowledgeable. She recommended some menu options for us and struck up a conversation with me about my Animal Place t-shirt. After we placed our orders, another employee also asked us how we were and engaged us in friendly conversation.
The atmosphere is different from other restaurants. Someone in a review labeled the décor as stark, but that’s the wrong word. It’s clean. The walls are painted with fresh colors and very little art is on the walls. Most of the tables are white squares with glass tops and the vinyl and metal chairs have clean lines. The overall atmosphere feels welcoming and calming.
The food served at Baagan is organic, non-gmo, and soy-free. Many of the menu items are also gluten free, but be sure to check with the staff to be certain that you choose well for your specific dietary needs.
In addition to teas and smoothies (and, yes, the smoothies are pricey, but I’ve read they’re excellent), there is self-serve filtered water available. You can choose to dine in or eat out. Either way, prepared food is delivered to a pick up window and the customer picks up his or her own order and brings it to the table. When finished, customers clear their own tables. Although some may find that unusual, it felt appropriate to the atmosphere and allowed us to leisurely eat and chat without pressure from a wait staff.
We ordered the Baagan Veggie Burger and the Grilled Veggie Quesadilla. The food arrives on large square plates without adornment. Displayed this way, the food feels like a showpiece, a piece of art to relish and enjoy. It didn’t seem like very much food, but the plates are large and the food is filling and excellent.
The Baagan Veggie Burger is made on site from sprouted chana beans and fresh veggies. The taste is subtly spicy. It’s very tender and easy to eat, almost melting in your mouth. The flavor is excellent and even the bun was toasted just enough to add texture without drying out the bread.
I was worried that after the burger the quesadillas would be a letdown. They looked so simple on the plate; I couldn’t imagine they’d be as satisfying as the burger. Boy, was I wrong.
The quesadillas are spicy and filled with yummy sliced veggies. Both my husband and I devoured them along with the salad that accompanied them. Although we’d intended to try the vegan cheesecake, we we’re too full when we were done. We’ll definitely get that next time! I know we’ll be going back soon.
San Ramon is out of the way for us, but Baagan has the most incredible hours I’ve seen in a long time. They’re open Monday thru Saturday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. It’s probably a good thing it is out of the way for me. If I lived too close, I’d be there at some point every day. If you live in the area, make time to check it out. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did.
There’s a cool breeze scooting through my room and I keep creeping closer to my bed. I’m on the floor with my rabbit girl right now. Once she’s done proofreading this, I’m hoping we’ll hop into our beds and sail off to sleep. Tomorrow we welcome week two of VeganMoFo. It’s also a work and school night, and everyone from bloggers to bunnies needs to rest up for next week’s adventures, whatever they may be.
So, sleep well, MoFo-ers. Happy Sunday. May we all dream happy dreams tonight. Good night.