by Mr. Wonka
Brooklyn, New York
November 28, 2004
As we stepped down through large, red velvet curtains, the unmistakable scent of "healthy" engulfed us: healthy people eating healthy food... and spending a healthy wad of cash to do it. We avoided what looked to be a 10-minute wait on a Friday night by making reservations, and were seated at a small two-top near the front that stayed surprisingly warm despite the cold weather that crept in whenever the door was opened. Brick walls, low ceilings, and candlelit tables created a cozy atmosphere, while a night mural with stars and a crescent-shaped moon mirror brought to mind granola, dreamcatchers, and hacky sacks. Luckily, there would be no Phish, String Cheese Incident, or other jam bands pumped over Caravan’s in-house system, which instead rolled out a soothing amalgam of jazz, swing, and big band covers. Hey, I love me some big band, but the cover of The Doors’ "Light My Fire" was a little over the top.
Deciding on just one dish from Caravan’s book-length menu was daunting. Broken down into multiple categories, the fare runs the gamut from fruit smoothies and organic salads to raw entrees and open-faced sandwiches. After some deliberation we finally settled on the Live Love Boat ($11), nutty "meatballs" served with jicama and napa cabbage, for our appetizer. I chose Angel’s Pesto Pizza ($17) for my entree, while my beautiful companion went with the Ravioli of the Day ($17), which today was spinach. We also sipped on a liter of sangria that, while tasty, seemed to be cut with only juice instead of liquor.
I thought the server had brought the wrong dish... silly me! I should have known that Caravan of Dreams would take an untraditional approach to pizza! With mounds of fresh vegetables and grilled seitan piled high atop sourdough crust smothered in pesto sauce, this was probably the most non-pizza pizza I’ve ever had. I also snaked a few bites of ravioli, which was covered in a creamy almond alfredo sauce that matched well with the slices of avocado and leaves of chard that lined the dish. We topped it off with a decadent serving of Rice Dream Mocha Pie ($7).
The food was pretty good, the service was pretty good, and the prices were pretty reasonable... but we both left with upset stomachs for whatever reason. Hey, nothing an herbal supplement, a dog pose, and some Chopra philosophy can’t cure, right?
From journal The Big Apple... and Beyond!