400 lbs Ago: The Philip McCluskey Story

October 13, 2009

by contributor Philip McCluskey

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I’m a sexy guy. I’ve fallen in love with myself, because I am a beautiful, sexy, gorgeous man. I feel like I can say that without worrying that my ego needs to be checked at the door . . . Because I used to be 400lbs.

See, I’ve been overweight my entire life, starting as a “cute” chubby little kid, all the way to morbidly obese and not so cute in my twenties. I tried every fad diet, fasting program and fancy gym equipment there was. Nothing worked. I was still overweight and I still despised myself. It wasn’t until I chose a raw vegan lifestyle and to begin practicing self-adoration that my life became amazingly sexy, full and alive.BeforePhilip
It was the living food and the way it helped start the kickass circle of falling in love with ME. I felt better as I was losing weight like crazy, so I liked myself more. As I began to like myself more, I started positive affirmations in front of mirrors and I smiled even when I didn’t feel like it. Sometimes I felt self-conscious but I kept adoring myself, or at least working on it. And now. . . I think I’m the sexiest piece of raw vegan “meat” out there.

Eating raw living uncooked organic vegan food (veggies, fruit, nuts, seeds) was just the beginning. It led to so many other changes, as I began respecting and caring for the planet, becoming eco-conscious, thinking about the present moment, letting go of control, exercising and actually enjoying it, learning to trust and adventuring in the outside world, feeling like a kid again and yet becoming fully a man that I love and actually really admire.


So my goal was really always to become half the man I was. . . And through self-love and the best raw vegan food ever, I did.

Now about that food! Here’s my favorite sexy salad recipe that is easy to make with whatever you have on hand, can be put in a heaping man-sized bowl, and is as spicy and flavorful as you can handle.


  1. Rip up one head of greens (kale, farmer’s market lettuce, dandelion, wild mesclun, go crazy and think outside the iceberg lettuce box)
  2. Add 1 avocado, pitted and mashed
  3. Throw in any sliced raw veggies you want, whatever is local and in season is best for the planet and for your body. I think my favorite additions this time of year are the last of the delicious sungold tomatoes, I just add a handful or two whole.
  4. Rip up a bunch of dulse, add some kelp powder, soaked wakame, hijiki, sprinkles of blue green algae or the incredible sparkly crystal manna. . .get those superfoods from the sea!
  5. Add whatever other flavorings and seasons you want: nutritional yeast, raw nuts/seeds (I’m addicted to hemp seeds), Bragg’s Amino Acids, Himalayan Sea Salt, cayenne pepper, chipotle, even a little raw nut-cheese every now and then. . .the whole idea is to play, experiment, mash it up and dig in.

Eat and be sexy.

Philip McCluskey

Rockin’ Raw: Williamsburg’s First Raw Restaurant

June 4, 2009

by Joshua Katcher


Rockin’ Raw is a vegan raw-food restaurant serving organic-Peruvian-New-Orleanian-creole-inspired cuisine. It’s located very close to the Bedford L-train, in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and has a great outdoor, backyard garden area. It is a refreshing and innovative addition to the Willaimsburg restaurant scene, which tends to be very uncreatively meat-centric.

The first thing I tried was the Raw Boy “Tuna” Sandwich, which had a satisfying, seafood flavor. I was blown away by the raw bread. It was tender, chewy, and not too dense or heavy. It’s the sort of bread I could eat every day and not be aware that it’s raw! I don’t even know how they make raw bread. This dish is perfect for anyone new to, or skeptical of raw foods because it’s just like an artisan sandwich.


The Tallarines Verdes de La Lala was a live pesto-pasta dish. Thin strips of zucchini replace traditional semolina pasta. As a hardcore Italian food and pasta-lover, I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this. The pesto was rich and garlicky, and it was sprinkled with cheesy nutritional yeast. The best part was that it didn’t leave me feeling bloated and sick. .


My friend got the Louisiana Gumbo. If you like Okra, you will enjoy this dish. The “sausage” in it was smokey and savory, and the gumbo-base was spicy and very complex.


An Appetizer we shared was the “Crab Cakes” with Creamy Dill Sauce. I believe there was horseradish in the dipping sauce, which matched the cakes nicely. I have never had traditional Crab Cakes, so I can not make the comparison, but they were like little veggie burgers, and quite enjoyable.


I had a refreshing and delicious Cucumber Mojito, and also tried the gingery Watermelon Cooler. I would definitely recommend those drinks, as well as the Strawberry Milk Shake, which was out of this world.


Believe it or not, we made room for dessert! The nut-based Lucuma ice-cream was a new flavor experience for my palate. It’s made from a Peruvian fruit, the lucuma, which has hints of maple, caramel and coffee. The chocolate sauce was outstanding, and the ice-cream itself was creamier than the vanilla (on the Peach Cobbler), which I found to be tasty, but a bit on the chalky-icy side.



Overall, it’s a great spot with a chill outdoor seating area, and a very welcoming vibe. It’s laid-back, relaxed, delicious, and the staff is very friendly! Now go check it out!

Click HERE for menu, directions, and reservations.