Brown, white, sticky or fried, it’s indisputable that rice is awesome. I’ve always known that, but it seems that everyone else has finally figured this out. In case you haven’t noticed, rice bowls are hot. From vegan to BBQ beef and healthy to not-so-healthy, rice bowls are making their way onto menus all over the Seacoast area. And just like JT at Mickey D’s, I’m lovin’ it. I’ve had the pleasure of experiencing quite a few rice bowls at various cafes and restaurants throughout the Seacoast, and I’m hear to share the delicious results with you.
So without further ado, here are my Top 4 Rice Bowls of the Seacoast:
1. Laney & Lu – Exeter
This rice bowl snuck up on me with all of its vibrant colors and flavors. First of all it’s vegan, but don’t let that fool you. This is one of the most flavorful lunches I’ve ever had. Ever. Seriously. And better yet, it left me feeling pleasantly full and energized for hours. This divine bowl is called the “Colorful Curry” and it features brown curry infused rice, spinach, shredded carrots, peppers, cabbage, green onions, sunflower seed veggie burger, sliced avocado and Thai-spiced cashews all topped with an almond-miso sauce.
2. White Heron Tea – Portsmouth
Don’t be fooled by the name, this place has much more than tea. They actually have a whole cafe featuring hearty salads, wraps, bowls, desserts and of course tea. My advice is to go straight for the rice bowl, especially if you have a big appetite and an affinity for all things fresh! I dove into this bowl of brown rice with chicken and vegetables, topped with a coconut green curry sauce and I loved every minute of it.
3. Throwback Brewery – North Hampton
This rice bowl is a favorite of mine, best enjoyed after one of Throwback’s community yoga classes and paired with one of their craft brews. The Fried Rice Bowl features organic roasted chicken (or pork belly, duck confit or marinated tofu), squash, brown rice, edamame, radishes and bean sprouts, topped with a fried egg and a spicy sesame sauce. Holy yum. Go get it now.
4. Street – Portsmouth
My most recent rice bowl experience was at Street in Portsmouth. The official name for this beautiful bowl is Bibimbap – a Korean dish translating to “mixed meal”. My “bap,” as they call it, featured a bed of crispy-chewy bottomed sticky rice, Korean BBQ beef, sesame sautéed carrot, mushroom, zucchini, spinach and bean sprouts topped with a sunny-side up egg and served with Gochujang sauce.
Rice is just the vehicle for all these eclectic flavors to get into my belly! And for that, rice, I thank you. To be honest I’m having a really hard time deciding which of these rice bowls was my favorite. Each has its own unique flavors and ingredients that made it so incredibly satisfying. So I guess you’ll just have to try them all! Time for a rice-bowl road trip.