When Adam Paul tells people he's a vegan, often times, they react with a blank look on their faces, as if he's visiting from another planet. In effect, it only made sense naming his in-and-out vegan shop Life On Mars; Paul also pays homage to the David Bowie track.
Positioned in Logan Square, off the boulevard, seemed an odd choice of real estate. However, a soft-spoken Paul prefers this location to Wicker Park or his own 'hood in the Ukrainian Village, turned off by their saturation of restaurants.
So far, residents (most customers live within 10 minutes) respond well, anticipating a daily rotating menu involving macaroni and cheese and coconut greens to baked goods and a variety of salads. I sampled the orange sesame tofu and roasted root medley, both solid options. Prices break down between hot and cold meals and large (16 ounces) and small (a generous eight ounces) from $2.50 to $9.
For now, this fourth rock from the sun only serves the takeout crowd. Paul forwent table service. "You depend on people for tips and I don't like putting pressure on people for making food and making them happy," he said. He does promise keeping things interesting without much detail outside of a possible bike delivery route in the future.
Average cost: <$10
Centerstage Reviewer: David-Anthony Gonzalez