Chillin’ in the Macro ‘hood

June 16th, 2010

 I used to live at the Kushi Institute , surrounded by people learning macro, talking macro, eating macro and dreaming macro 24/7.  There was never any denial among us that food was powerful, even magical .  That was the glue that brought us together.  In fact, we were so steeped in the food thing that I had a non-macro friend say to me once, as I gabbled on and on about gomasio and brown rice  and how it was all going to save the world: "Jess, I think you are in denial of everyone else's denial!"  Ugh.  It made me want to throw my kukicha tea at him!

How things have changed.  Now I'm the one living a relatively quiet life, away from the Kushi Institute, listening to NPR and surfing celebrity-gossip websites .  I'm going to movies, and worrying about the oil spill  and generally being steeped in regular culture.  So it's always an amazing thing to hang out with other macros and remember the actual "cult"  that I'm in. 

I spent last night on a panel of macro "experts" at M Cafe  in Culver City.  If you're not from Southern California, M Cafe is a reason to visit.  For the last five years, M Cafe  has provided gourmet macrobiotic food to the hip and trendy masses of West Hollywood, Culver City and now Beverly Hills .  Apparently Ellen and Portia  have brunch at the Bev Hills M regularly.  If they're smart, they have the killer vegan benedict .

So M Cafe hosted this panel as an anniversary event.  It included chef Lee Gross,  Mina Dobic and yours truly.  Mina  cured herself of ovarian cancer–which had spread to the bones–25 years ago, having been given two months to live by her doctors.  The whole story is in her book, My Beautiful Life.  Since then, she has been a macro counselor to thousands of individuals, helping to save countless lives in the process (by the way, if you're recovering from a serious health condition, you need to skip the rich food at M cafe for a while and contact a counselor like Mina.  See resources for a counselors near you).  

Also on the panel was Lee Gross , who went from traditionally trained chef to Macro Masterpiece Maker.  After cooking for Gwyneth Paltrow  for a few years,  he went on to develop the original menu at M Cafe (click here to see the current one).   Eric LeChasseur (owner of Seed, another great macro joint in Venice, CA) was the original pastry chef.  Their mouth-watering M cafe fare has only gotten yummier over the years.  

Between the three of us, we had a lot to say.   Mina's schtick is turning lives around, Lee's whole gig is seducing the body into radiant health via the tongue and I'm into inspiring healthy people to feel even better and to learn about the power of food. 

We've come a long way, baby.  In the fifteen years since my friend confronted my denial of other people's denial, things have changed.  Books have been published .  Big stars have blown the macro horn.  Medical doctors are taking up the plant-based diet charge with gusto

It felt really good to talk to the group of people who had gathered for this panel–people who were curious and turned on by the macro thing.  I said at one point: "If you're just getting into this and it feels like the most exciting thing you've ever come across and inside your head you're silently screaming 'omigod FOOD… omigod it's like the BIGGEST THING… this macro thing is MIND-BLOWING!!! I'M SO EXCITED!!!!' , don't hold yourself back.  This thing is huge.  And I don't just mean that the movement is getting bigger or that celebs are into it.  That's just window dressing… 

I mean it's huge inside of you.  It will change your life.  Your body.  Your mind.  Your whole direction .  In beautiful ways you never anticipated."  And I looked into their faces, so relieved and happy to have someone wave their freak flag for them .  And I looked inside the restaurant, which was full and BUMPIN' with customers. 

"Be excited" I said.  "You should be". 


By the way, Lee and I will be speaking again at M Cafe in Culver City next week; Tuesday, June 22nd at 7 o'clock.  To be a part of the action, and eat an amazing gourmet Lee-cooked meal, contact Cindy at

Here's the recipe for M Cafe's Scarlet Quinoa salad.  Mmmm… Perfect for summer.

Mina's website has tons of recipes too, which are more traditional and medicinal.  Enjoy. 


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One Response to “Chillin’ in the Macro ‘hood”

  1. Klara Le Vine says:

    Regret I won’t make it to the M Cafe, but so excited about your coming here to Israel in December. And then watching as you get everyone else totally excited about mb.

    btw, what is the killer vegan benedict?

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