Jeanne Chang isn’t your typical restaurateur. She’s got a degree in molecular biology and has been a practitioner of traditional Chinese medicine, Ayurvedic medicine and spiritual psychology.
So what’s she doing hawking burritos?
Her recently opened counter-service restaurant Kye’s serves what she calls “kyeritos,” a twist on the burrito that uses romaine leaves, collard green leaves and nori (toasted seaweed) as tortilla alternatives. The gluten-free, dairy-free kyerito ($9 to $14) is stuffed with wholesome fillings, including clean proteins (grass-fed beef, wild salmon and organic chicken), healthy grains, organic veggies and a variety of from-scratch sauces. Vegan and Paleo options are also available.
“Every chance we get,” says Chang, “we infuse extra nutrition.” The local free-range eggs in the breakfast kyeritos are blended with spinach, the ground beef in the nori burger is mixed with chard and the shakes all have Chinese yam. Foods recognized as health promoting in Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine—like goji berries, amla berries and lotus root—also find their way into many of the dishes.
The ultra-portable kyerito (eat in or take ’em to go) are as tasty as they are nutritious, and that’s by design. Chang has grounded the restaurant’s philosophy in the Chinese principle of yin-yang. The yin is the nourishing aspect of the food, while the yang is “for the joy of it, for the pleasure, the happiness.” We’re beaming.
1518 Montana Ave., Santa Monica