If you’re inclined toward vegan, organic, gluten-free foods, or just plain healthy eating, you probably know about OR Smoothie Cafe. (I’m told that the OR stands for “organic” or “original,” or both.) The place is a bit hidden in the shopping center west of Schnuck’s Richmond Heights store on Clayton Road. It’s next to Duffy’s Pub.
As you know from reading this blog, I enjoy quaint, hole-in-the-wall restaurants, where the flavors come from freshly prepared food cooked by an onsite owner. OR Smoothie is just such a place. Owner Mai Truong is a certified nutritionist and naturopathnic healer, who’s been dishing up an organic menu since 2002 and has developed a steady stream of devotees. The shelves in the dining area look like those in a health food store. Instead, of the usual stack of food magazines at the restaurant entrance, there’s one entitled Yoga and Spa.
It had been a while since I was at the Smoothie Place—as my family calls it—but late one afternoon I had an urge for something fresh, clean and healthy tasting. (I should have those urges more often.) As I waited my turn at the counter, I scanned the large, wall menu with its many choices: wraps, soups, salads, sandwiches, noodle bowls, bubble teas, lattes, smoothies, desserts.
I remembered the Spring Rolls and House Veggie Burger ($6.99) as favorites. It was late and I was hungry so, I picked the veggie burger with lettuce, tomato, onions, and sauce. It was huge, light in texture, and thoroughly satisfying. To go with the sandwich, I ordered a Mango Tango with its blend of mangoes, bananas, and oranges.
Award Winning Drinks
I didn’t get to see Mai Truong this time; she was in the kitchen. Be aware that Truong takes food dispensing seriously, so don’t expect a lot of small talk. Just be glad for all the goodness she puts into each item on her menu. The restaurant has won several “Best” awards from RFT and Alive for its Bubble Tea and Smoothies. (One variation of bubble tea is much like a smoothie, but tea flavored, and contains chewy, tapioca balls called pearls.)
As I left, I noticed that although it was mid-afternoon, there was still a steady stream of customers. At a restaurant, that’s a good sign. Here it means that people look to OR Juice and Smoothie for a health boost throughout the day.
OR Smoothie & Cafe, 6654 Clayton Rd. 6654 Clayton Road. (In shopping center west of the Richmond Hts. Schnucks. Next to Duffy’s Pub). Open: Daily: 11:30a-11p.