What could be better than an independently owned neighborhood cafe that is open 24 hours a day with clearly marked vegan menu options and raw vegan chocolate cake in the cooler? Nothing, that’s what. Cafe Coco is one of my all-time favorite restaurants in Nashville and I’m really surprised that I haven’t featured it yet. There is nothing not to love about this place, from the decor featuring local artists to the friendly vibe to the helpful staff to the fabulous food. The patio is amazing when the weather is nice (which it wasn’t on this visit). If you haven’t been there yet, go right now. Don’t even finish reading this post, just go. You can thank me later.
Pictured above are the appetizers of champions: hummus plate and chips & salsa. Cafe Coco has my favorite salsa in the city, hands down. It is so good. If you’re thinking about getting a side of it with your meal, stop. You need more salsa than that. Get the appetizer so your salsa needs can be fully met. The hummus is nothing to sneeze at though I could hardly say it’s the best in town. Still, it’s really thick and the plates shown above can make a substantial meal by themselves–but why stop there?
It seems that Cafe Coco’s “soup of the day” is always Three Bean Vegan Chili … but I’m not complaining! This stuff is good. It is just spicy enough to warm you up when it’s cold without being so spicy that you don’t want to eat it. I recognize kidney beans and black beans, not really sure what the third bean is but I don’t really care because it’s delicious. It is a little more watery than I like my chili, but for whatever reason it works. I recommend crumbling up those multi-grain crackers and adding them directly to the chili for maximum chili enjoyment.
The cake is a new addition. Cafe Coco has long had tempting-looking (dairy-laden) desserts in a cooler case near the register. Imagine my surprise to peer into this case and view RAW VEGAN CAKE. I wish I had written down the name of the woman who makes the desserts, but I didn’t, so if you go there check on that for me and let me know what it is so I can update this post. I was speaking with my cashier about the addition of vegan cake and she told me the dessert woman recently took a raw foods cooking class and is now really into making raw desserts. Kudos to her because this cake is A-MAZ-ING. It was so rich I almost couldn’t eat it (note I said “almost.”) It took a couple days to eat the whole slice. The next time you’re there, grab a slice. Don’t think about it, just do it.
If you haven’t been to Cafe Coco before you’re missing out. In addition to the above foods, I also really like “The Skinny” which is a hummus and vegetable wrap–just omit the cheese and pesto. Plus, it’s open 24 hours a day! And there’s free delivery at lunch time! WOW!
210 Louise Avenue
Nashville, TN 37203