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Best Place to Convince Out Of Towners That We're A Bit Different 

Café Gratitude

If you're hosting relatives — especially cynical East Coast food snobs or meat-loving Midwesterners — you simply must make a trip to Café Gratitude. Out-of-towners can find exactly what they're looking for in the "authentic" Berzerkeley experience. It's not just the all-raw, vegan menu of Gratitude that makes it so noteworthy (although the food is creative, delicious, and healthy), it's the off-the-wall names of the dishes, all beginning with "I am [insert modifier here]." Example: Want a Ceasar salad and a raw pesto pizza served on buckwheat-sunflower flatbread crust? Look the waitress straight in the eye and say "I am dazzling and I am sensational." Not only will she not crack up, but she'll show up soon after with a plate of delectable raw food and a "question of the day" designed to inspire self-reflection. Then your friends can go back to Kansas and tell everyone how strange Berkeley folks really are. It's hard to be too cynical about Café Gratitude, though, because the food is incredible enough to merit how silly you feel ordering it. If you have room for only one thing here, make it dessert: either the cashew cream cheesecake ("I am cherished") or the raw cacao mousse ("I am magnificent").

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