Rise Above Restaurant and Bakery

  • Vegan Vegan
    ( 51 reviews )
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289-362-2636
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120 St. Paul St, St Catharines, Ontario, Canada, L2R 3M2

Vegan restaurant and bakery providing vegan comfort food and baked goods, with gluten-free options. Serves lunch until 3pm, dinner, and Sunday brunch. Open Tue-Sat 11:00am-10:00pm, Sun 11:00am-3:00pm. Has an afternoon break - please confirm times.

Categories: Vegan, American, Western, Bakery, Catering, Canadian

51 Reviews

First Review by veganstastebetter

outstanding vegan gem - Edit

We have now dined at this place dozens of times and they are consistently amazing. I love that the menu is constantly changing with the seasons.

They are located in downtown St. Catharines which is about a 20 minute drive from Niagara Falls. The place is very inviting with high ceilings with a cool brick wall. A reservation is recommended as they are usually full. The servers have always been friendly and informative.

The prices are amazing considering the quality and the location. When I go out I like something special that would be very difficult to make at home and this place delivers.

Last night I had the Crispy Squash Tacos:
Coconut crusted butternut squash, shredded kale and brussels sprouts, smoky onions and chili aioli, in soft corn tortillas, with pico de gallo, refried beans and rice.
They were $15 and delicious.

My daughter had the $13 dumpling noodle bowl: Seitan and shittake dumplings, sauteed carrots, broccoli, cabbage and bean sprouts tossed with rice noodles in a warm umami broth. The dumplings were outstanding and the serving size was huge.

My husband loved his comfort bowl that consisted of mashed potatoes with corn, garlic sautéed kale, and crispy seitan, covered with mushroom gravy.

My son enjoyed his penne noodles tossed with peppers and onions in a fresh spinach basil pesto, served on a bed of cashew cream, and topped with housemade italian sausage. He said the sausage was one of the best things he’s even eaten and he loved the texture.

Last night we were too full for dessert but when we have tried them they were incredible.

My family and I highly recommend this restaurant.

Pros: desserts wow, delicious , vegan

Cons: none

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Super vegan restaurant! - Edit

Rise above offers a wide range of dishes such as burgers, seitan with various sauces, breakfasts (English of French), ice creams, pies, pasta, tacos... Their food is very tasty (I went their twice and I took a burger, a mac & cheese, the seitan with BBQ sauce, a chocolate ice cream, a mushroom soup and the French breakfast) and I didn't regret my choices. The place is pleasant, the staff is friendly and you are served relatively quickly. The size of the dishes is usually quite big. A must-go if you are visiting Niagara Falls (even if it is not near the Falls, you will need a car). Very convenient, you can eat until late in the afternoon.

Pros: many choices, tasty food, friendly staff, wide opening hours

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Amazing! - Edit

Had delicious brunch here on a Sunday. Grateful we could get a table despite not having a reservation. My omni dad loved the avocado benedict and I had nostalgic French toast. Everything was delicious and the staff was (mostly) friendly.

Pros: food, decor, friendly servers

Cons: hostess could be nicer

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good food, long wait times - Edit

The food at Rise Above is good most of the time, however you will have to wait a very long time to get a table and then there will be another long wait before the food arrives. Even for takeout it takes a very long time. And unfortunately because they are currently the only fully vegan restaurant in town, they don’t seem too concerned about this because they think people will come back anyways. Unfortunately, we won’t. We used to go fairly often but are now at the point where we are unlikely to return. There are lots of other great restaurants in town with vegan options and better service. Beechwood Doughnuts recently made changes to their store to better serve their customers, for Rise Above similar changes are way overdue. If you plan on going, bring your patience.

Pros: fully vegan, food is usually pretty good, prices are fairly affordable

Cons: long wait times, bakery items were better with previous bakers, made mistakes with our food before with no apology

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great food - Edit

We stopped in for an early dinner, it was great food. It was such a pleasure to have an entire menu of delicious sounding vegan dishes to choose from. We will definitely go back next time we are in the area.

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Absolutely Delicious! - Edit

The dishes at Rise Above are beautifully presented. The Saucy Seitan appetizer is probably the best version of Seitan I have ever had (worth the trip to Canada if you live near the border), it came with a side Lemon garlic dipping sauce. I also had the coconut avocado tacos and falafel bowl. Both these dishes were remarkable. I also recommend tacos since they have a gentle sweet touch of mango in them. The staff were all super friendly and approachable. I can't wait to come back here again!

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Great food and excellent service! - Edit

100% vegan restaurant! Need to reserve beforehand as it's a small location and fills up quickly. Staff was super friendly and the food was delicious. Would definitely recommend!

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YAAAS~! - Edit

Amazing food . Always. Regardless of what I have ordered there I have LOVED it!!! I will say, their wraps are my FAVE! This was one of the restaurants I absolutely loved even before going vegetarian - so so good.

Pros: Great atmosphere, Delicious food, The cutest S&P shakers, ever

Cons: Sometimes there is a wait

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Unhygienic and Disgusting Cooks - Edit

Right of the bat this place loses 2 stars for what I witnessed in their kitchen. NONE of the cooks were wearing gloves. ALL of the cooks were sweating and wiping sweat with their forearms, handling food with their bare hands, and dirty looking. My boyfriend even saw one of the cooks massaging kale with his bare hands. We watched this at the checkout counter in shock.

We had driven several hours for our trip to Canada and we were very hungry, so we decided to stay and get only cooked foods hoping that the cooks wouldn't have touched anything cooked. We had the seitan bites which were amazing and tofu scramble which was ok.

I hope the owner will start providing gloves to his staff and enforcing clean food handling practices. Sadly I cannot recommend eating at Rise Above until/unless the cooks start respecting the food that goes into people's bodies.

Pros: Good food, Friendly waitress, Decent prices

Cons: Disgusting and unhygienic cooks

1 Response
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begoodjen 07 Jul 2017 - LOL if you think all restaurants have cooks in the back with gloves on I don't know what to tell you. Who cares as long as they wash their hands.  


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Vegan

  Contributions +20

So thankful to have this place in my area :) - Edit

I love coming to this restaurant. It's cute , clean , amazing !! They change their menu up every season . They are always busy so I would definitely recommend reservations both for lunch and dinner .

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AMAZING - Edit

I have been to rise above several times now, and all of my visits have been wonderful. Great food, great atmosphere and great service. Everyone is very friendly and inviting. The food is absolutely amazing and everything (that I had had at least) tastes delicious! Love it and would recommend to friends/family!

Pros: Great food, Very friendly

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Opened my eyes to how good vegan can be! - Edit

This is about the only truly vegan restaurant in Niagara, so it's a good thing it's awesome.

My wife and I love the penne so much that it's tough to order anything else, but the flatbreads are terrific, and the Buffalo "wings" are good for a treat.

We often get takeout, but there is full table service available as well.

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VERY yummy food. - Edit

My partner and I decided to stop in St. Catharine's to get doughnuts at Beechwood Doughnuts and dinner at Rise Above. I'm SO happy we did!

Rise Above has a nice warm atmosphere with lots of books at the front (a "free library" sort of system where you can take and leave books), including many important animal rights books. There were also beautiful animal prints made by a local artist hanging on the walls.

We decided to share a small soup as an appetizer (curry split pea), I got the seitan souvlaki bowl (with creamy tzatziki sauce), and my partner got the smoked beet reuben with potato wedges on the side. We also got a peanut butter blondie to go. Everything was very delicious!

Our waitress was very friendly too, and I liked that they print "Thank you for eating vegan today!" on the receipts :)

Pros: delicious food, entirely vegan, supports local artists

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Sunday Brunch time ends EARLY! - Edit

Sunday brunch; arrive very early. We arrived 25 minutes before closing time, but we were turned away....not early enough! Even when I expressed our disappointment because we drove a very long way to experience their restaurant......no, sorry.
Maybe the hours should be adjusted to include the staff clean up & lock up time.
If you advertise brunch until 3:00, how can you turn customers away at 2:35?
I wonder if they turn customers away 25 minutes before closing time on other days, or just Sunday afternoon? Very sad.

Pros: 100 % vegan

Cons: poor customer service

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Perfect! - Edit

This was the first vegan restaurant myself and my boyfriend have been to and it was fantastic! Our waiter was super nice and friendly, the decor was very cute, the music was nice, overall a very casual atmosphere. The menu is all vegan and there are so many choices I had a hard time choosing! I got the Buffalo cauliflower tacos with the soup of the day and it was so great! I couldn't believe how good it tasted. I wish I had room for dessert. We had the cutest salt and pepper shakers on our table and there was a cute bookshelf in the corner. Once we left I knew that we would be back and I absolutely can't wait to come back to try more. Definitely would recommend.

Updated from previous review on 2016-08-26

Pros: Supports local artists, Reasonable Prices, Fair trade pop

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The best. - Edit

My wife seduced me with a baked good from Rise Above years ago, and it has been our go to restaurant ever since.

Whether you're having brunch, dinner, or coffee/dessert this is the best spot in the Niagara Region.

Super warm and friendly staff; I've never been disappointed with a meal at Rise Above.

Their Vegan Cheesecake is top notch...

Pros: Delicious food (all vegan), Nice ambience (staff, music,featured art), Good selection (soups, sandwiches, entrees, ect.)

Cons: Can be busy, reservations are a good idea, Parking can be crummy

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The BEST - Edit

Where do I even start with Rise Above... I think Rise Above was my first taste of vegan cuisine before I was even vegan. It totally changed my definition of what I thought vegan food could be. This restaurant has been my go-to place to eat for the past couple of years. The owner and staff have never been anything less of exceptionally kind and generous. I'm so thankful that Rise Above is located in my area. The food is wonderful, even my non-vegan family loves it. It can be quite busy at times, especially on weekends, so it could be beneficial to place a reservation. (But that just means more people are eating delicious vegan food so I'm all for it! Lol) The atmosphere is very laid-back and the staff is amazing... as I've mentioned before. I'd recommend this restaurant to anyone visiting the city.
Overall, Rise Above has to be my favourite restaurant of all time.

Pros: Delicious food, Amazing staff, Wonderful atmosphere

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Merveilleux ! - Edit

Un joyau de cuisine végétalienne. Personnel gentil et atmosphère très agréable. Nous avons adoré les champignons farcis, le burger aux betteraves et le gâteau aux carottes. Notre palais a été émerveillé!

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What a wonderful treat to find this place! - Edit

My husband and I were visiting Niagara Falls and were hoping to find a restaurant nearby that served healthy vegan food. Thanks to HappyCow we found the one and only vegan restaurant within a 20 minute drive and how glad were we to find it! The menu had so many options that even though a few were sold out for the evening, we still had plenty of options to pick from. In fact, we ordered two wraps and two desserts to go so we would have more deliciousness for the lunch the next day. Portions and prices were perfect and as so many other reviewers said, the desserts were awesome. We had fantastic service. Even though we arrived late, we were assured that we did not need to rush through our meal and to relax and enjoy.

I only wish we lived closer so we could enjoy this restaurant again and again. Great job Rise Above gang! Keep up the great work!

Pros: Lots of menu options, Portion sizes and prices, Out of this world desserts

Cons: Few options not available late in evening (as one

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excellent food - Edit

Excellent food!

Pros: Lots of choices on the menu, great service.

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I really want to love you... - Edit

Rise Above is a fully vegan restaurant in St Catharines something that excited me to no end when I first moved. It's a beautiful restaurant with great ambiance and a fun, friendly staff but sadly the food is just ok.

To give a few examples, the vegan Caesar is really nothing more than a vegan-mayo based dressing (vs some of the more creative and tasty nut based you can make) and quite plain. The curry bowl again is ok but nothing that couldn't be whipped up at home in 30 minutes and overall the portions (especially for takeout) are very small which isn't great for convincing my 200lb athlete fiancé that we should eat there.

They have some great seasonal dishes such as the tourtière that was a beautiful plate, and a seasonal summer bowl from last year but these get rotated off the menu leaving the options from the not that exciting regular menu.

Desserts and coffee on the other hand are excellent (as well as the wine prices/selection from a local organic winery).

This is a good spot if you don't feel like cooking or feel like enjoying a good atmosphere but it isn't going to change your life.

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You're great! Don't spoil it! - Edit

Great restaurant with amazing food and very cool owners and workers. But while it's getting more popular and prestigious, it's upping the prices and shrinking portion sizes, becoming less affordable and accessible. There are still a few really filling items (especially the wraps) but some entrées are really small and you don't figure it out until it comes to the table. For instance, you can order pasta for $14+tax which turns out being a small hillock in the middle of the plate. Reminds me of snobby, bourgeois restaurants. Because of the increasing demand and their limited space, they can afford to do this, but it will only lead them become an exclusive place, which I personally know they wouldn't be happy about themselves... They donate to the local Food Not Bombs chapter, which is super cool. And please cut the potato wedges thinner. When it's too thick, the middle doesn't cook :/

Pros: Delicious food, Supports local artists, Politically progressive, Safe(r) space, Donates to Food Not Bombs

Cons: Increasing prices, Shrinking portion sizes

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Great food! - Edit

Had a sweet potato burger. Was really delicious. Will come back again.

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Comfy with an Assorted Menu - Edit

Great atmosphere. There was a couch and shelf full of neat books, I thought that was pretty hip. Food was fresh. I got a seitan souflaki salad dish. I loved the watermelon pieces, the flavours complimented so well. The waiter was adorable and answered all our questions. The cheesecake was moussey and tangy. I was there with my non-veg bro and he enjoyed it as well. My only criticism is that the two-person tables were a little small. People were dropping their cutlery and phones!

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AMAZING FOOD! - Edit

I absolutely love it here! I have been on many occasions and I have never been disappointed. As of this year I cut soy out of my diet and they have still managed to cater to me. I definitely recommend trying to buffalo seitan!

Pros: Excellent food, nice atmosphere, friendly staff

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Great food - Edit

Went there while visiting the Niagara Falls area. The food was great, very flavorful. The fried mozza sticks were amazing. If I lived in the area I would definitely be a regular at this restaurant.

Pros: excellent food, friendly staff, good location

Cons: small, not many tables

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Super amazing - Edit

Delicious delicious delicious.

The service is friendly, I had to flip a coin to finally choose something on the menu, and the desserts were great, as well.

I really wish I could go here again. You should go!

Pros: All vegan, Friendly

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