We've eaten at Charlie's many times before becoming vegan. The food is excellent, but there is little appropriate for a vegan, ALL food is cooked on the same grill used for meat, & they are absolutely NOT flexible about any special requests
The food was decent tasting, but we were still eating cheese and eggs at the time. However, on my way out the door I could see the cook preparing food, and he handled raw bacon and beef and then plated food without changing his gloves. OMG, I could have died out of dismay... This is not a hygienic practice nor is it vegetarian or vegan. I will never go back just because of the mental image I have of that raw meat. I didn't get sick, but I was just horrified at that practice. A few friends of mine told me to lighten up, that this sort of thing happens behind closed doors. But I worked in a restaurant and this never would have been satisfactory handling of ingredients.
I grew up in Chesapeake and heard of people praising Charlie's for years. My husband and I went there when we were visiting and were sorely disappointed. I would hardly call this place vegan or even veg friendly. They cook everything on the same grill. After seeing this, I didn't want to eat, but my husband ordered the tofu scramble and it was just wet, yellow tofu mush. Not good.
First time visit today - we sat at the counter and watched the cooks (great entertainment for our 5-year-old!). We ordered the kid's pancake (made in a Mickey Mouse-like shape with a chocolate chip smiley face), the California omelette (big slices of avacado!), and the Southwestern omelette (NOT vegetarian, but my husband wanted to compare the chorizo with our soyrizo). I also tried their Mimosa. Everything was delicious, especially the California omelette. Very filling portions, quick & friendly service (our server turned out to be the owner's daughter), and delicious vegetarian options. We'll be back to try more (especially the Tofu Scrabmle)!Pros: Delicious food, Friendly staff, Fun atmosphere
Cons: Limited parking
Another great find in Historic Ghent! We tried to give this place 5 stars, but happy cow wouldn't let us because it is not a veggie only restaurant. My husband and I are from out of town and found this awesome place on Happy Cow. We were drawn to the place by their veggie sausages and tofu scrambler even though it did not have a great review. We absolutely loved the place! It is a small restaurant with a very loyal local following! Both times we went it was hopping with people and everyone seemed to be happy. We were very impressed and loved every moment we were there. We ate inside once and outside the second time and both were so enjoyable. Charlie's cafe is definitely a go-to place for the veggie that loves a home cooked breakfast!
Updated from previous review on Monday June 27, 2011
Cons: small dining area
I went only once, for breakfast. It was a tiny place, and it was obviously a local favorite, because it was crowded. I ordered soy sausage and hashbrowns, and the portions were decently sized, but not terribly good to eat. A heads up - I noticed that meat was being cooked next to eggs and soy sausage, on the same grill. The service was great for having such a packed house, nothing was expensive, and it the whole place had a really great diner setup. Since it was crowded, I can't help but wonder if maybe my bad meal was just a fluke. In any case, there wasn't enough variety for me to choose to go there again.Pros: Good service, Inexpensive, Good atmosphere
Cons: Cooking meat & veg food together, Bad food, in my 1 experience, Very crowded
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