Restaurant Review: Sun In Bloom

Sun In Bloom
460 Bergen Street
(between 5th Avenue and Flatbush Avenue)
Boerum Hill, Brooklyn

Vegiboys Rating (3/4)

We took a recent weekend trip to Boerum Hill to visit the neighborhood’s Sun In Bloom. Having replaced the Organic Heights bakery/restaurant in early 2010, Sun In Bloom has a wide ranging menu from breakfasts to dinners, and we joined a brunch crowd to test out a late morning meal.

The space provides for a clean, fun environment: calming white tones and natural wood stains carry through most of the uncluttered interior design. This isn’t to say that the space isn’t fun though – a New Age library adorned the wall behind our table; while waiting for our order, we perused volumes on topics like spiritual nutrition and the miracle of fasting. Little touches like water served in Mason jars and polished stones used as check paperweights also added just enough bohemian feel to make the place seem down-to-earth without transcending the boundary into a stereotypical Brooklyn hipster-ness.

While the breakfast menu looked delicious (many of the patrons surrounding us were placing orders for the pancakes and scrambles), we chose from their standard menu of sandwiches and wraps.

But first, the drinks: a lemonade was fair, but nothing overly exciting – no sweetness, sourness, nor citrus taste really stood out. A nut milk was also underwhelming; the taste and texture was very watery, and the unmodified taste of slightly bitter cinnamon dominated.

Despite this flat first impression, the arrival of our starter quickly had SIB back in the game. Brian considers himself a particular connoisseur of kale chips, and Sun In Bloom’s rendition was superb. Rather than baked or fried, the kale had been dehydrated, preserving its distinctive flavor and avoiding any heaviness from oil. Rather than going with the traditional seasoning of salt, the chips were sweetened with a wonderfully mysterious marinade (possibly with a shoyu base).

For the main courses, a TLT (tempeh, lettuce, and tomato) sandwich was simple but tasty; surprisingly substantive for the simplicity of its ingredients. A Reuben sandwich also had a “meat” of tempeh, but was flavored with a house-made Russian dressing and a mountain of live sauerkraut. Both were perfect portion sizes for a lunch, and even as a first meal of the day it left us feeling satisfied.

We chose a raw dessert from their refrigerator: a chocolate torte with a nut cream topping was tasty, if not quite as exciting as the kale or the sandwiches. Wide selections of baked goods were also available as desserts or for stand-alone snacking. The staff was very helpful in helping to guide us through the available options, and in making recommendations for us first time diners.

As a final note, this self-identified “eco-eatery” prides itself in sustainable restaurant practices; a practice that always earns points from us. At $21 each, we would have hoped for a bit more flair to the food and the experience, but overall the meal was consistently good, and Sun In Bloom has really given Boerum Hill a great space for the vegetarian crowd.

Food (3/4)
Atmosphere & Service
Value (3/4)

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