Support Local Journalism. Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club.

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Go Vegan for Lunch at Downtown’s New Helio Terra Cafe

Posted By on Tue, Jun 30, 2015 at 1:07 PM

Judging by the warm reception that Helio Terra has been enjoying since its early May opening, there’s room downtown for another all-vegan eats option, a niche previously occupied solely by Flaming Ice Cube. The bright, casual café recently opened in the Prospect Avenue storefront once occupied by Titan Up Café, a 1,000-square-foot spot connected to Titan’s Gym in The Residences at 668 Euclid Avenue.

The fast-casual cafe seats about 15 to 20 diners, but many customers appear to take their meals to go. Orders are placed at the counter, paid for, and then picked up when ready.

An entire wall is devoted to a chalkboard-style, all-day menu, which is divided into sections for coffees and teas, juices and smoothies, and raw and cooked food items. Everything is vegan, and most of the items are organic, according to owner Austin Ruesch, a practicing vegan for 14 years.

Cold-pressed juices and fruit smoothies are served by the pint. The Refresher ($7) is made with watermelon, apple and mint, while the blood-red Beetnik ($9) is made from beets, carrot, apple and ginger.

Naturally, bountiful salads feature prominently on the roster. The Kale Berry Salad ($9) is a toss of kale, house-sprouted quinoa, avocado, orange, pepitas and berry vinaigrette. A roasted beet salad ($8) is garnished with sunflower seeds and dressed with an apple cider vinaigrette.

Vegan or not, any diner would dig the Avocado Toast ($4), nutty all-grain toast schmeared with creamy avocado mash, crunchy sprouted mung beans, and cool tomato slices. Billed as a Tuscan Sun Flatbread ($7), the base of this dish is more like an herby lavosh, soft and supple enough to be folded around raw toppings like uncooked marinara, mushrooms, onions, tomatoes and chopped greens and herbs.

I’m not going to sit here and declare that Helio Terra’s vegan Reuben ($9) sandwich is a stunt double for the meaty corned beef version, but I can honestly say that it’s satisfying and delicious. At its heart is mustard-marinated seiten, tangy kraut, crunchy sliced pickles, and some creamy non-dairy cheese-like substance that ties it all together.

Helio Terra is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner every day but Sunday. 

Tags: ,

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club for as little as $5 a month.

Read the Digital Print Issue

December 1, 2021

View more issues


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.


© 2021 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 505-8199
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.

Website powered by Foundation