The country’s most brilliant vegetarian restaurant started with a series of Napa Valley potlucks: Sandy Lawrence, a career overachiever (she ran a global conference-planning company), invited friends over for yoga and dinner in her ultra-eco rammed-earth house. These parties got so popular that, in 2007, Lawrence decided to turn them into a business: Ubuntu restaurant and yoga studio.
Sandy Lawrence. Photo courtesy of Ubuntu.
Lawrence strives to make her business be more than a business, so she works with Napa peace organization TheCommunity.com. In fact, ubuntu is a South African word that means “humanity toward others”—an ideal that explains Lawrence’s worldview, and why, as a meat eater, she opened a vegetarian restaurant.