A burger that aims to save the planet


Ever wonder what happens to the leftover pulp that comes with drinking fresh pressed juice? Two San Diego businesses, Mendocino Farms and Pressed Juicery, are taking on that question with the Rescued Vegetable Burger - an homage to food conservation and environmental stewardship.

The veggie burger collaboration incorporates vegetable pulp from Pressed’s cold pressed juices along with an enticing array of shiitake mushrooms, onions, brown rice, gluten-free tamari, and nutritional yeast (a powerhouse of vitamins and minerals with a cheesy flavor). The pulp itself is a combination of carrots, beets, spinach and romaine lettuce, plus anti-inflammatory wonder-root, turmeric.

The upcycled vegan burger is served with a saucy “Thousand Island” dressing made with beets, a slice of tomato-cayenne tofu cheese (melted, of course), Oxnard-based Scarborough Farm’s butter lettuce, tomatoes, red onion and Zoe’s bread and butter pickles, all on a plant-based brioche bun. As a result of the collaboration, a whopping 300-500 pounds of pulp will be upcycled each week.

The planet-helping burger is served at the Del Mar Highlands and La Jolla Village locations, as well as all of their other locations around the state.

In addition to this new project, other conscientious Mendocino Farms collaborations include work with Drake Family Farm in Ontario, Galaxy Tacos in La Jolla, and Campfire restaurant in Carlsbad.

When Drake Family Farms faced financial hardship and potential closing, the restaurant jumped into action and created the Save Drake Farm’s Salad to ramp up buying power and help the farm stay afloat. The salad is now the No. 3 best seller on the menu and racks up 3,000 orders per week.

Drake has been able to increase its herd, with every new opening of Mendocino increasing goat cheese production. The salad also features roasted Mary’s chicken breast, Herbes de Provence marinated Drake Family Farm’s goat cheese, pink lady beets, green apple, dried cranberries, honey roasted almonds, red onion on Scarborough Farm’s greens.

Teaming up with Galaxy Taco’s chef Christine Rivera, Mendocino created the popular Torta de Loma for the opening of the La Jolla location with 100% of the proceeds benefitting ECOLIFE Conservation.

The Los Angeles-based chain also joined forces with chef Andrew Bachelier of Campfire in Carlsbad to create the Smoked Carrot Salad, which benefitted the Encinitas School District Farm Lab. The farm and educational center teaches children science and nutrition, while contributing a considerable percentage to the school lunch program.

To support Mendocino Farms’ missions while munching on farm fresh eats, head to one of the San Diego locations:

La Jolla: 8795 Villa La Jolla Dr., 858.731.8130; Del Mar: 12873 El Camino Real, 858.436.0000.

Other new fall menu items

Flat Top Smoked Brisket Club: Hickory House Smoked Brisket and Nitrate-Free Honey Ham, Romaine Lettuce, Tomato, Red Onions, Mama Lil’s Pickled Peppers and Chili Aioli on a Toasted Soft Roll

Low and Slow Smoked Pulled Pork Sandwich: Hickory House Smoked Pork, Mustard Pickle Slaw, Zoe’s Bread and Butter Pickles. Bone Suckin’ Mustard, Herb Aioli on Panini-Pressed Soft Roll

Fair Hills Farm Fuji Apple Salad: Sliced, Organic Fair Hills Farm Fuji Apples, Golden Raisins, Red Onion, Scarborough Farm’s Greens, Mild Blue Cheese, Crushed Honey Roasted Almonds with Date Sherry Vinaigrette