Heartwood Bakery and Cafe

Overall rating: 4.0 stars 22 Reviews
Organic vegetarian food restaurant. Offers a la carte menu (no more buffet), an assortment of baked goods, and Sunday brunch. Price: Moderate more-less
Vegan-friendly, Lacto, Organic, Canadian, Bakery, Western, Take-out


First Review by KelseyApple

Very Cute Delicious Restaurant

5 Posted on 05 / 02 / 2014

I really enjoyed the quaintness and coziness of Heartwood. It's a great atmosphere and the servers are extremely friendly. The menu has many great options and variety. Its a bit pricey and some of the items are not large portions for the amount of food that you get. But its very delicious and healthy. The desserts in my opinion are not the greatest and for how much you pay for them, they aren't worth it in my opinion. But I highly recommend their soups and sandwiches as well as their bowl meals. They are well portioned and amazingly delicious!

Pros: Delicious sandwiches, Cute location/area, Variety
Cons: Some meal portions, Cheesecake isn't great, Pricey

Baked goodness

4 Posted on 02 / 20 / 2014

Everything purchased has met my expectations. Good service, clean environment but it was a bit noisy. I have a sweet tooth and my baked desserts were scrumptious. I love their hours of operations as I tend to work alot of overtime. I never have to worry, they are always open

Pros: great hours
Cons: a bit noisy

Great food, great service

4 Posted on 01 / 26 / 2014

A nice surprise to see so many vegan options on the menu. You know you've hit gold when you can't decide on what to eat. Had the TLT and soup of the day. Both incredibly delicious. Great service and friendly. We will be back!

The entrees are great!

4 Posted on 12 / 02 / 2013

I have visited Heartwood on 3 occasions for brunch and lunch.

I love the atmosphere. It's dim and cozy inside. I love that they used potted ivy plants as centre pieces.

I've been impressed with my main meal all 3 visits. On my first visit, I had the portobello mushroom burger (one of my favorite meals of all time). Next I tried the black bean burrito. Then I had a bean and tofu breakfast burrito made gluten free. My meals have been fresh, fast and delicious.

I am not hooked on their desserts yet. I tried a gluten-free chocolate peanutbutter cheesecake and it tasted more like a cake than a cheesecake. I also had a gluten-free almond chocolate chip cookie, which was a little on the hard side and not as flavourful as some of the gluten-free cookies I have had in the city.

Despite that, I love their food enough to want to go back.

Pros: cozy atmosphere, great entrees, friendly service
Cons: desserts


So good!

4 Posted on 11 / 22 / 2013

We went to Heartwood with our vegan friends last weekend for the 1st time. I loved the fact that they had ORGANIC food! They had great options to choose from. The food tasted amazing but the prices were a bit steep for the portion sizes. I shared vegan nachos with my boyfriend and I had the Pesto Portobello sandwich! I loved it!! My boyfriend really enjoyed his Bean Burrito as well!

Pros: Organic, Delicious, Friendly Staff
Cons: Price, Portion Size


3 Posted on 11 / 16 / 2013

I heard a lot of great things about Heartwood and had really wanted to try it out. I did enjoy it but feel somewhat unsatisfied. I really want to return for a second try. I got the spicy peanut bowl and the sauce was great and loved the combo of veggies (except kale, I hate the stuff haha) but it seemed a bit lacking in the portion size for the price. Our waitress was a sweetheart though and I have nothing but love to send to her. Still will give it another shot.
Updated from previous review on Tuesday July 16, 2013

Updated review here: http://the-vegan-peach.blogspot.ca/2013/11/heartwood-vegan-review.html

Pros: Mostly vegan, Nice staff
Cons: Portion size small, Pricey


4 Posted on 07 / 18 / 2013

We went on a Sunday for brunch. It was hot outside in the sun, and the air con inside was a bit strong for me, but luckily they had some outdoor seating in the shade, which was perfect for us to enjoy the fresh air! Also perfect was the water! I always like room temperature water, and most places find this odd, but when I requested this the waitress said that's what they serve anyway, great! Oh, and the food was delicious :) I was there with a non-veg friend and she liked it a lot! The serving sizes were generous. I took my leftovers with me, in one of their biodegradable containers.

Very satisfied

5 Posted on 06 / 20 / 2013

In years past when I ate at Heartwood, it was buffet - healthy but limited. Their menu now is great and the taste is ever so good. This time, I had cup of soup, burger with steamed greens followed by coffee and dessert. Great vegan food.

Pros: Great vegan food, Friendly staff

Vegan done Right!

5 Posted on 05 / 13 / 2013

I can't think of a better compliment for a vegetarian or vegan restaurant than "I would not hesitate to bring non-veg family or friends here!" The food was great. Not "great for veg food in the maritimes" good or "as good as I've come to expect from veg restaurants" good or any other hedged reviews. It was just great!

We went for brunch, and my wife and I shared the tofu scramble and the waffles. The waffles, while cut-with-your-fork tender and with a sublime taste combination all their own, were a mere delivery system for the mountain of berry confit piled over them. The tofu scramble plate was just a parade of wonderful tastes and flavours, with no part of it being "just there" to fill the plate. Even the toast, which most restaurants just throw on as filler, was their in-house sourdough which has a wonderful taste and texture I've never had before.

The serving staff were also wonderful. Open, friendly, knowledgable and skilled. I'd reccomend this restaurant to anyone, veg or not.

Will return again to give it another shot.

3 Posted on 03 / 25 / 2013

We weren't particularly pleased with Heartwood's food. We got potato wedges that were still pretty raw and extremely spicy. The desert was dry, tasted bad and was expensive. The pizza was alright. I feel the bill was way too expensive for the food, someday I might give it another shot and aim for brunch or staples like hummus and something else. I give the atmosphere and the fact that they are vegan 5 stars, but the food and price has me not too impressed overall.

Pros: vegan, atmosphere
Cons: price, taste

Surprisingly tasty flavours

5 Posted on 08 / 01 / 2011

This is a cute, small, urban cafe. I was extremely impressed with the tastes of the food that we ordered. We went to a number of vegetarian restaurants during our recent trip to Halifax and this had the best tasting food, obviously prepared by someone who understands flavours.

Incredibly fresh, delicious tasting hummus according to my DH (and he has had a LOT of hummus!). Highly recommended. We'll go back the next time we're in Halifax. Reasonable prices and pretty good portion sizes.

Great Overall

4 Posted on 08 / 25 / 2010

My partner and I were visiting Halifax for the weekend on my first trip to the Maritimes and I was excited to try any local vegan offerings. We arrived at Heartwood on what I would call a Saturday morning even though it was already early afternoon, just in time for a rather late brunch. Having been stymied before at so many meat-serving restaurants by their non-existent vegan brunch options (fruit & toast is not an acceptable option, especially when I have to send my toast back because it has been buttered!) I was looking forward to a menu to choose from with only my tastebuds as determinant.

I had the Organic Spelt Waffles with sweet Blueberry Sauce and Fruit Salad ($10). Delicious! The two waffles were substantial and crispy and the sauce was indeed sweet, which made me appreciative for not having to add syrup, but the 'fruit salad' was served with the syrup on top of the waffles which seemed an odd choice to me. I would have preferred it to be separate but this is merely personal taste. And because my stomach is bottomless and I don't mind a wide variety of flavours in one sitting, I also had the soup of the day, which was red lentil ($6). It was heavenly and the bite from the sourdough bread it was served with provided a pleasing complement.

My partner had the Tofu Scramble w/ herbed Potatoes ($9). He seemed to enjoy his food and was pleased enough with the portions to offer me a taste of his meal and I must admit to being particularly impressed by the herbed potatoes. I'm not generally a fan of potatoes - I never have them at home - and my past experiences with a restaurant's herbed potatoes is that they're either barely seasoned, leaving them bland, or they're not even herbed but massively salted, and they're always soggy, like they've been sitting for hours in a warming tray. Heartwood's herbed potatoes were perfection: seasoned just enough to be flavourful without being overwhelming and roasted to a crispy goodness without being overdone. Yum!

Our food was great but unfortunately the same can't be said of our service. While certainly friendly and definitely not terrible, our server provided barely more than the minimum of service. Now, I don't expect to be waited on hand-and-foot but I don't think it's asking too much to have a glass of water refilled. But overall, Heartwood has great food that is reasonably portioned and priced with a pleasant atmosphere. I will definitely be going again the next time I'm in Halifax.

Pros: Great food, Pleasant atmosphere, Reasonably priced
Cons: Sub-standard service

Amazing, but best for experienced vegetarians

5 Posted on 06 / 22 / 2010

I love Heartwood. However, I would not recommend it to brand new vegetarians. Heartwood is a step above other vegetarian restaurants in the area because of its emphasis on health. You'll find ingredients on the menu that may seem weird or daunting to those without an interest in health, nutrition, or cooking. For instance, you can find umboshi vinegar, agave, kale, and miso paste starring in many dishes. Other reviewers commented on their desserts being gritty. The grittiness is due to Heartwood catering to those eating a gluten-free diet: the majority of desserts are g-free so likely are made with rice or other g-free flours that tend to be slightly gritty in texture. You can truly eat at Heartwood and walk away feeling healthy and good (Heartwood also claims to be organic!). You can be sure that you will not find any grilled cheeses or fake meats on this menu!

The take-away sourdough spelt bread is good, but is an acquired taste. It's a steal when it's two days old (50% regular price!). It's the only time I buy it because the bread freezes very well.

The addition of organic beers, teas, and wines on the menu is nice. In the summer you can even find fresh juices being served.

I've had almost everything on their menu. Amazing dishes: the bean burrito, the "greens", the vegan pizza, and the miso-tahini bowl. Pretty good meals: the spicy peanut bowl, all of the sandwiches, and the soup-of-the-day has always been good. So-so meals have been: the veggie burger, the breakfast granola, and the curry bowl.

I think Heartwood is an experience. I'm sure new vegetarians will love their meal, I'm just scared that they may think that all veggie cooking is this fancy! Seasoned vegetarians and healthy eaters will LOVE this place.

Pros: Gluten free options, Organic teas and alcohol, Huge dessert section
Cons: No side dish with sandwiches, Expensive desserts, No

Great little place!

4 Posted on 05 / 21 / 2010

Myself and my other half were in Halifax recently and went to Heartwood for a late lunch one day. He had the Shooting Star Curry (a special!) and I had one of the rice bowls with Miso sauce. The food was great - vegetables very fresh, it was plentiful, and really tasty! The only slight bug in the ointment was that the sauce on my rice bowl tasted a little bit sharp, it looked and tasted like it had curdled slightly, but I'm nit-picking really - other than that the main courses were great! For afters, we had the Banana Toffee Cheesecake which, I am sad to report, was not as tasty as it looked. It had a gritty taste and was not as sweet or as creamy as other vegan cheesecakes I've tasted. Again, though, I'm nit-picking, as the dining room was clean and welcoming, the service quick, and the food in the main very tasty and filling. I would definitely recommend this place to others! GO THERE!

Pros: Good food , Good value, Fresh food and desserts

Fantastic Vegan Fare

5 Posted on 05 / 20 / 2009

We had fantastic food - vegan nachos and one of their Heartwood bowls... very flavourful. Dessert was incredibly decadent and rich too! Well priced too!

Pros: delicious, well priced

The Best

5 Posted on 11 / 15 / 2008

Heartwood is the only restaurant to go to if you appreciate healthy, local, organic, vegan food. Nowhere else compares unless you want to drive to Montreal. The food is great and they have more organic ingredients than anybody in the maritimes. The desserts are great (Chocolate Peanut Butter Banana Cheesecake, coconut cashew pie etc...) Brunch on saturday is awesome. Prices are comparable to other restaurants in town, but at Heartwood there is QUALITY. I love it. It's worth the cost (I often get the Daily special which is only $10 and is more than enough food). The most expensive thing on the menu is $13.

Pros: Healthy, Organic , Local


3 Posted on 10 / 13 / 2008

The staff was nice, and the coconut cake we had was great, but everything else, notsomuch. The rice bowl was nothing special (EASY to recreate at home). Many of the desserts had an overwhelming banana flavor, often where banana does not belong.

Pros: Coconut Cake, Staff
Cons: Price, Selection, Overall Taste


2 Posted on 04 / 15 / 2008

They have changed to format to a restaurant with a menu that has incorporated some of the dishes that were a part of the buffet. This used to be one of my favourite places. I went for lunch and had a noodle bowl and a cookie which was over $20 and my friend had a portobello sandwich with goat cheese which was almost $15. Pretty overpriced now.

Pros: good food
Cons: overpriced

Heartwood Bakery and Cafe

3 Posted on 05 / 06 / 2007

New to the vegetarian world, I thought I would give Heartwood a try. I ended up paying way too much for brown rice and a thin bland dill bean sauce. I had a piece of the chocolate tofu pie which was delicious.
I'm going to have to try the restaurant again but I don't like the idea of getting really small portions to keep the price reasonable.

Pros: VERY friendly staff, Delicious chocolate pie
Cons: Hate the weigh for pay

My favourite restaurant for years!

5 Posted on 12 / 27 / 2006

For me, the measure of a good vegetarian restaurant relies largely on the availability of delicious vegan desserts. Of all the vegetarian restaurants I have been to in all the countries I have visited, Heartwood dominates in this aspect. The desserts are all organic, no-sugar (or honey), and mostly no-wheat and are delicious! My favourites are the Pecan Pie and the Nanaimo Bars although they are all so good! As for main dishes, the pay by weight style can be expensive but eating healthy and organic is never cheap. The dishes are always good, although sometimes the mustardy potatoes are a bit dry and have obviously not been freshly made. The only drawback is that the cold salad section, while delicious, is almost always the same stuff. Overall, still the place I miss most when I am away from home...

Pros: delicious, great desserts, organic and healthy
Cons: rarely new selections


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Last updated: 2013/10/06


Added: 2007/08/01


Added by: Guest