Living Food Bistro & Cafe
G-04 Menara Tan & Tan
Jalan Tun Razak
Kuala Lumpur
Tel: 016-888 9123
Open Monday-Friday, 8.00am-6.00pm; dinner
Thursday-Saturday 7.00pm-10.00pm; brunch
Saturday 9.00am-5.00pm. Sunday closed

One restaurant astounds with its new and wholesome approach to food – no frying, grilling or extra sauces needed.

IN this oil-drenched, sauced-up, meat-obsessed world, one cannot help but admire from afar the miniscule number of restaurants that stand for something entirely different. Founded by health and wellness nut Philip Yiin, the Living Food Bistro & Cafe located in the recesses of KL is one of those.

It was on a relatively quiet Thursday evening that I decided to take my vague fascination for this wholesome eatery to yet another level – by actually eating there. Feeling like the quintessential food rebel, I skulked past the charmingly cluttered command post and huge chalkboard of specials that fill the front of this petite, unassuming restaurant.

That’s when I came face-to-face with Yiin, 51, and his son, Stirling, 23, whose warm, smiling countenance immediately adds cheer to the sterile, almost depressing, interior. Yiin, who wears his youth and sprightliness like a badge of honour, knows more than a thing or two when it comes to eating healthy. That’s why he started this place in December 2011: to demonstrate that one does not necessarily have to go fully organic, or fully vegetarian, to look and feel great. This place is all about “real food”, as he likes to put it.

“Real food is food that is healthy and tasty. Unfortunately, not many restaurants know how to do the two together,” he says.

The main problem, claims Yiin, stems from the ambiguous definition of “healthy”.

“Are organic restaurants healthy” If the said organic restaurant uses organic white sugar, it can’t be healthy. Saying organic white sugar is healthy is like saying organic heroin is healthy,” says Yiin wryly.

He adds: “Are vegetarian restaurants healthy” Most vegetarian restaurants serve fake meat filled with artificial flavours and colours. That can’t be healthy either.”

Yiin’s daughter, chef Ashley Yiinprepares food from scratch in the kitchen.

This prompted Yiin to come up with his own solution. The menu at Living Food abides by an 80:20 ratio – that is, 80% vegetarian and raw vegan (meaning food that is prepared below 42

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