Food is obviously about more than just sustenance. It's also a social act, a way that we bond with family, friends or just acquaintances, at least on those occasions we aren't dining solo. Lentil as Anything takes this one step further, turning eating into a social act in a wider sense. How does it do this? By empowering you to decide how much you want to pay for your meal.
Underlined by the realization that most people want to do the right thing and information posted on the wall you can pay what your meal cost to produce, pay a little more to subsidize someone with fewer financial resources, or help with the running of the café. Everyone contributes according to their capacity to do so.
The front of the café is nice enough but out the back on a sunny day is was a very pleasant place to eat, the walls decorated by messages left by previous dinners. If you didn't know it was there though it would be possible to miss, past the kitchen and the small couch, out through the door on the left.
There are a reasonable number of options you can order, inspired by rather than necessarily spot on accurate renditions of different world cuisines. These include the okonomiyaki, which is like a Japanese vegetarian pancake topped with a mayonnaise sauce. While I quite liked the flavour of the okonomiyaki, I did find it a bit heavier in texture than I'd have liked.
Also ordered were the vegetable curry and the vegetable tagine. The vegetable tagine didn't come served in a tagine, like I had hoped. Quality wise it wasn't great, but wasn't terrible either. The vegetables still maintained a decent texture, the main issue was that the flavours were fairly flat.
Same thing could be said could be said about the vegetable curry, which seemed to have been prepared for a milder flavour palate than I prefer.
I wouldn't have a problem with returning here but don't think I'd be the one to suggest it. Big fan of the concept and I agree with the basic premise, that if trusted most people will do the right thing. Still that doesn't necessarily translate into great food, and for food which is both good for the body and the soul I prefer Crossways or Fo Guang Yuan.
Food - 5.5
Ambience - 7.5
Service - 6
Price - 7 (based on suggested costs)
288 High Street
Preston VIC 3072
Tel: 03 9471 3307