22 Reviews

First Review by steveveg

Fabulous food in a great atmosphere - Edit

My husband and I took our daughter out to dinner here, and the whole experience was terrific. Every dish we ordered was beautifully presented and delicious.

Pros: Vegan, Nice bar

Cons: Expensive

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

What a find! - Edit

This place was so amazing! It was an entirely vegan restaurant so there were so many great options! The food was creative and interesting! I definitely want to go back!

Pros: Everything is vegan, So vegan desserts and fake cheeses!

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

A flavorless disappointment - Edit

It breaks my heart to write this, but I must be honest. Four of us were excited to have dinner here, having had wonderful experiences at both Candle 79 and the other Candle Cafe location.

What a disappointment.

To begin with, it was oppressively hot in the restaurant. Even our waiter had sweat running down his face, which is not something you want to see on someone serving your food.

The service was poor and the food was inedible. We began with the avocado tartare and the vegetable quesadilla appetizers. The avocado tartare was a few bites of flavorless mush. How it is possible to ruin avocado, I do not know.

The quesadilla appetizer is only big enough for only one person and it was far from flavorfel - only barely edible.

We also ordered focaccia bread, which was cold, stale, dry and flavorless. Again, completely inedible. We could not believe they even served it.

One person had an entree salad which consisted of a big plate of arugula and a few tiny additions. Mostly just a plate of arugula, despite a long list of things that were supposed to be on it. We were embarrassed for them at this point, and wondered if we were on candid camera.

One person had the daily pasta special, which sounded delectable by the description, but had none of the flavors one would expect from the ingredients. It was marginal at best. No amount of salt and pepper could save it.

I had the risotto, which was the worst vegan meal I have had in my life. It was 100 percent devoid of flavor, much like everything else. Despite copious amounts of salt and pepper on all of our food, it was simply impossible to make anything edible. It was almost as if they have some magical process to drain all of the flavor from the food before it is served.

After the horrific appetizers our fourth person did not even want to order an entree.

One person had a beer, which was served in a lovely bottle with a matching glass. The beer was old and stale - undrinkable. One person asked three different servers for a glass of wine and finally got one 25 minutes later.

This was truly the worst vegan dinner of our lives. The service was poor, the food was worse. I hate to say this, because as a lifelong vegan, I love to support vegan restaurants.

This food was so bad we literally left it all on the table. It was inedible. After we left, we stopped by a stand on the street and bought peanuts and beer, which were markedly better than our $250 dinner.

Run!

Pros: Great location

Cons: Flavorless, horrible food, Poor service, Expensive

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

I wanted to love this place - Edit

This is the most beautiful of the three locations and closest to where I live. Unfortunately we have had so many bad experiences with the service there that we finally gave up on this place.

Now we just go to both locations on the east side, where not only service but also food is much better.

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Fine Dining with Fabulous Food - Edit

My favorite meal of my 6-day trip to NYC, by far! While NYC has a lot of vegan eateries, very few are sit down, or this nice. But Candle Cafe West was an amazing experience—from ordering off the all-vegan wine menu to sampling a range of different foods, it was perfect. The atmosphere is wonderful.

The food is melt-in-you-mouth delicious!

Pros: Superb food, Atmosphere, Quality food

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

In love! - Edit

This is the place to bring your vegan partner to fall in love. The food is amazing and the whole atmosphere was magical.

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Reviewer Avatar
Herbivore

  Contributions +286

Another Candle Success! - Edit

I was thrilled when this latest Candle establishment opened near me on the upper westside and they have not disappointed. An elegant space with a great bar area. The food is excellent with a nice mix of options. Best of all, they clearly mark the menu with the gluten free options.

Pros: Westside locale, Excellent food, Grown up bar

Cons: Restrooms are down steep stairs

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Excellent! dinner was superb can't wait to come back! - Edit

Service was perfect and classy,the food was delicious and varied.
The drinks and cocktails menu was full and contemporary.
We shared many dishes and each one was perfect!
Interesting to hear that one of the specials had Israeli cuscus wondering what that meant as cuscus is Moroccan we ordered it and it turned out to be "Ptitim" something very Israeli not even close in texture,size nor taste to Cuscus but delicious.
The food was awesome!

Pros: Delicious , Big portions, Great Bar

Cons: Not cheap, must order in advance , Makes you crave it's food

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

disappointing - Edit

A hallmark of New York veganism, the Candle Cafe was on my vegan bucket list and I paid a visit during a recent visit to New York. Having eaten their frozen entrees, I was looking forward to trying the real thing, fresh out of the oven. Unfortunately, I did not find the menu to be very diverse or appealing. My meal was good, but didn't offer much in the way of creativity or uniqueness. It felt like the restaurant was relying on its name and fame to bring in customers, without actually focusing on having a creative menu. For the prices I was paying, I really had expected a lot more.

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Top NYC Vegan spot - Edit

Creative, well executed and unusual dishes mark this lovely venue.

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Deeply disappointed - Edit

Perhaps it is because I had dinner at Candle 79 a couple of days ago and everything was spectacular, but it seems like from appetizer to desert, Candle Cafe West's food lacked flavor and presentation. Specially the carrot cake, it looked and tasted like Olive Garden's.

Pros: Awesome music, Good service

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

OMG..I want to move to NYC! - Edit

The food here is amazing...I mean EVERYTHING is amazing. If I had the room in my body, I would have sampled everything on the menu. Every time I go there, I try something different, and I haven't run out of things to try yet.

Pros: extensive menu, quality product, fantastic service

Cons: haven't found any yet

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

2nd visit - Edit

Visited the restaurant for the second time and loved it again. The food seemed to be more creative than last year on my first visit. Good mix of cooked and raw dishes. Had the Indian curry cake and grilled tempeh as mains. Both dishes boosted with flavours and were very pretty to look at. That was vegan food at it's best. No non-vegan would miss their meat. Only the chocolate cake was a bit dry but in combination with the ice cream a tasty dish. Service was good and efficient.

Pros: Creative dishes, Good taste, pretty presentation, Service staff

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

excellent food, shabby service - Edit

Went on a weeknight when a reservation was not needed. Upscale decor, prices, eclectic menu with contemporary flavor combinations. I really enjoyed the food at dinner.
Problem was the service. Lots of staff just standing around, doing nothing. So many servers, they used a tag-team approach that left customers without anyone to ask for help, no continuity in service. I ordered a drink, then 10 minutes later ordered food. My food arrived, then 5 minutes later my cocktail [weak, couldn't detect a hint of Tequila] was delivered. I started to object, but they were gone. Plate was promptly cleared and I was asked if I wanted to see a dessert menu. I said no, but... the server was gone before I could order a salad-- portions were small and pricey and I left hungry.
The food was very good, but the servers were uncaring despite the large number of them standing around doing nothing but talking among themselves. For a fancy, expensive, upscale restaurant it was terrible to deliver the cocktail after the entree!
Still, the food was so good, I may try it again.

Pros: great food, eclectic flavors, menu, nice atmosphere

Cons: poor, weak cocktail served late, terrible, inattentive service, expensive

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Vegan Bliss - Edit

I was THRILLED when I found out that Candle Cafe opened a West Side location. I LOVE the original Candle Cafe and am so thrilled they opened a location closer to where I live. This location is bigger and has a more elegant ambiance than the original UES location. The menus are very similar; the Candle Nachos, Seitan Chimichurri, Cajun Seitan sandwich and Seitan Piccata are not to be missed. The desserts and smoothies are all excellent. I went to Candle Cafe West with my family to celebrate my birthday, and the staff put a candle in the dessert I ordered and wished me a very happy birthday. This is a vegan restaurant you definitely MUST check out while visiting/living in NYC.

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Superb Gourmet Experience! - Edit

We went here for my sister's birthday celebration and it was an amazing experience. Not only is the place all vegan, the produce is organic. We shared several appetizers and salads to start. I especially loved the vegetable ravioli, which were large and delicious and served with sauteed spinach. Also the roasted beet salad came with a dollop of almond cheese that was out of this world. I had the chanterelle-crusted tofu for my main course and it was divine. The service was first rate. I would heartily recommend this place to anyone, no matter whether vegan or omnivore, who enjoys excellent food. The place is expensive - our bill came to a little over $300 (5 people), including appetizers, drinks, mains, and dessert. Well worth it!

Pros: Delicious gourmet food, All vegan, Fantastic service

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Fantastic casual dining - Edit

We really enjoyed eating here. Our waitress was friendly and helpful, the food was fabulous quality and the dining experience was great. It is a great casual dining. We had the seitan skewers, nachos, cooked kale salad and the empanadas - they were all really delicious. I would definatley come back. An easy 5/5 stars.

Pros: Great quality food, Friendly Service , Comfortable environment

Cons: None come to mind

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Outstanding experience - Edit

I arrived for lunch on a Tuesday before the rush. The service was friendly and prompt and the BBQ tempeh sandwich was delightful. Would go again.

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Memorable Birthday Dinner - Edit

I asked to be taken to this vegetarian restaurant for my birthday, and I wasn't disappointed. My husband and I enjoyed the experience immensely; the food, the ambiance and the service. I started out with a WATERMELON BASIL CHIA FRESCA drink, which was fun and interesting...not sure if it is a repeat drink, but I'm glad I tried it. They offer about 20 creative non-alcoholic drinks and they all sound wonderful. Their tomato-avocado tartare appetizer is out of this world as was their wild mushroom salad. My husband wasn't quite as fond of the cornmeal-crusted tempeh, but my daily special main course was divine. A table nearby had ordered the spaghetti and wheatballs (love the name), and it smelled delicious. For dessert we split a trio of sorbets, and we loved two out of three. I highly recommend this restaurant, not just for vegetarians but for the adventurous diner. The fare is creative, beautiful and delicious...this is high style dining, and you will have a memorable experience.

Pros: Creative and generous dishes, Wonderful ambiance & service, Delicious combinations

Cons: Has bustling atmosphere, Needs reservations - gets booked

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Great environment - Edit

Enjoy vegan food in a fine dining atmosphere. I are the nachos, which, at $16 and listed as an appetizer, I thought would be sufficient for a meal. They were delicious but a very small serving. Still, the waitress was nice and my order came quickly. Will return with friends.

Pros: quick service, atmosphere

Cons: price

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Classy and fabulous! - Edit

All of the servers I came in contact with at Candle Cafe West were so kind, attentive, and friendly. The food was elegantly displayed, tasted delicious and provided a good amount of variety. The restaurant is classy, beautiful, and all vegan & organic! What else can you ask for! It's a big pricey, but a good place to splurge. Great experience there!

Pros: friendly staff, delicious food, classy decor

Cons: expensive prices

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Candle makes welcome addition to the West Side - Edit

As might be expected, Candle Cafe West's menu bears some similarities to its sister restaurants, Candle 79 and Candle Cafe. In keeping with the quality of the other Candles, I found the food delicious, the setting appealing, service excellent, and the restaurant's mission of organic and seasonal food laudatory. These restaurants are among my very favorites. We had among us a seaweed salad, the mole fajitas, chipotle grilled tofu and the special fettuccine. I especially enjoyed the fajitas and tofu. There was a substantial gluten-free menu. For dessert we had the berry crumble, with a variety of berries, and the peanut butter chocolate mousse pie. Both were excellent, flavorful and not overly sweet. We were very pleased to have this addition to the West Side.

Pros: organic vegan, delicious & varied menu, fine service

Read More

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Link to this page from your site. .
Return to New York City Vegetarian Restaurants & Health Food Store Listings
Business Owners, if you see an unfair review, read this.
Why was my review removed? - details / Review guidelines
Reviews are not endorsed by HappyCow - review terms
Has Candle Cafe West closed, shut down, moved, or changed? Please use the Update Form.
This page has been viewed 9782 times.

Keep HappyCow Growing Strong!

I would like to support