The bright blue exterior is impossible to miss, but inside Earth's Kitchen it is as green as it gets. The focus of this environmentally and ethically aware café is on sustainability, which is reflected in the menu and decor.
Fashioned with recycled timber and repurposed objects, like old wine glasses strung along the wall and butternuts to welcome visitors upon arrival, it is unpolished but unpretentious and comfortable with a certain laid-back charm.
The staff are as welcoming as the butternuts providing friendly and attentive table service and willingly dispense knowledge about the meals on offer, such as the ingredients and how they are sourced. Even when the lunch hour rush hits this inner city cafe, there is still a sense of calm and it would be difficult to find a more relaxing dining experience in Adelaide.
A pumpkin pizza from Earth's Kitchen on Pirie Street
On a sunny day, a coffee and cake on the street side table would be nice, but most of the seating is provided inside. The glass frontage is perfect for people watching and well-spaced tables are set for couples and groups. With little risk of bumping chairs with other diners, both staff and patrons can move freely around this reasonably sized café.
But what everyone really wants to know about is the food and rest assured, it does not disappoint. The very opposite in fact, it might even come as a surprise that, for a humble café on busy Pirie Street that uses hessian sacks to line the high ceiling and framed teaspoons to adorn the walls, the food quality and presentation here is excellent and the delivery prompt.
Always with sustainability in mind, Earth's Kitchen uses organic, seasonal, and locally sourced ingredients wherever possible. Broccoli, for example, is obviously available in abundance at the moment as evident on the ever-changing specials board, which on this occasion includes soup, curry, and pizza.
Vegetarians, vegans, and gluten-free eaters will be pleased with the amount of options available, which are very clearly labelled on the menu. Of course, the menu changes with the season, but what follows is an idea of what to expect from a lunchtime visit to Earth's Kitchen.
As well as daily specials, there is also a range of entrees that are ideal for sharing and grazing such as hummus, dukkah, olives, and dip. While the decision of what to order is still challenging, it is made somewhat simpler because the main menu is divided into two items – salad or pizza.
One would think a choice between salad and pizza would be easily made because everyone knows that friends aren't won with salad. Earth's Kitchen proves The Simpsons wrong because these salads are quite popular. Marinated beetroot, for example, with quinoa, feta, spinach, roasted nuts, balsamic vinaigrette, and served with organic house-made flatbread – tempting, very tempting.
Pizza, however, was the winner on the day and without any regret because both offerings were delicious. The classic crust is generously topped with ingredients and a substantial meal. Luckily, take away containers are available for leftovers, which make for a tasty breakfast as the flavours develop overnight.
The pumpkin pizza is a nice uncomplicated slice suitable for vegetarians or those struggling to make a decision. It's covered with pumpkin, caramelised onion, baby spinach, marinated feta, and olive oil. But for something a little more exotic, try the gentle sizzle of the Middle Eastern spice. Packed with roasted vegetables (such as capsicum, zucchini, and possibly even a parsnip) and topped with tahini and dukkah, it's a flavoursome vegan pizza and an outright favourite.
Meat-eaters need not despair because there are chicken and kangaroo pizzas too. Ranging from $17 to $21, it's quite affordable eating at Earth's Kitchen (especially considering there will most likely be some for later too). For an additional charge, a gluten-free base is available and extra toppings can be added, such as tempeh and feta.
Be sure to save room for dessert because the sweet allure of the cake display cannot be denied for long. Free from gluten and refined sugar, vegan, and around the $5 mark, there's probably a cake calling your name right now. Perhaps it's the raw chocolate nut slice, which is reminiscent of a chocolate crackle, or the gooey chocolate orange hazelnut cake.
As for drinks, the venue is licensed so there is South Australian wine, beer, and cider available. These too are labelled as organic, biodynamic, vegan, and/or preservative free. The non-alcoholic options include bottled juice, fair trade coffee, and a large selection of organic tea.
There are smoothies too. The Iron Shrek is popular and if ever there is an award for the greenest smoothie in Adelaide, it would be a contender. Banana, coconut milk, kale, and spirulina create a deep shade of forest green that is as nice to drink as it is to look at.
Earth's Kitchen is open for breakfast and lunch from Monday to Saturday and dinner on Friday nights. It even has an adjoining store, Wilsons Organics, which stocks a large array of fresh produce and grocery items. Visit the Earth's Kitchen website for more information or Facebook page to find out what's cooking in Earth's Kitchen.