06 March 2012

Minneapolis: Pizza Lucé

'Member those five restaurants around here that cater to vegans AND do gluten-free?  Lucé's another one.  Booyah.

Pizza Lucé: Uptown
3200 Lyndale Ave S
Minneapolis, MN  55408
(612) 827-5978

They got Lucés everywhere these days.  Downtown, Hopkins, Duluth, Seward, St. Paul, and - my personal favorite - Uptown.  It's favorite for two reasons: one, because there's this hilarious server who works there and does cool things like give me steeped chai with soymilk and a slice of orange; and two, because they bring food to my apartment door all the way down here in Linden Hills.  In other words: VEGAN PIZZA DELIVERY.  OMG.

We had a merry band at Lucé Sunday night.  Matt, Sister, Talia, and Cousin M.  Yes, M.  She's so cool, she requires only a single letter.  You know MJ from Spiderman?  What is that extra letter for, you say?  Its function is simply to denote that MJ is not as cool as straight up M.  Aw snap.

All of us were frazzled when we came in.  But we sat down and everything totally gelled.  We were at Pizza Lucé, dude.  Everything was gonna be fine.  So we did what any indulgent former stress bundles would do: we ordered garlic cheese toast.  Make that vegan, sir!

$4.59 for all those finger-lickin' yummies.  The marinara you see in the middle is really perfect.  Talia saved the extra after we finished eating the toasties so she could dip her entrée sandwich in it.  Each piece is the perfect combination of Italian spice and gooey Daiya Cheese.

Ever met Daiya?  Here's a great place to start.  It's the best vegan cheese I have ever.  EVER.  Had.  You can buy it at Whole Foods or any Co-op.  Shelley bullied the Edina SuperTarget into carrying it once, but for some reason they've since pulled it.  Lamesauce.

Matt, M, and I then proceeded to consume the most epic vegan pizza of all time: the Pizza Athena.

For $24.18, they'll make this large sucker vegan for you - the Daiya costs extra.  I mean, it's like melted gold. We got it without olives, much to Matt's chagrin.  As he mentioned, though, you wouldn't know it's not real cheese unless somebody told you; THAT's how amazing this stuff is.  And look at those artichoke hearts.  MM.  The pizza is garlicky and comforting.  We've ordered it 5,000 times before.  We love it.  And after eating it, you feel great!  It's not like those greasy pizzas that fill you up and weigh you down.  This one's (gasp!) GOOD FOR YOU.

WOW being vegan is so healthy and stuff.

Sister ordered her old standby, a GF pizza with bianca sauce (herbed olive oil with garlic) and Daiya.  $14.68.  The GF crust, more squishy and crisp than crumbly, gets a gold GF star.  Know anyone who's GF?  Chances are they already eat here because of this crust.  If they don't, they'll thank you for telling them, then hate you once they've dropped all their money on the Lucé magic.  Then, to make them like you again, tell 'em they can buy a ball of GF Lucé dough for $2.  True story.

Sister enjoys this combo because it has no colors or flavors.  Psh, really?  It has flavor.  A satisfying taste that comes from putting a few really high-quality ingredients together.  You know what I'm talkin' about.

When looking at other vegan items on the menu, I would highly recommend... well. Practically everything.
Bruschetta:  Love it.  Who cares if you drip fresh tomatoes in your lap?  Not you.  You're too busy eating delicious bruschetta.
Spinach Salad:  Without bleu cheese, yo.  Good dressing, fresh ingredients.  I love salad.
Mock Muffeletta:  Good, but a little too messy for me.  And olivey.  But that might be right up your alley!
Mock Sausage Parm:  Super satisfying with all the right flavors.
Veggieball Parm:  Meh.  I liked it, but the veggieballs are a little to fake-meat-tasting, you know?
Lil' Gracie:  LOVE.  The fake sausage has this great spicy bite to it.
Rustler:  Amazing!  Barbecue sauce on a pizza?!  Only if there are pineapples involved!  What a phenomenal flavor combo.
Peanut Butter Bar:  Little denser than a rice crispy bar, but just as crispy and WAY yummier.  With chocolate on top.  Somebody in this kitchen knows their vegan stuff.

Kay, now check this.  Molly Bar.  Vegan and GF.

No, you gotta look closer.

Shove that beautiful vegan face of yours IN THE CHOCOLATE.  Look.
It doesn't even taste GF!  Dense, moist, perfectly salted, brownie-like cubes of pure happiness.  The topping is amazingly tasty hardened fudgy layer.  Covered with MORE chocolate.  Our server set this on the table and 60 seconds later every square was making friends with our 5 stomachs... and someone who shall remain nameless but writes a blog and is vegan and whose name rhymes with O'Malley was licking the chocolate syrup off the plate.  Chuh.  Weirdo.  Who invited her?

The meal costs a bit, yes.  But it will make you SO happy.  Besides, you have scissors and a brain.  Find coupons.

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