All Reviews by AshleyLorden
1624 University Ave, Berkeley, USA
Great little shop!
As a sign at Republic of V will tell you, they're 1 of only 8 all-vegan stores in the US. That's pretty sad, but it means you should take the time to stop by if you're in Berkeley, support them and discover a fun new product!
It's metered street parking for this small shop with an appealing variety of dry and refrigerated/frozen vegan food staples as well as a small lifestyle section with things like vegan slogan T-shirts, pins and bumper stickers, and animal-free belts, wallets, purses, and skincare. They also have a pets rack with food and treats for dogs and cats. Featured are both local products like Miyoko's cheeses, fresh S+M sandwiches, Califia Farms almond milks, as well as specialty products imported from around the world.
Although it's definitely not a replacement for shopping elsewhere (no produce, etc.), it's worth it to add Republic of V to your routine to discover vegan products at competitive prices in a really positive atmosphere. Also a go for shopping for a vegan if you're unfamiliar with the products, new/transitioning people to discover a lot of excellent resources, or anyone who might normally resort to order specialty products online (Matt+Nat bags, vegan fish oil, bulk nutritional yeast...) to check out in person.
75 O'Farrell St, San Francisco, USA
No vegan selection
They only have 1-2 vegan items at any given time of day, so if they run out of those there won't be anything for a vegan to eat. I tried to visit but they didn't seem to have vegan items available, and when I asked, the staff was not able to help.
Humboldt 2192, Palermo Viejo, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Intimate all-organic and vegetarian
Bio is a small and welcoming restaurant with room for maybe 30 inside and several tables outside on the sidewalk if the weather is nice. It's all-organic and all-vegetarian, they do have dairy cheese and ice cream but also have a few dishes with vegan cheese and ice cream alternatives. About 60-70% of the whole menu is or can be made vegan so there are plenty of choices. They also have about 10 raw dishes so if you're looking for high-quality food in Buenos Aires, this is an excellent resource. In addition to their main purpose as a restaurant, they also have some organic food products for sale as well as cooking classes and do catering. The menu is in Spanish and English and I believe some of the staff speak English.
It is a hard area to park on the street in, they do offer validation for one hour at one parking lot so if you're planning to pay for parking check which lot first. They accept reservations and I recommend calling ahead if going at a popular time like weekend dinner as the place is fairly small and does fill up.
In the evening, they light candles and it's a fun environment; I've seen a number of birthday dinners there. When you're seated, they'll bring you bread and a (vegan) spread complimentary starter. I recommend the rice empanadas which get a tiny bit crunchy and were excellent -- the filling varies but I believe is always vegan. In my experience all the dishes are good and filling but a few seem to be rather salty so ask if you're sensitive to that. Be sure to save room for dessert! They also have a limited wine and beer selection and even a few vodka drinks, as well as natural fruit juices. I haven't been for breakfast or lunch but they do have offerings for all times of day.
187 9th Ave, New York City, USA
NYE prix fixe - very $$ but nice
I found myself with a group of 6 in NYC on January 30th with no plans for New Years Eve, and I was thinking I'd end up eating from a falafel cart, freezing in the street, or watching the TV broadcast from the hotel. Amazingly, Blossom saved the day by accepting our reservation for the following evening, where we languished over wine and the 3-course prix fixe, celebrating in the warmth of their romantic, welcoming little restaurant.
Service was attentive and accommodating, from the afternoon call to confirm our evening reservation to the kind atmosphere in the restaurant. Inside was a formal yet welcoming vibe with deep colors. The one drawback was despite a curtain separating the hallway from the dining room, drafts of the cold winter night kept coming in -- I noticed they had a heater near the door but that didn't stop us from getting chills! Perhaps a solid door at the hallway would be a good idea. I noticed when I went upstairs to use the restroom they had a few more tables tucked away there, out of the main dining room -- possibly a good place to host a group in relative privacy during a normal meal service.
I can't comment on the normal food menu since we chose from prix fixe for the holiday, but the wine selection was good. The food we had was interesting and worthy of a trip there, since I wouldn't make gourmet vegan dishes like that at home or find in other restaurants. They used Daiya and seitan along with nut creams to feature some "imitation" dishes like cordon bleu and cheesecake, as well as offering more traditionally vegan fare such as risotto.
It was expensive so Blossom wouldn't be in my budget for an everyday meal, but it was a wonderful choice for a special occasion and I'd go back.
56/3 Pan St, Silom, Bangkok, Thailand
Expensive but Wonderful Refuge
The Japanese-Thai family who run Bonita care about the food they serve you just as much as when you make it yourself at home from scratch, and that's why it's worth it to pay quite a lot (think standard western prices) to eat here. While they have a short food menu, everything we tried was really tasty, along with being super healthy. It's 100% vegan and offers many raw, gluten-free, and sugar-free options. There's wifi and outlets so it makes a great place to camp out for a few hours to enjoy some treats and escape Bangkok with friendly company and a homey environment.
309 Clement St, San Francisco, USA
Great spot, be prepared to wait for table
San Franciscans fawn over Burma Superstar and its tea leaf salad, and I have to agree, it's probably the best salad I've ever eaten. Arguably the most famous and most upscale of Burmese restaurants in the city (the others are mostly hole-in-the-wall), the food, service and ambiance are all very good here, while still being an informal place to relax over a meal with friends, family or a date.
The downside? You'll almost certainly have to wait outside the restaurant (there's a bench if you can get a spot) for your table unless you time a visit exactly right, as it's always crowded. You'll also be sitting close enough to the people around you that it's not a good place to have a private conversation. Try sending someone ahead to get on the list while you park (you'll probably need to circle the surrounding streets), or wander through nearby Green Apple Books while you wait. Be sure to wear layers if it's cold!
The upside? Fresh, healthy, colorful, delicious food. The tea leaf salad with tea directly from Burma is unmissable. There's a good selection of vegan dishes (some are spicy, be careful if you don't like it hot!). There's a happy, buzzing vibe and eating here will make you feel good.
Prices are moderate and well worth it.
We brought my rather close-minded parents here who don't normally eat any Asian food except American-Chinese, and they loved it and can't wait to go back.
3815 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, USA
Good family Burmese restaurant
Although not an institution like the more well-known Burma Superstar, you won't have to wait for a table at Burmese Kitchen, tucked in one of the city's last remaining low-rent areas (read: creative and inexpensive family restaurants), the Tenderloin, with a number of authentic southeast asian restaurants worth the trip down otherwise unsavory blocks. This one is in close enough proximity to civic center, you might combine a visit to Burmese Kitchen with a trip to the beautiful main public library, Asian Art Museum, or city hall.
It's a small restaurant but I've never had trouble getting a seat. The dishes you'll eat from are plain and plastic -- there's not attention to presentation here -- but the gorgeous colorful salads speak for themselves. The menu helpfully includes a label for all "vegan" dishes (of which there are many) although I believe there's one exception to watch out for, a dish made with egg noodles that is labeled vegan. It clearly says egg noodles in the description. I recommend ordering mostly from the first page; I believe the exciting and flavorful salads and noodle plates are the menu's highlights, while the "vegetables" section features simple curries and dishes that will fill you with goodness, but are not outstanding.
An interesting, affordable and delicious place.
247 Shoreline Hwy, Mill Valley, USA
fresh casual cafe
In an outdoor shopping center/strip mall, Cafe del Soul is a casual health-focused cafe with plenty of indoor and outdoor seating. Should be dog-friendly if you eat outside. The menu states "anything can be made vegan" but I wasn't confident the person taking our order knew what vegan meant. I don't think there are any vegan dishes on menu, you have to ask for no cheese on whatever you order and most come with choice of chicken or tofu. Given their extensive use of cheese I was hoping they'd have a vegan option but was disappointed.
We ordered at counter some wraps which were quickly delivered to our table. They were very fresh, and were satisfying but a little sad to pay $9-10 for a wrap and not get any sides. Overall though we were happy with the food.
Western Hwy , San Ignacio, Belize
Best ice cream in San Ignacio and it's vegan!!
Cayo Twist is a small wooden building with a large patio for casual seating. They have a hand-written sign with featured flavor choices, a window to order and another to pick up treats. There's usually a line, but you shouldn't have to wait very long.
The ice cream is soy-based and it's all handmade there. It's good, and seems sent from heaven on most days with the heat and humidity in Belize. You can get waffle cones ~$2 USD with either soft serve or scoops or a quart of ice cream to share or take home ~$5 USD. They also have special treats like sundaes and other creations but I think most people just go for straight ice cream.
It's toward the edge of town in San Ignacio, going towards Guatemala.
Very recommended! Just check the hours carefully since they're pretty limited.
2132 Oxford St, Berkeley, USA
Yes, Cinnaholic is in fact amazing.
What a great concept, all-vegan delicious specialty cinnamon rolls. Very similar to Cinnabon in selection, although Cinnaholic features a large variety of customizable toppings with none of the dairy yuckiness.
You can choose from fruity to full-on chocolate dessert mini or full-size rolls. So good for sure, but, be warned, if you're like me and don't eat loads of sugar regularly it will be really sweet, so maybe choose toppings to balance that out. (or consider buying some non-dairy milk to wash it down!)
The only negative is that it's a busy restaurant/store area so it won't be easy to find a parking spot to pick some up. Try going at an off-time or taking public transit.
PS. I heard through VeganSaurus that they're now going to franchise Cinnaholic to bring the yumminess to more communities, awesome!
1150 Market St, San Francisco, USA
Grungy, good selection
The largest unfancy farmer's market in the city, with at least a dozen different farm stands selling fresh produce, some organic, some not. You can find everything here. There are also a handful of prepared food trucks at one end. This location is literally city center, so be prepared for limited parking options and good public transit/walkability. Not really a good neighborhood but should be fine in the morning, and right next to the beautiful main SF public library and Civic Center.
2293 Mission St, San Francisco, USA
Fun new vegan upscale American classics
Citizen Fox is a bar and restaurant that is supposed to be opening in a permanent location soon, but for now is doing some events and is open for pop-ups on Friday nights and Sunday mornings in a temporary location near the permanent home in the Mission. The temporary location is actually a really nice restaurant space, with beautiful wood interior, full bar, ~5 booths and 2 long communal tables for seating, and an open kitchen.
I've seen Citizen Fox at some other events such as the Streat Food Park's Vegan Sundays, and the food then was not super impressive. I have also heard that at one such occasion, they bought non-vegan bread and served it to vegan customers without informing them, which is not cool.
However, when I went to their pop-up location for a Sunday brunch, the food was really good. It was upscale in the sense of being carefully prepared, well-balanced and a lot of effort put into the cooking. The environment was casual though -- we were seated on stools next to other diners. We got drinks which I felt was not good value, a very tiny mimosa (half a champagne glass full) for $8 if I remember correctly. Also, I would not recommend the package prix fixe that you can buy ahead of time, it didn't seem to be a good value compared to just ordering off the menu.
I recommend you go to a pop-up for the food! Be prepared to sit quite close to strangers; it'll be worth it.
4 stars for now -- hoping to upgrade to 5 once the location/hours/etc settles.
91, rue de Chemin Vert, Paris, France
Tasty food, slooowww service
It gets quite crowded so try to come early or late for mealtime. The women working here are nice but get overwhelmed and the place is generally unrushed, so be prepared for a long, relaxed meal -- it may be 10-15 minutes before you even get menus. The veggie combo platter plus an extra order of lentils were a very full meal for two people, and the food was all fresh, hot and good. The negative was just waiting for service; we never got any drinks because they didn't bring them.
All that said, I would still go back for the food.
Av Lago del Desierto S/N, El Chalten, Argentina
Argentine comfort food with vegan options!
While looking for a restaurant that had a table available and something vegan to eat in El Chaltén, we ran into La Senyera. It looks like a traditional Argentinian restaurant, so in a town where we couldn't get vegan pasta, I didn't have much hope. Imagine our surprise to find that about 1/2 their menu is a variety of healthy and comforting vegetarian dishes, and there are about 5 vegan plates to choose from, including salad, falafel, burgers, and hot stews/casseroles. For vegetarians, they had fun empanada selections too.
La Senyera is a comfortable, friendly restaurant. It's one of the more affordable places in town, and the staff are helpful locals. Order the fries, it's a giant bowl :)
38 Pan Road, Bangkok, Thailand
This restaurant is trying to be too many different things and is not making customers a priority, unfortunately. I entered through a door that says "pure vegetarian" to an area with tables for diners, awkwardly filled with what I assume were the restaurater's family/friends, and someone ushered me to an adjoining room which I soon figured out what a non-veg Indian restaurant to which I was handed the menu. I went back to the "vegetarian side" only to be sent back to the other restaurant with a smaller paper vegetarian menu. It was limited and then I was told they didn't have basic items like naan bread. A fellow customer handed me tamarind chutney from his table after he heard the waiter tell me they didn't have it! We did end up getting vegetarian food that was okay, but the menu had limited selections for vegans. On the way out we saw another list of Burmese dishes, which we would have preferred had we known! Overall, lack of service, very confusing experience. I would not recommend other HappyCow users visit, or if you do to be prepared to demand what you want.
Thong Nai Pan Yai Beach, Thong Nai Pan, Koh Phangan, Thailand
Tasty, Authentic Thai Food!
Almost all the dishes on the menu here have a veg option and as vegans we found plenty of choice -- papaya salad and veggie/tofu pad thai made without shrimp paste or fish sauce as we requested, coconut cream curries and vegetable-rice dishes that are vegan without any special requests, even desserts based around banana, mango, and coconut. Since it's not a vegetarian or vegan restaurant you have the downside of having to pay attention to what you order, but on Koh Phangan all the veg places we found were heavily western-influenced whereas here the food is authentically asian (and very inexpensive!). If you're looking to try local, seasonal, fresh food celebrating those beautiful fruits and traditional flavors, and you'd like to eat vegetarian or vegan, I recommend Pan Thong. Find it amongst the 10 or so businesses in Thong Nai Pan Yai.
They do have a decent selection of drinks, including beer and cocktails, for such a small restaurant. Additionally, you can get food and drink to take away (picnic on the beach?).
The two downsides are that they have only outdoor seating with no anti-mosquito measures, so be prepared for that, and that it's run by just one person with occasional help, so you can't expect a lot of table-side service. They do currently have a puppy running around which should provide plenty of entertainment, however!
Florida 102, Buenos Aires, Argentina
Relaxed microcentro cafe
On busy Florida, a tourist- and shopper-heavy pedestrian-only street in Buenos Aires' microcentro (in other cities sometimes called the financial district), Picnic is a relaxed refuge. Reminiscent of a north american cafe/bookstore type place, it's more about good vibes than outstanding food. With several levels of small tables and large windows, many people were taking the time to talk with their tablemates, read, or work (on my visit in October 2014 wifi was available but quite weak). All-vegan food offerings included snacks such as coffee, smoothies (the watered-down light version preferred in Argentina), and pastries, as well as combo meals with burgers, sandwiches, salads, or lasagna. Takeaway foods were available in a grab-n-go section in front.
While the food was okay, not exceptionally good, I enjoyed my time here and it's such a treat to not worry about getting food that is vegan in a place like Argentina. I will be back.
via di San Basilio 66, Rome, Italy
Nice atmosphere and food, no wifi though
The cafe has a bright, clean and calm interior and seems like a nice place to spend some time reading or working. Unfortunately when I visited this week their wifi was not working so that was disappointing. I was a little surprised to receive food done in a more 'gourmet' style -- big plate with not so much food. But, the gnocchi I had was actually one of the best ever, super soft and pillowy.
They didn't immediately understand what 'vegan' was, but eventually I did see several food options, along with fresh-squeezed juices.
I would go back with some offline way to spend an afternoon!