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Lemonade

Address: 1661 Abbot Kinney Blvd.
Cross Street: Venice Blvd.
Neighborhood: Venice
Phone: (310) 452-6200
Hours: Daily, 11:30AM-8PM

Health food lovers will have a field day at the new Lemonade on Abbot Kinney, which serves up vegetables, sandwiches, soups and desserts. The 3rd location of the cafeteria-style joint is centrally located to attract the hip, health-conscious, and eco-friendly Venice Beach contingent.


Just like in elementary school (but without the mystery meat), Lemonade is staffed by servers in white uniforms who scoop up all the veggies you can eat, put them in a plastic container, and send you down the line with your plastic tray. You can choose from almost 20 "marketplace meals," which include lentils, asparagus, carrots, beets, avocado, cauliflower, and a slew of other green foods your grade school self might've turned up its nose at.  


But you're a big kid now, and Lemonade covers all five food groups. If you want to keep it simple, order from the sandwich menu and add a side salad or soup for just a few extra bucks. There's also a comprehensive pot roast menu as well as some small chicken and fish dishes. We tried the herb grilled chicken on ciabatta and the roasted turkey on whole grain, and were pleased to find that the sandwiches definitely don't skimp on the meat. The ciabatta was so fresh we couldn't stop eating it, even after our stomach at capacity from the meat and aioli.  


If you take full advantage of the menu, you probably won't have room for dessert--but for those with an incessant sweet tooth there are mini red velvet cupcakes, brownies, pies, tarts and cookies as you head toward the cash register.


One last important rule of thumb:  if you go to Lemonade, you have to drink the lemonade. It comes in a variety of flavors, but you can't go wrong with strawberry, served in a tall and apparently eco-friendly cup.  


Looks like you do win friends with salad.