Best Organic Vegan Cafe in Los Angeles: Golden Mean

09/01/2015 09:38 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

The story of Golden Mean Vegan Cafe is an ironic story about the law of attraction.

We live in a world that is constantly dancing with extremes. Currently, the best example of this would be the simultaneous rise of Donald Trump and Bernie Sanders as political candidates. No matter where we look, if there is one extreme, its polar opposite is close by.

In early 2009 at the height of the economic recession, Aaron Glassman decided to come down from his suburban mountaintop of eleven years to create community in Santa Monica. He opened a modest organic vegan cafe called Golden Mean on Wilshire Boulevard near 11th Street.

He named the restaurant Golden Mean because of his enthusiasm for uniting scientific laws with spiritual principles. Golden Mean actually means "the ideal moderate position between two extremes."

At the time his two adjacent neighbors were The Temple Bar, a hip westside live music venue on his right, and the longtime neighborhood florist on his left. Nestled in between flowers and live music Golden Mean Natural Foods was born.

Shortly after the opening, Aaron created a healthy and environmentally sustainable alternative to coffee called the Macaccino that contains a blend of roasted maca superfood that takes only 4 gallons of water to grow per gallon of maca, while producing 1 gallon of coffee beans requires 1,056 gallons of water - obviously a huge difference.

The drink grew in popularity to become Golden Mean's best selling drink by far.

Five years later the florist closed and soon a sign was posted announcing the future home of Starbucks. A coincidence? Probably not as Starbucks now appears everywhere there is access to a water line.

And then just a year later, Temple Bar went out of business and a new tenant arrived: Bel Campo Butcher Shop, Beef Company.

"I hadn't even heard the word 'butcher' in decades!" said Aaron.
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Another coincidence? Aaron didn't think so. For out of all the gin joints in the world this butcher shop had to turn up next to his vegan cafe.

After almost seven years Golden Mean Cafe now stands between the two extremes of food and beverage. It is quite literally a shining example of the "middle way."

Aaron said, "We hope to continue attracting individuals to our little spot who recognize the beauty in unity through the middle way and the inevitable dance between the two extremes, no matter what your tastes happen to be."

Personally, I love the Reuben, the Super Works Burger, the vegan Chicken Teriyaki Wrap, all of the desserts, and of course, the Macaccino.

Golden Mean Cafe is the best organic vegan restaurant in Los Angeles. The quality of the food is always impeccable and the prices are extremely fair.

And it is never lost on me that I have to pass either a butcher shop or a corporate coffee house to enter it!