Ungaro Raw - don't forget your brownie!

Ungaro Raw - 656 Darling St, Rozelle, Sydney

For cosmopolitan areas like Balmain and Rozelle, the selection of vegan and vegetarian restaurants is pretty slim. On Darling St, there's Iku and About Life that have a small vegan selection so the arrival of Ungaro Raw was exactly what vegans and vegetarians had been stomping in their cruelty free shoes for.

I met a group of old workmates there for a quick lunch. There were eight of us (three vego/vegans) and luckily, there was an empty, beautiful wooden table with eight rustic, iron chairs around it waiting at the back of the restaurant for us.

The staff jumped into action and took our drink orders because we could be waiting a little while for our lunch. I ordered a green juice which arrived in record time. It was thick, delicious and just the right amount of bitterness to balance out the sweetness of the apple. The only thing I didn't like was what it was served in. You all should know about my hatred of jars and especially jars with handles.

Ungaro Raw, Rozelle - Sydney - Green juice
Green juice served in a jar with a handle - UGH!
Our main meals were served in a totally acceptable timeframe (or maybe the time flew by because we all have so much to say. All of the time). There were three raw lasagnes ordered in total, two of them looked like mine and the third looked flat and old, like it had been sitting in the sun since 10am. We questioned it and three staff rushed around to find an answer before the frustrated chef came out and was quickly ushered back into the kitchen. Feeling like I was on the set of Faulty Towers, we all had a bit of a chuckle about it but were assured the odd lasagne out was simply made earlier in the day - my initial assumption was correct.

The zucchini was crisp and in three layers, each with a different "sauce". There was a nutty flavoured hummus, a thick and spicy eggplant sauce and a runny tomato sauce all hidden between layers of baby spinach and curly carrot. I've had raw lasagne before but this is certainly the best I've tasted. The flavours were bold and the texture was chunky enough to know it was raw but smooth enough to remind you of your Mum's cooked lasagne filled with cheese and carbs.

Ungaro Raw, Rozelle - Sydney - Raw Lasagne
Raw lasagne
I later found out, Ungaro Raw has only been open for a couple of weeks, which explains the lack of consistency in the food and confusion amongst the staff. However, the foundations of a successful raw restaurant are there. The decor is simple, earthy and comfortable and the presentation of all meals was rustic in the contemporary way you'd expect. I'm keen to give this place another shot in six months to see how it has progressed.

PS. I added a brownie to my order as I paid for my meal, I recommend you do the same. zO.M.G.

Ambiance - 4/5: Organic, earthy, light and raw
Service - 2.5/5: A little weird but I'm sure the few problems we had will be ironed out in time.
Food: 7/10: A lack of consistency but my raw lasagne was the business! 

In total, Tom gives Ungaro Raw 13.5/20 chops on The Chopping Board.

Ungaro Raw on Urbanspoon

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