Saturday, October 5, 2013

Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge 2013 -- The Press Bistro

My husband Phil and I had dinner at the Press Bistro last night so I could try the items on their Sacramento Vegan Chef Challenge menu. We don't generally eat there, since their regular menu isn't particularly vegan-friendly, so I was looking forward to seeing how the chef would respond to the challenge of preparing vegan cuisine.

I'm happy to say the food was fabulous. The prix fixe menu included four dishes that were creatively prepared and beautifully presented, highlighting a variety of late summer and early fall produce.

The first course was a small salad made of beets, shaved fennel, watercress, and pomegranate seeds. It was delicious!

The next course was a creamy butternut squash soup, always a good choice for fall. This one was a little different than most because it was garnished with fried brussel sprouts and apples. I don't always like brussel sprouts, so I wasn't sure how I was going to feel about having them in my butternut squash soup, but their crunchy texture and smoky flavor provided a nice contrast to the silky sweetness of the soup.

The main course consisted of beautiful and very tasty orange gypsy peppers stuffed with a mixture of couscous, eggplant, olives, pine nuts, and raisins.

The meal ended with just the right amount of dessert: a small port wine poached pear, a scoop of pear sorbet, and a couple of sugared walnut halves.

This was a very satisfying meal, and I'm so glad the Press Bistro decided to participate in this year's challenge.

The Press Bistro is located at 1809 Capitol Avenue, and their phone number is 916-444-2566. The restaurant's website address is, and their Facebook page can be found at The Press Bistro is open for dinner Sunday and Tuesday through Thursday from 5:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., and on Friday and Saturday from 5:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.


Marlene Freid said...

The Press Bistro is one of our favorite restaurants in Sacramento. We have become great friends w/ the owner and he has done some fantastic vegan dishes for us. Prices are reasonable, Scott the bartender is da bomb, and we always feel special there!

Pam said...

Good to know, Marlene! I don't usually go to a restaurant if the menu doesn't have much that's vegan or can easily be made vegan because I assume I'm not the type of customer they're trying to attract. But it's nice to know they're capable of making good vegan dishes.

Dawn | KitchenTravels said...

So sorry I missed out on the Vegan Challenge this year! This menu looks wonderful. Just wanted to chime in and say that we had dinner at The Press with some friends last night, and Chef was very gracious about making a stellar (off-menu) vegan entree for me, with a variety of tastes and textures. It was great! The staff said they do this often, just ask. I do wish they would offer a vegan entree on their regular menu, but I am happy that at least they are willing to make a vegan dinner that is more interesting that a few grilled zucchini or a salad. :)

Pam said...

Thanks for commenting, Dawn. I'm glad you had a good meal at the Press Bistro. You're at least the second person who has commented about the restaurant's willingness to make a vegan entree upon request. I generally avoid restaurants that don't have anything I can order from the menu, but I'm happy that you felt welcome there.