One of the great things about writing Lick the Plate is running into folks out and about and discovering their favorite places to eat and what they do for a living.
In the case of Michelle Bartok, our restaurant conversation led to the discovery that she owns one of the more acclaimed spas around called Apotheque Lifestyle Spa in Oceanside.
San Diego Magazine called Apotheque, “The Best Place to Find Zen” and their unique, custom, individualized and choice orientated services have been getting rave reviews.
Michelle also runs Innovative Body Science, a company that manufactures spa treatments, facials and amenities for spas and resorts — so yes, she is a busy woman.
I caught up with some of her team at Apotheque recently to find out where they like to eat around town.
Yoga instructor Sandra Cadet de Fontenay kept her picks local in Oceanside. Some of her favorites include Local Tap House, Felix’s BBQ, and Teri Cafe.
“All three places have great food and are reasonably priced,” she said. “The place my family and I frequent the most has to be Felix’s. The servers have a welcoming Southern hospitality vibe and make you feel right at home. Soon after being seated, they bring out complimentary corn bread muffins that are warm and scrumptious. The menu is an extensive list of Southern fare, I highly recommend the catfish and Alabama fried chicken. The chicken is brined and then fried to a crispy golden deliciousness. The owner Felix Berry hails from Alabama, he has brought his Soul Food with him and we are quite lucky here in Oceanside.”
Thanks for the tip on Felix’s Sandra! I love it when a new place pops up on to my radar and the fried chicken sounds amazing.
Amalia McCann is a hair colorist who specializes in rainbows at Apotheque. She is another fan of Local Tap house and how they use local ingredients in every dish.
“I’ve tried a lot from the menu and haven’t been disappointed. If I want some comfort food I start out with the Shrimp and Chorizo egg rolls, they go wonderfully with the house made chipotle ranch. Then, I love to indulge in the local strawberry avocado baby kale salad! The creamy goat cheese, candied pecans, and the burnt orange vinaigrette go wonderfully with the fresh baby kale and sweet strawberries. Don’t even get me started on their huge awesome beer and wine selection. I recommend joining LTH for their Sunday brunch bottomless mimosas.” OK, add another restaurant for LTP to check out!
Cassanna Atyim is another one of the amazing yoga instructors at Apotheque. Cassandra picks Swami’s in Oceanside for their healthy menu and endless options for breakfast and lunch.
“I’ll never get bored considering what they have to offer. From fresh squeezed juices to smoothies, shakes, coffee, Kombucha on tap and even more like mimosas! If you care about what you’re consuming and what you spend out of your pocket, Swamis will be your favorite too! Don’t panic, it’s all organic and I recommend the healthy burrito with a side of cottage cheese and fruit. Namaste.”
Face beautifier Andrea Sellar shares my love of The Yellow Deli in Vista.
“Most of their food is grown on their local farms in Vista and Valley Center California. The Yellow Deli is open 24 hours Sunday through Thursday! You can’t get a cup of tea anywhere at 4 a.m.! The ambiance is super peaceful and has a very home-like vibe to it. One of my favorite dishes is the Yoga Vista Special, It’s a vegan burger with fresh veggies, my favorite part is that it comes on a freshly baked vegan Kaiser roll.”
I know the Yellow Deli well and it might be time to make a return trip.
Eliza Wilson is the product junky and holder of the keys at Apotheque. Eliza heads south to Leucadia for her pick Mozy’s Café.
“They have a very wide range of healthy options, at a reasonable price that could meet anyone’s dietary plan including meat eaters. Their vegan, gluten free and vegetarian dishes are all really good and the Rastafarian/ laid back vibe and extremely nice and informative staff makes you wish you could live in their little bungalow and eat like a king (or queen) for the rest of your days. Not only do they have fantastic food, but their smoothies and acai bowls are to die for! All of their ingredients are fresh and organic and leave you satisfied without the guilt.” I’m feeling a little guilty for not having featured this gem in LTP. Thanks for the reminder Eliza.
I wrap things up with Bartok at The Beach Break Café in Oceanside.
“My all time favorite breakfast meal is their Caribbean Scramble. Zell, Gary and their sons are friends of ‘South O’ people and great hosts. I wish they would commit to putting this on their menu but if you ask they usually can create this amazing blend of spiced chicken, peppers, onions and eggs. The coffee cake is an included treat that you have to give up the calories for — it’s worth it. The Beach Break is the owner’s tribute to the ocean they all play in. Zell outrigger canoes and the boys surf. They made the big move 5 years ago and have not had to look back on their huge success and gift to Oceanside.”
Nicely put Michelle, and the scramble sounds really good —another future column for sure.
Check out Apotheque Lifestyle Spa at 322 North Cleveland Street in Oceanside. Call (760) 967-7727 or online at apothequespa.com.
David Boylan is the founder of Artichoke Creative an Encinitas based integrated marketing firm. He also hosts Lick the Plate Radio that airs Monday through Friday at 7 p.m. on FM94/9, Easy 98.1, and KSON. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org or (858) 395-6905.