Healthy Eats: The Garden

March 21 2012, 10:30 AM

After 30 years of business, Kate’s at 35th Avenue has closed and reopened under new ownership. Now known as the Garden, the cafe (and soon to be farmers' market) in northeast Denver is overseen by Aleece Raw, a former marketing professional-turned-natural chef.

Raw, a relatively new convert to natural foods, pledged to eat better after several of her family members were sickened by cancer. Determined to fight disease in her family as well as offer healthier alternatives to the community, Raw opened the Garden. Her menu is based on fresh, local, organic products with plenty of vegan and gluten-free options.

However, good intentions do not always translate into great food. Raw has some refining to do before the Garden's menu reaches its full potential. As it stands, flavors are muddled in dishes such as the overly herby shepherd’s pie and under-seasoned green chile casserole. A better bet is the honey-smoked salmon salad with fresh spring greens, Haystack Mountain goat cheese, tomatoes, cranberries, and crispy walnuts.

Tip: Decompress with the Garden’s Laugh n’ Lunch Wednesdays: 45 minutes (free!) of Laughter Yoga followed by a healthy lunch buffet.

3435 Albion St., 303-321-5231