CLOSED: Bonobo's Vegetarian Restaurant

  • Vegan Vegan
    ( 13 reviews )



18 East 23 St (at Madison, Midtown, Manhattan), New York City, New York, USA, 10010

One of several New York City raw food restaurants. Menu is all raw, organic whenever possible, similar to the diet of the bonobo (a kind of chimp). Overlooks Madison Square Park. Reported closed to HappyCow.

Category: Vegan, American, International, Organic, Juice bar, Delivery, Take-out, Catering, All Raw

Reviews (13)

First Review by Poundie

Bonobo's Vegetarian Restaurant - Edit

Right off of Madison Square Park you'll find the wonderful raw vegan restaurant, Bonobo's - what a great location. The employees are very friendly and helpful in describing the foods available and in picking out what's right for you. The set up was more of a deli style, and you simply select what you'd like right at the counter. I tried a few things here - the spinach avocado soup was not for me, but the basil tomato soup and the pineapple dessert (with coconut meat) was great. If the weather is nice during your visit, I suggest getting your food to go and head over the the park.

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Simple tasty raw food, friendly staff - Edit

This was our first stop on our Raw Food tour of New York. It's more of a canteen than a restaurant, simple food like salads, nut burgers and veggie salads such as broccoli or cauliflower in a tahini dressing. Lots of choices and options and decent size portions. Think they also sell Thai coconuts but they were out of stock when we where there.

Pros: Easy to find, lots of salads, friendly staff

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Bonobos cafeteria of wonder - Edit

This cafeteria style restaurant is a gem for those who find themselves in Manhattan. Easy to get to by subway and foot this incredible restaurant features excellent food in a laid back setting. The staff is always super friendly and ready to help you make an informed decision about all of the interesting food offered.

I love it here! All the food is incredible, with tastes you never imagined, especially from raw food. What is perhaps most gratifying is how close to nature this food sticks. None of that raw pizza and raw pasta business, this restaurant imitates the diet of a bonobo, a monkey, resulting in food wonderfully combined but without copying cooked food. After all, if we wanted pasta and bread...we could go elsewhere. Vegetable and nut salads, vegetable and fruit and coconut smoothies, all absolutely delicious. Every dish is a surprise of flavor.

The prices are a little much for the struggling college student, but quiet reasonable considering what they are offering you!

Wholesome and tasty, I always leave feeling super satisfied and light, and looking forward to my next visit!

Pros: excellent food, healthy cuisine, friendly staff

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Blech - Edit

I found the restaurant in The Vegan Guide to NYC 2009 and took a walk there. I had the mango fruit "ice cream" (I forgot what it's called). It's just frozen shaved mango. Anyway, it was ok, but it tasted like freezer. Yuck. It would have helped if they a) covered it, or b) not sell old and exposed products. I got some crackers. Gross. I couldn't down them so I fed them to the birds. I also had a coconut chai cold drink. It was ok. Nothing special. I should have tried the plain coconut water. I was interested to see if it was any good. I find that it's hard to find good coconut water unless it's right from the coconut. I wish they had more of a selection.

Pros: Salad

Cons: Not appetizing

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Great Prices, Awesome Selection, FAST!! - Edit

Bonobos is one of our favorites. We like it because it is a short walk from the subway and they have a great selection of prepared salads (not the green leafy kind). The prices are incredible for prepared raw food in Manhattan.
They have a great selection of drinks.

They even have durian. I was always afraid to buy one because I didn't want to waste it if I didn't like it.
I tried it for the first time at Bonobos. It is like pineapple with onions. I really liked it.

Oh they also have a decent bathroom, which is a plus in Manhattan.

Pros: Cheap, RAW, FAST

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Health Code Violations-Beware - Edit

In NYC it takes 28 points to force a restaurant to close for health code violations. In my reading of inspection reports, points are commonly handed out for things a raw food restaurant shouldn't have issue with (e.g., not cooking foods properly).
Bonobo's scored 38 points and got shut down for a bit.
5.) Evidence of mice or live mice present in facility's food and/or non-food areas.

Pros: raw, vegan

Cons: mice, violations

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Great inspiration for Raw Vegans - Edit

For anyone interested in the raw vegan lifestyle, Bonobo's is one of those places of great inspiration. I recommend, for newbies, the carrot pate salad. I considered going raw once after seeing the endless possibilities at Bonobo's and therefore I think it was inspirational. Did I go through with the raw vegan lifestyle? No. But I feel that you can't go wrong with eating at Bonobo's everyday. Living food for living bodies.

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My favorite, least pretentious raw food resto - Edit

The thing I like most about bonobo's are the fresh/raw veggie entrees. Definitely one of the best tasting raw places in the city, and I like the simplicity of going without table service. I think a lot of vegetarian restaurants forget that the basis of the diet should be VEGETABLES, and instead try to make everything a non meat version of a traditional meat dish , rather than making the most out of the flavors of vegetables.

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Disappointing - Edit

I had a coconut/pineapple blend and a salad with a vinaigrette
dressing. It was a very hot day, so the thick, lukewarm coconut/pineapple blend didn't go down well. The salad and dressing was very watery.

Pros: healthy, vegan

Cons: food

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Loved Monkeying Around in the Big Apple - Edit

My boyfriend and I were on an East Coast vacation last week that started out in NYC. Of course I printed out Happy Cow's Restaurant Guide as soon as we booked out hotel and wouldn't you know it, Bonobo's was 2 blocks away from where we were staying! I had high hopes for this place and I was not disappointed and neither was my boyfriend (a big carnivore). We got the sampler platter, the tomato soup, and a strawberry/banana/mango smoothie. Everything was very flavorful, espcially the asian salad scoop on the sampler platter. And the tomato soup was better than any hot tomato soup I have ever eated. We washed everything down with their perfectly sweet/tart agave lemonade and topped off our meal with one of their lucious Mesquite truffles. The staff was very friendly and and helpful and I loved that they encourage sampling. I hope they open a resturant in Los Angeles!

Pros: healthy, delicious, samples

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Didn't sell me on all-raw - Edit

The staff is friendly, and I guess they have a pretty decent selection of all-raw foods. Prices are a bit high. I shelled out over ten bucks for a nori wrap with a salad. It tasted fair at best, and then I was hungry an hour later. I paid it a visit once, and I don't think I'll be going back.

Pros: Good raw selection

Cons: Expensive, Food not so tasty

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Thumbs UP for Bonobo's - Edit

I am a raw vegan and I was recently in NYC for the weekend. I had heard about Bonobo's and decided to give it a try. I'm so glad I did! I ended up eating every meal at Bonobo's while I was there. I made my own salad, adding all of the fresh organic veggies that I wanted. The tahini salad dressing was to die for! The nut pates were amazing. I also got a salad sampler plate. This contained several different types of salads; 1) broccoli with garlic and pine nuts (absolutely delicious, 2) kale with citrus dressing (very good), 3) curried cauliflower (amazing), 4) asian salad (to die for), and 5) about three or four different types of nut meat salads (all were amazing).
The staff was friendly and helpful. They allow you to sample all of the food before purchasing which was really helpful in decision making. If you're going to be in the NYC area - don't miss this little gem!

Pros: Excellent Food, Healthy Cuisine, Good Value & samples!

Cons: Out of durian ice cream

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All raw - Edit

Counter service raw food. The food here is OK, though I must say my stomach sometimes is a bit queasy after (as is often the case with raw food places).

Pros: raw food, cheap

Cons: raw food, cheap

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