Wednesday, 30 November 2016

The Bare Food Co

Wandering Drogheda on a dreary-looking day, Tammy and I were fed up with banks and their sh!t policies and even worse customer service. I swear I feel like writing a rant on the obtuse policies of obtaining a bank account in Ireland at some point instead, but luckily our lunch stood out as a great alternative topic of conversation.

Off to the side, we saw a sign that said "Bare Food Co." and Tammy immediately said she'd recognized the name because a friend recommended it. Apparently they had some gluten-free and dairy-free options or something. So, we decided to take a gander and investigate for ourselves.

As we walked in, there was a small take-away section where you could grab a fresh-pressed juice, a sandwich, and coffee (among other things). It looked pretty Vancouver-hipster-esque, like a small shop in the Mount Pleasant area. Needless to say, it felt kinda like home.

We opted to sit in, and we each took a look at the menu. Tammy was feeling more like something handheld, while I was in the mood for comfort grab-a-spoon-or-fork-and-stuff-it-in-my-face kind of food.

Honey Chicken Sandwich @ The Bare Food Co
Drogheda, Co. Louth, Ireland
Photo: Brewji

Tammy ordered the Honey Chicken Sandwich, without cheese as we're both intolerant to dairy products. It's served on gluten-free bread, which is a plus because in Canada you'd normally have to pay a premium of 2 to 4 dollars for some store-bought crap bread. At Bare Food (as well as most of Drogheda so far), there is no premium for being born with the inability to digest something.

While her sandwich did arrive with cheese, we were too tired of dealing with things from the day to say anything about it. Lucky for her, Comte cheese is very low in lactose and didn't produce too much bloating. That, and it added extra texture and taste to the sandwich (yes, I had a bite) that made it taste absolutely delicious.

Red Curry, with added Chicken @ The Bare Food Co
Drogheda, Co. Louth, Ireland
Photo: Brewji

I on the other hand, ordered the Red Curry and added chicken to it. It ended up being a Thai curry, and it was both gluten and dairy free. I remember just the smell driving me wild with excitement. It had been so long since I'd had any sort of Thai curry. Let me just say, this dish is packed with flavour. I had so much going on with my taste buds, including a kick of heat. Lucky for me, the heat was just at my threshold for spice, which meant it didn't really hurt my Crohn's at all.

Tammy also ordered an Americano, which turns out was kind of blah. She said it wasn't anything special.

Now, let's fast-forward about a week. Yes, a week.

The two of us decided to meet up with Tammy's friend who she hasn't seen in years. Today, we each got the same dish. We initially wanted the smoked cod, served with coconut daal and Indian pesto, but the server came back after about 15-20 minutes (they were super busy) and let us know that the cod hadn't come in that day and they couldn't serve the dish. Instead, she offered us the other fish special that day which included haddock, served with a chorizo and bean casserole. We appreciated her letting us know, and double-checked that the special was gluten and dairy-free. Sold!

In addition, we each had an Americano. This time around, I thought it was quite delicious. Tammy agreed. She said this time was like a night-and-day difference. I'll give them the benefit of the doubt here; I'm sure their Americanos were always great and we just let the stress get to us the last day. They even gave us some almond milk with our drinks and didn't charge us for it! Vancouver, your shops could learn a thing or two from this place. Dear Vancouver: We shouldn't have to pay premiums for being born with food intolerances.

Back to the entrée -- I'm not really a fish person. Usually I get my fish deep-fried with a set of chips and gravy. However, this was moist, flavourful, and gone pretty quickly. We were so hungry I didn't even get a picture. Granted, it took like 45 minutes to eventually get our food because of the "no cod" situation, and they were in the middle of lunch rush. There's usually no time for pictures when the stomach becomes hangry.

Instead, I got some shots of the menu while we waited. Keep in mind, Vancouverites -- all these prices include tax, and people don't really tip in Europe. Why? Because they get paid enough to live by their employers; not the equivalent of €7.20 per hour, only to pay $1000 per month to share a small apartment with two other people. This means what you see is what you pay, case and point.

What else can I say? We'll be back.

We really enjoy this place. The food is delicious and affordable. The service is always friendly, even during a rush. The bathrooms are also very clean, which is a plus for the both of us. I'm really looking forward to trying one of their fresh-pressed juices next time. Either that or a steak sandwich...depends on how I feel I guess.

Tammy gives the Bare Food Co. a can't-wait-til-next-time 8.5 / 10
I give the Bare Food Co. a just-keep-putting-stuff-in-my-mouth-my-wife-is-okay-with-it 9.0 / 10

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