Pros: More than generous portions of healthy natural foods.
Cons: Small restaurant which may be crowded.
Here Comes the Sun is a small natural foods store and restaurant located in a small strip mall at 2188 NE 123rd Street in North Miami, wedged in between a few Kosher food restaurants and chachki shops, and very miss-able if you're driving by. If you're looking for a healthy alternative to the many, many pricey bistroids in faaaaaaabulous Miami, or even vegetarian options other than a meatless pasta dish or a token salad, you should take note of this address.
Here comes the Sun is nothing fancy. There is certainly 'decor', but I wouldn't say they're even remotely 'trendy' or in sync with the multitudes of architecturally 'atmospheric' eateries that abound in Miami. But, if you're looking for atmosphere, or the right place to be 'seen', this place isn't for you anyway. This is a health food restaurant. Think down-to-earth. Think 'granola'. Think 'as close to Berkeley as Miami will get'. If you fit one of these categories, then chances are you, like me, actually go to a restaurant for THE FOOD. In that case, Here Comes The Sun is our place.
The venue is a two part establishment. On one side is the restaurant, which consists of maybe fifteen to twenty tables and booths, closely gathered, with some generic ivy plants winding along the edges. Baskets of saltines and butter pats sit on the edge of the table, along with a bottle of 'Sunshine Sauce', a creamy concoction, miso based, which is a terrific multipurpose topping for your rice, salads, or whatever you'd like to season.
The other side of the business is a small natural foods market, with many options to choose from, from Vegan, macrobiotic, sugar or wheat free goodies, and multitudes of vitamins and holistic goods. If they don't have something you're looking for, just ask, they are very accommodating, as well as genuinely interested in finding new products they may not have discovered.
When you sit down in the restaurant, the second thing you'll see, after the waitress or hostess, is the menu. Lunch and dinner menus differ, but you may notice initially that it seems a bit pricey. Dinners generally start around $10, and go up. Do not preoccupy with this. When you place your order, and see the mound of food that they bring to your table, the price somehow seems an excellent value.
The menu is varied, but lends itself to all tastes. One thing that has generally bothered me about a lot of vegetarian restaurants is that they are simply that, vegetarian. If I wanted to eat vegetarian, and had a meat eater with me, that person was out of luck. Kind of like the usual vegetarian would be at an Outback Steakhouse. Here Comes the Sun is NOT a specifically 'vegetarian' restaurant. It is a 'natural foods' restaurant. They serve meats, but the meats are more organic and natural, and 'pure'. So, a carnivore and herbivore could indeed sate their appetites at the same table. Items range from Dijon Chicken Breast, Eggplant Parmagiana, Tortellini Marinara, for the more 'regular' diners, and on to Grilled Tofu and Brown Rice or the Vegetarian specialty plate, which includes lightly sauteed julienne veggies, seaweed salad, black beans and rice, for the serious healthy eaters. What I can't emphasize enough is the portion. You will not be disappointed or underfed. In fact, you'll probably have some good leftovers for lunch. To accent your meal, they offer healthy salads, several sides, and all natural fruit smoothies, or red singer tea. You probably won't have much room for dessert, but don't worry...a dish of frozen yogurt is included with your meal anyway.
They are also open for lunch, which offers most of the same menu, with some more 'lunch like' additions, and they also deliver in the area. I happen to work close enough for their delivery, and order the Turkey Burgers on a regular basis. The burgers are enormous, and come with a 'side salad', which can also be sandwich topping. Now, if you order lunch for the office, even if just two of you order, don't be shocked when the order arrives. There will probably be a few items in there that you didn't specifically order. Don't worry, they just do that. Sometimes they'll throw in a pan of rice. Maybe a soup. Maybe an iced Red Zinger Tea. But in any case, you will always find several containers of frozen yogurt mixed in the bag. The price for my Turkey Burger? $5.95. Please note that they DO tag on a delivery charge, depending on where they're going. In order to get to my workplace they must cross a toll bridge, and the toll (both ways) is included in that delivery charge. Fair people generally understand this. In all, the delivery charge is $2.50. $1.50 for the driver, and $1.00 for the tolls. The more people that order, and split the delivery, the cheaper the 'add-on' seems.
The staff is extremely helpful, and even 'fun'. Donna, one of the night waitresses is a hoot. She's helpful and efficient, and she becomes a friend by the end of the meal. They have even shocked me when I've called to order lunch. They have caller ID. I've asked to place a delivery order, and before I say anything else, they know where the food is going, and who it's going to. It may take a little longer than usual to arrive (we're not talking about the 30 min or under promise), but it's worth the wait. You will have a healthy alternative to your local McD's, extras in the bag, and a full stomach.
One side note, they are closed on Sundays, but in a pinch, you can go to another natural foods restaurant next door. It's not as good, kosher, and because of the Kosher thing, THEY'RE closed on Saturdays.
If you're in the area, hungry, and looking for a down-to-earth healthy alternative to the Miami bistroid scene, give them a call, and stop for a visit. (305) 893-5711.