CLOSED: Darby's Cafe

  • Veg-options Veg-options
    ( 13 reviews )



105 Franklin SE (at the Three Magnets Brewing Company building), Olympia, Washington, USA

Serves meat, vegan options available. Popular brunch spot, busy on weekends. Vegan biscuits & gravy, tempeh reuben, tofu scramble, fresh orange juice, and more. Non-smoking. Relocated from 211 5th Ave. Confirmed closed, Jan 2018.

Categories: Vegan-friendly, Lacto, Ovo, American, Non-veg

13 Reviews

First Review by thrulooknglass

Very inconsistent! - Edit

I've been to Darby's many times over the past ten years. They are now co-located with the 3 Magnets Brewing Company. Due to this co-location, the Darby's portion of the restaurant is only open until 3 P.M.

You cannot expect a good experience here. You also cannot expect a bad experience. The customer service has improved a lot over the years. The food is totally inconsistent. On a good day, they have the best vegan food in town. I love the She's Got N'Eggs Omelette with kale, Daiya, and golden raisins. There are numerous other delicious vegan options on the menu. On a bad day, your food is prepared poorly and they are out of half the ingredients. Another downside for a breakfast joint is, they do not offer vegan pancakes, French toast, or any other sweet options.

Pros: Awesome food when they get it right, Lots of vegan options, Customer service has improved a lot

Cons: They mess up the food sometimes, They run out of ingredients frequently

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unhelpful, not good food - Edit

We had to ask several people if certain items are vegan and sort of felt at the end like they were just saying yes to placate us. For the record, they say the chocolate powder for mochas is vegan, and that the smart balance they use on pancakes and such is vegan. The butter issue is suspect, though, because different people told us different things.

Our drinks and food took awhile, my potatoes were undercooked to the point of being crunchy, and overall I wasn't thrilled. I wouldn't come back.

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Not so Veg-friendly... - Edit

Yes, Darby's does serve some delicious vegan food, especially their biscuits and gravy! But...they cooked my food in the same pan that they had just cooked an omelet in. I watched them do it, and not only did I get left-over egg in my hash browns, but they then used that same pan to cook meat in. I had just run a marathon, was so hungry, and they serve me my vegan food that was cooked in a pan after eggs. That was just plain disrespectful. I'm never going back, that's for sure, which sucks because I've gone there for ten to twelve years... :(

Pros: Delicious vegan food

Cons: cooked in same pan as animal-products, not so clean

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Great! - Edit

We went here at 8PM on a Thursday night and were the only ones in the restaurant. We got GREAT service! Plus, once we explained that we were vegan to the waitress, she made sure that everything we ordered was vegan. We got one breakfast meal, one vegan reuben, and two (different) burgers (not the best burgers ever, but quite good and fun to try). Everything was made quickly and definitely vegan.

The style is definitely a cafe/diner with a Wizard of Oz theme throughout. We were happy with our food and service.

Pros: Kind waitstaff, Lots of vegan choices

Cons: Not 100% vegan

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The Darby's Experience - Edit

The place is nice to know of if you are in the area. I am not opposed to going again, but the waiter hardly even talked and made my partner a bit uncomfortable. In fact, I heard more talking from the cook the whole time and I never saw her. The food seems a bit greasy to be fully vegan, but I did not get sick. The place has a groovy Wizard of Oz theme going on and some little froggies, but is ultimately kind of dingy.

You are going to spend a buck here, but pretty standard rates for the area. Vegan bloody mary mix is a nice touch, and the biscuits and gravy are decent. Good flavor, but a little on the cold side.

Pros: Tasty Food, Decent Booze, Groovy atmosphere

Cons: Uninterested waiter, Pricey, Dirty/greasy/questionably vegan

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Terrible - Edit

Darby's is one of the worst eateries in Olympia. Nothing worse than having cashiers and wait staff, who look and dress like homeless bums, snub and ignore you for as long as they can. Wait, the unventilated, smoke filled dining area is worse, actually. The mediocre food, most of which you could make better for yourself at home isn't worth the money, and someone should tell the tank-top wearing hirsute waitresses that long arm pit hairs should not be considered a garnish. I wonder why the health department lets them stay open. Mostly its the terrible service and attitude of the people who work there that makes the place unbearable.

Cons: Mediocre food, terrible service, smokey dining room

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May be vegan but not healthy - Edit

We decided to try breakfast at Darby's and were a bit disappointed. The Tofu scramble with vegetables was OK but came with a pile of very greasy hash browns. The Vegan omelet was OK but again came with greasy hash browns and some kind of butter or margarine on our whole grain toast. I haven't had any kind of fat on my toast for years so it tasted weird. We watched the good looking vegan sandwiches delivered to other tables but along side a greasy pile of deep fried french fries. The help didn't seem to want to take the time to talk about what we wanted and they seemed understaffed and in a hurry. At least they are tying but this may be vegan but not a healthy place to eat.

Pros: Vegan friendly

Cons: Lots of greasy fried food, Not much coaching from the staff

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Snotty and Crowded - Edit

I had not thought about it but upon reading the last review it makes sense that it is true. Have you ever seen their kitchen? It is SUPER tiny. Smaller than kitchens in the average house. So that makes sense that they are not really vegan. Other than that I do not understand what all the fuss is about. I have been here several times and it is not that good. REALLY. I can make much better and better for me food at home. Also the servers are ALWAYS snotty and do not pay enough attention to their jobs.

Pros: Bad servers, not great food

Cons: nice atmosphere

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Not quite vegan unless you ask for it. - Edit

This place had a really fun atmosphere and was quite busy for a Sunday evening. The biscuits and gravy were pretty delicious among the other food I had. I was dissappointed that they had run out of some of the ingredients for the sandwiches I wanted to try. I will definitely go there again. My only complaint is that they go through all of the work to ensure the ingredients for their vegan dishes are in fact of vegan, but then cook them with the meat. I really wanted to try their fries, but they cook them in the same oil as the chicken and I had to ask that my black bean burger be cooked on a separate surface than the griddle that they cook everything else on. Why eat a veggie burger that's soaked in meat grease? I think they may be confused on the concept.

Pros: Great food, Excellent drink selection, Pleasant, upbeat atmosphere

Cons: Vegan food cooked with meat, Several items out of stock

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THE place for breakfast - Edit

There are lots of vegan items on the breakfast menu, and the ones I've tried have all been delicious. The vegan biscuits and gravy and soooo good, and filling, but my new favorite is the southwest frittata thing that they make with some egg-substitute they developed. I think it's really good, but my eating partner doesn't like it, so I guess you'll have to try it yourself. The coffee is always good and the meal portions are really too big to even finish. I've dinner there a few times and have enjoyed the falafel and hummus burger, though their fries are too greasy for me (I still eat them, of course!) :)

Pros: variety, atmosphere, taste

Cons: noisy, long waits sometimes

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great place - Edit

first visited darby's back in dec-07. fell in love with the mushroom and onion soup. returned to olympia for a visit in june-08 and wanted to eat at darby's but found it close my last two days there. excellent atmosphere

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Yummy - Edit

I've been to Darby's many times and I am always satisfied with what I pay for. For breakfast try their vegan biscuits and gravy with their house made vegan sausage. Their hashbrowns are amazing. For lunch I get their Black bean burger... made with their own black bean and rice patty (its so delicious and falls apart as your eat it) topped with grilled onions and red pepper. SO YUMMY! What I dislike about Darby's is that sometimes the servers are less than friendly and everything I have tried is greasy as heck. Otherwise delicious! Prices are average for restraunt style.

Pros: great food, big proportions

Cons: cold staff, greasy

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Greasy Spoon Vegetarian - Edit

Pretty good vegetarian options, although a little on the messy side. I like the Breakfast sandwich that can be made with tofu instead of egg. The homemade veggie burger is better than your average one, also. The hash browns are tasty but greasy.

Pros: laid back atmosphere, summer outside seating, lots of veggie options

Cons: sometimes slow service, not always super clean

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