If Paul Revere were alive today (and living in South Florida) he might be riding through the streets shouting, “The Canadians are coming! The Canadians are coming!” Except in this case, it would be joyous news. Copper Branch, the Canada-based restaurant chain, has opened a location in Fort Lauderdale and vegans and vegetarians (and some meat eaters, as well) will rejoice.
The fast-casual dining spot, which joins a slew of other vegan and vegetarian restaurants along Southeast 17thStreet, serves only 100 percent plant-based dishes. Many are also organic and GMO-free. There are also gluten-free options. However, as far as I’m concerned, none of that matters if the food being served isn’t delicious and Copper Branch succeeds in that category.
The menu is focused primarily on sandwiches and bowls. The sandwiches tend to be a bit pricey (they’re priced about $10 each and that doesn’t include a side. Burgers are served in a choice of organic kamut bun, gluten-free bun, collard green wrap or organic spelt wrap. Among the choices are a spicy black bean burger, The Copper Burger (made with beets, organic brown rice and pea protein), and shiitake teriyaki or portobello mushroom.
On the evening of our visit, a special vegan crab cake patty was available. It was so good that our friend kept insisting it was real crab meat. The bacon maple tempeh sandwich will satisfy any barbecue lover and the crusty roll managed to support the tempeh and all the mango-based sauce. There are also two wraps chock full of veggies, including one with vegan feta cheese.
The chain’s Power Bowls are filling meals, and all are priced $10 for a small and $15 for a large (which is enough to serve two). For the bowls you choose your base (organic brown rice, organic quinoa, konjac noodles or mixed lettuce) and top it with
your choice of protein (organic tempeh, organic smoked tofu, shiitake teriyaki mushrooms, carrot keftedes or organic tofu scramble). There are vegan cheeses and sauces you can add on to create your own bowl or you can choose from a variety of suggested combinations such as Mediterranean, Asian fusion, Latin, Greek or the General Copper house combo. For those going carb free, there’s a zucchini noodle bowl.
Appetizers and sides include a variety of soups and chili and spicy Buffalo wings (soy protein with hot sauce, sriracha coleslaw, and aioli sauce or hot sauce). Side dish options feature cubed, roasted white or sweet potatoes or those same potatoes as the base of a poutine with cremini mushroom sauce. The large order is enough for two as a dinner or four as a side and features the perfectly browned potatoes topped with the rich sauce and mozzarella style shreds. Other side possibilities are a mixed lettuce salad, carrot keftedes, organic spinach hummus, sriracha coleslaw, and nachos.
The breakfast menu is available all day and showcases such favorites as avocado toast, a gluten-free waffle, tofu scramble, organic quinoa with shredded coconut and fruit compote, granola bites, and of course, smoothies.
It’s Easy Being Green
If you want to check out some other vegan and vegetarian options these places should be on your radar.
2400 Wilton Dr., Wilton Manors
3233 Griffin Road, Dania Beach
900 NE 20th Ave., Fort Lauderdale
Green Bar & Kitchen
1075 SE 17th St., Fort Lauderdale
Green Wave Cafe
5221 W. Broward, Plantation
1515 SE 17thSt., Fort Lauderdale