GustOrganics’ Alberto Gonzalez on Having a Certified Organic Restaurant

In this interview, I sit down with Alberto Gonzalez, the owner of GustOrganics. What makes GustOrganics very unusual is that it is a certified organic restaurant.

While there are plenty of organic restaurants in NYC, GustOrganics is the only one that is certified as organic by a third-party certification agency, NOFA-NY.

Alberto discusses with me what it means to be certified organic, what percentage of his food is organic and what the process was like to become certified.

The fact that GustOrganics is certified clearly demonstrates his incredible commitment to organic. Well-done, Alberto! I hope many other restauranteurs follow your lead.

Sacred Chow – One of the Top NYC Organic Restaurants

In this organic restaurant review, I am presenting one of my all-time favorites in NYC — Sacred Chow.

Sacred Chow is an organic, vegan and kosher restaurant located in the heart of Greenwich Village, right near NYU. The restaurant is an true gem, and several years ago CitySearch named it the top vegetarian restaurant in NYC.

Despite the fact that I am not a vegan, I do love the vegan food that is served there. Chef/owner Cliff Preefer is an absolute genius, especially when it comes to tofu, and serves some of the most inventive and creative dishes I have ever come across.

In this video, I showcase three of my favorites at the restaurant: grilled western tofu, root vegetable latkes with Indonesian date butter and black olive seitan.

If you’re in Manhattan, definitely stop by Sacred Chow.


Sacred Chow is located at 227 Sullivan Street between West 3rd & Bleecker Street in Greenwich Village.

Organic Avenue Takes on Fashion Week

Organic Avenue, an organic take-out place that sells pressed juice, juice cleanses and raw vegan food, now has a presence at Fashion Week.

Needless to say, this is a very positive development. For the many people who work during Fashion Week (fashion journalists, buyers, models, etc.), their days consist of running from show to show to show to show with little to no time to eat well.

Organic Avenue has set up a pop-up juice bar in Lincoln Center, the new location of Fashion Week, so that these individuals can get some proper nutrition when they are on the run.

The limited menu includes: watermelon juice, coconut water, green juice (Green Love), cacao smoothies, gazpacho, lemon lime shakes and purified alkaline water.

Organic Avenue at Fashion Week is a phenomenal sight and a continuation of a very promising trend that I am seeing – organic restaurants expanding to non-traditional venues.

Stonyfield Cafe, an organic/natural cafe, set up shop at the US Open tennis tournament this year and organic food trucks are popping up all over the place.

If you are at Fashion Week at Lincoln Center and or are in the Upper West Side in Manhattan, stop by Organic Avenue’s juice bar.

It is located in the lobby at Alice Tully Hall, located on Broadway between 65th and 66th.

Gary Hirshberg, President and CE-Yo of Stonyfield, talks about the Stonyfield Cafe and Organic Food at the US Open

At this year’s US Open tennis tournament in New York City, Stonyfield had its Stonyfield Cafe outside center court where they served organic and natural food. This was the first time that I can ever remember organic food being served at a major sporting event, and I hope this becomes a regular occurrence.

At the tournament, I caught up with Stonyfield’s President and CE-Yo, Gary Hirshberg, where we talked about the the success of the Stonyfield Cafe and its future plans.

A side note: When I started livingmaxwell about ten months ago, one of my goals was to interview Gary Hirshberg. So, making this happen was a big thrill.

Not only was Gary was featured in the movie Food, Inc. but he is one of the most influential figures in the organic food movement in our country. Aside from his tremendous commitment to organic and the environment, Gary believes that business is the most powerful tool to change the world — something that I agree with 100%.

Also, many thanks to Gary’s wife, Meg Hirshberg (a fellow Brown University alum), who did a great job shooting this segment.

Rockin' Raw in Brooklyn – Video Restaurant Review

Here is my very first video restaurant review.  On this trip, I crossed the bridge (actually I took the subway, which goes underneath the water) over to Brooklyn to check out Rockin’ Raw.

As the name explains, Rockin’ Raw is a raw food restaurant with a very distinct twist to it. The cuisine is a combination of New Orleans/Peruvian/Creole all wrapped into one.

A lot of times you go to raw food restaurants and you see many of the same dishes.  Not here. There were items on the menu that I had never seen before and probably won’t again.

Key highlights:

– Unique, interesting dishes.  Many items were brand new to me and I’ve eaten at my fair share of raw food restaurants all over the country.

– Very spicy. If you like hot, this is your place.

– Excellent service. The waiter even played cameraman for me in the opening shot on the street. Read more »