Written by Michelle Lyn | Photography Courtesy of Plant Food + Wine
Veggies are always in vogue at this Venice wellness haven
A pioneer who revolutionizes perceptions of food through health and wellness, Matthew Kenney has made a name for himself by pushing the boundaries of high-end plant-based cuisine. His eponymous brand, Matthew Kenney Cuisine (MKC), is renowned for merging culinary art with nutrition. At Plant Food + Wine, his restaurant on Abbot Kinney, the modern space with clean lines was designed to be a communal gathering place that offers a unique experience around delicious, health-conscious food. An olive tree canopy on the patio transports guests to the Mediterranean coast, complete with an intimate wine room adjacent to fig and olive trees. Local and seasonal, the menu is enriched by an extensive wine list of organic and biodynamic varietals.
At MKC’s culinary incubator in Belfast, Maine, the brand experiments with new innovative concepts, some of which are coming to Southern California this summer. Also en route is the first-ever summer pop-up series, Arata at Plant Food + Wine Venice, taking place through August 7 at Kenney’s flagship restaurant and culinary academy space. Arata, Japanese for “fresh and new,” centers on buns, noodles and Far East-inspired fare with a plant focus. The menu for Arata was developed by Scott Winegard, chef and director of Culinary Operations for MKC, and will feature many of Arata’s star dishes from Maine, including Smoked King Oyster Buns; Arata Ramen with pulled mushrooms, baby bok choy, sea palm and corn puree; Kimchi Pancakes with Sesame Chili Sauce; Toasted Sesame Cheesecake and a Matcha Ice Cream Sandwich.
“Arata has been extremely well-received in my home state of Maine, and this is a fantastic opportunity to transport it to our west coast home in Venice,” says Kenney. “Plant Food + Wine and the MK Culinary academy in Venice have become the flagship of our brand as we have grown over this past year. As we continue to craft the future of food and create new concepts around the country, our hope is to continually bring those culinary ideas and flavors home to Venice through experimental pop-ups throughout the year—Arata is just the beginning.”
Open for lunch, dinner and weekend brunch, Plant Food + Wine offers a cutting-edge approach to plant-based cuisine. Yet, with all these wholesome veggies, don’t think you can’t indulge in something sweet. The dessert menu features decadent dishes like Blackberries + Basil, fermented berries, Thai basil pistachio gelato, white peach and lemon verbena meringue and the Chocolate Plate with brownies, bon bons and truffles.
PLANT FOOD + WINE
1009 Abbot Kinney Blvd
Venice, CA 90291