96 Zen Etterem

  • Vegetarian Vegetarian
    ( 25 reviews )
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+36-303996117
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Kálvin tér 5, Budapest, Hungary, 1053

Opened Feb 2015 an Asian fast food restaurant serving simple vegan food along with Taiwanese bubble tea and smoothies. Please confirm whether drinks are all-vegan. Open Mon-Fri 11:00am-8:00pm, Sat 12:00pm-8:00pm.

Categories: Vegan-friendly, Chinese, Fast food, Take-out, Asian

25 Reviews

First Review by yulacs

Pleasantly Surprised - Edit

Don't be fooled by the appearance of this restaurant, it is a hidden gem. The couple that run it are so welcoming and have very good English. It is fantastic value and you get so much food - we got medium plates and were stuffed! The food is heated up after you select which dishes you want, but I prefer that than the food being constantly kept hot! It was very tasty - so good that we went back again the next day!


Updated from previous review on 2017-09-22

Pros: Very Tasty, Cheap, Filling

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Quick buffet style Asian food - Edit

So glad we found this place! We were super hungry and it was nice not to have to wait long for our food. Some great options in the buffet but I would say everything needed just a tad more flavor. They gave big portions though and were extremely nice!

Pros: Kind, Lots to choose from

Cons: Needed more flavor

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friendly prices - Edit

tasty asian foods gor very friendly prices. the service is friendly too

Pros: cheap and tasty

Cons: small place

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Cheap and lots of vegan protein - Edit

It is possible to order without rice/carbs. Lots of seitan/soy dishes. It taste good, but it is not fresh.

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Convenient to the Centre and Inexpensive - Edit

We ate here twice on our weekend in Budapest, and enjoyed their great selection of vegan dishes. We arrived each day just as they opened at 12, and just as they were cooking freshly, so we never tasted the full range of dishes. They do not use MSG, regardless of another reviewers opinion. The staff are friendly, cheerful, and ready to discuss all the dishes. They have upstairs seating, and clean toilets. A real treasure in such a meat loving city.

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Convenient and Cheap - Edit

I arrived around 7pm and they seemed to be running out of food. The person working there told me I was having a bit of everything, I think he was trying to get everything used up. But I didn't really mind so I didn't object. I had a large takeaway tub and the person couldn't fit in all the food he wanted to give me so he gave me a separate little box of radish cakes for free. He was very nice and friendly.

The food was pretty bland, but I could have just being trying what was left of the least popular dishes. But it was fine and great value for money.

I'd come again if it were the most convenient food option but I wouldn't go out of my way for it in the evening. I might try to go again earlier on to see if there are better options.

Updated from previous review on 2017-02-17

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satisfying - Edit

96 Zen Étterem is a small Chinese vegan fast food restaurant in the centre of Budapest. It is definitely not fancy, but if you remember that it is just a fast food and come with the right attitude, you will not be disappointed.
They offer a whole range of seitan and soy-based stuff, and they are pretty creative and make it varied and tasty. The food is pre-made and they use microwaves to heat it up, which is a disadvantage, but hey, it's a FAST FOOD, it's super cheap and they serve SEITAN! Tastewise, their food is highly europeanised, but the spicy soy balls still can be really spicy :-) The staff is mostly Chinese, they speak very good English and are very friendly. If you're in Budapest and need a quick snack, I definitely recommend dropping by!

Pros: ridiculously low prices, friendly staff, moderately tasty food

Cons: microwave, no air conditioning inside (as of summer 2015)

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Our guilty pleasure - Edit

This place was so close from home that we became addicted to the chinese vegan food provided by very nice people. Probably a lot of fat but we loved it so much. Thank you for the amazing food, we'll probably miss it so much when we will leave Budapest

Pros: Very cheap, Generous portions, Friendly staff

Cons: Not that healthy

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Hit & Miss - Edit

I visited this place in June 2016 and left feeling quite satisfied however I know that a lot of people would be quite disappointed if they came here.

The food options for me were great however once you've chosen what you'd like, they microwave it for you. Knowing this now, I would only visit during a peak time where hopefully the food will be fresh.

Almost all of it is soy based so people avoiding soy might not enjoy visiting.

They had something that tastes EXACTLY like the 'honey chicken' my local Chinese restaurant back home in Australia does. It was very delicious and I want to go back for this.

Everything is vegan except for fortune cookies (egg) and some drinks.

Service was great, very friendly and spoke good English however I found it strange that they could not speak Hungarian as they are clearly living and working in this country.

Pros: Friendly staff, Big portions

Cons: Very unhealthy, Microwave used to heat up older food, Some staff can't speak Hungarian

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Fast Food - Edit

The food here is definitely not healthy, but it is fast and cheap. I enjoy the food, it's a treat! The portions are generous, so I only get a small plate which is 650 forints. Lovely staff that speaks English!

Pros: cheap, quick, good portions

Cons: not healthy , not fresh

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only go here if you're desperate - Edit

It's a Chinese buffet. They use MSG. We ate here at 7pm and the food looked like it was at least a day old. I won't come back.

Pros: central location

Cons: MSG, Old food

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Really nice place - Edit

Previous review said they only accept cash, but they accept cards now! Such a good find. Good price and filling. Staff are super friendly.

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Excellent food, excellent service, excellent prices - Edit

A restaurant for my taste! You can choose a plate size and it determines how many mains you get to choose. Together we got to taste 5 different mains and they were all absolutely delicious! BBQ seitan was my favourite alongsode with vegaballs. Everything is written in English and the staff speaks very good English too. Prices were really student friendly. One of the best meals in my life and I can tell I have experience of eating out!

Pros: You can get many mains on one plate, Cheap

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Very friendly and cheap. - Edit

We were just walking by this place and decided to stop in as we always love to find new places where we can eat without fear. The staff was very friendly and all spoke english perfectly which always helps. The portion sizes were huge, they were very generous for the price. The food was pretty good, some things definitely taste better than others, the more spice the more flavorful.

Pros: Friendly Staff, English Speakers, Portion Sizes

Cons: Some options bland

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Yummy, bit heavy but cheap! - Edit

I ate here back in July 2015 a couple times, I was super pleased that it closed slightly later than most of the vegan eatteries nearby so I had a big plate of pretty much everything they had leftover! Would recommend it, just not the huge spring rolls. Beware that while the food is all vegan, you have to request a vegan bubble tea (which was nice!) Cheap, friendly, a couple of seats outside on the street.

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Excellent Chinese Canteen - Edit

I wouldn't quite describe this as a buffet, because it doesn't have that 'all you can eat' element. You choose your plate size and can choose a corresponding number of side and main dishes - all of this is explained in perfect English, so don't worry if you are confused. Everything I had was delicious: fried rice, BBQ seitan, deep-fried mushrooms and deep-fried sushi. The only problem was that the food was a little cold from sitting out on the counter. Even after the staff microwaved it, it still wasn't as hot as it should be. I'd still go back though.

Pros: Quick service, Good selection, Tasty deep fried goods

Cons: Food not quite hot enough

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Said That Everything Is Vegan, But The Drinks Were Dairy - Edit

I've been there today. It's a very small and quite inexpensive buffet run by Chinese family. The man at the counter was very nice, he speaked good English and advised us about the food. He told that everything was vegan. Then we also ordered bubble tea, but they didn't say that it's not vegan. I am afraid there was milk.. I am really disappointed about it. This is actually my fault that I didn't ask, but the large "vegan" sign at the door and the man who told that "everything is vegan" made me believe that it's a vegan restaurant. After checking info here, I realized it's not. ((
The food was bland, but for the price we paid, I didn't expect much.

Pros: Cheap

Cons: Dairy Drinks, False Information

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Disappointing... - Edit

I asked if i could have very small portions and she said it was measured by weight so that was alright. She than tried to force more food on me while i kept saying it was too much.

I had 1 box of sushi 1 scoop of fried rice and 2 scoops of potatoes. I asked for one scoop of seitan and she said it was alright. Then i got a huge plate full of seitan and she kept adding more and I was telling her to stop but she did not stop... The rest of the food was ruined by the nasty sauce. I gave the whole thing back because it was unedible. Oh! And it was also still cold...

Not recommended...

Too bad i can't give 1 cow

Pros: Cheap, Sushi was fine

Cons: nasty and still cold, tries to force more food on you to make

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Great vegan buffet style food! - Edit

Great place to get some inexpensive vegan food to eat in or take away! You pay according to the size of the plate you choose, and get a choice of a variety of mains and sides. Also the strawberry vegan ice cream was yummy and refreshing! The staff were also very friendly and spoke good English :)

Pros: Cheap vegan food, Friendly staff

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Amazing vegan options - Edit

Very kind, welcoming staff. Buffet style. Pick a plate size (small - extra large) and choose what you like to fill your plate. Lovely spring rolls an optional extra. An amazing selection of vegan dishes and tasty food. The extra large dish with spring roll proved too much for me but enjoyed every bite:) thank you:)

Pros: Lots of vegan options, Friendly, accommodating staff, Very reasonably priced

Cons: Dairy milk in the smoothies

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AMAZING - Edit

Went there every day i was in Budapest. You have to try the coconut curry and fried dumplings, so so so amazing and taste, i could not get enough!!! Other foods are very taste as well and the food is very cheap, you can get your stomach soo full for a small amount of money. Definetly recommend!!!

Pros: Friendly staff, Very cheap, Amazingly taste

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Good food - Edit

We liked this place - Asian vegan food. All food is vegan, but they do offer smoothies which have dairy. There was a wide selection of Asian food and it;s served buffet-style. You don't help yourself - you tell the server what you want and they plate it for you.

The only reason this place does not get 5 stars is that they microwaved the food which I think affected the taste/texture. They plated it, then said it was not hot and could they microwave it. I am not sure if this is what they normally do or if their buffet was broken and not keeping hot foods hot. I think the food would have been better if not microwaved.

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A good stop in Budapest - Edit

I discovered this place at Kalvin tér without having seen it on HappyCow before, and I decided to have lunch there straight away. There is a large choice of vegan meals that you can choose from the counter. They are warmed in the microwave oven after you chose, which I didn't really like, but my meal was very tasty nevertheless. There are different options of how to combine your meal - I got the meal deal where you can choose two main dishes and one side dish. There are many Asian choices, but also European ones.
I also ordered a mango juice, but unfortunately I got bubble tea instead which I hate - I noticed too late, though, so I didn't say anything.

The staff's English was very, very good and the location is not too bad. I recommend this place if you are in the area (only watch out when ordering your drink).

Pros: Tasty food , Friendly, English-speaking staff

Cons: Food heated in microwave

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I love this place:) - Edit

I am so happy this place opened:) I live next to this place, so I come here all the time. Food is good:) service is great:) it's just perfect:) and the price is so cheap:) I'm planning to eat here everyday:)

Pros: Great food, Great service , Cheap

Cons: A bit salty

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Tasty,cheap and friendly service - Edit

Note:Somehow this place is twice in the website. So I am putting my review also here so it will not be lost in case one of links is removed.

The people in the restaurant is incredible friendly, ready to receive you with a smile. If you are looking for the thai flavors without eat any piece of meat this if your place. I was really missing some sausage from asian restaurants which are usually used with meat. So discover this place where they used kind of the same sausage but with soja and seitan version was quite an amazing surprise. Some dishes are better than other in my opinion, but you can ask for a little bit of several things the first time so you can decide which ones you like the most for the next time. The bubble tea is also quite a experience. Most of the dishes are Vegan and some of them are vegetarian

Pros: Cheap, Tasty, Friendly service

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