The Beginnings - Skolas

  • Vegetarian Vegetarian
    ( 41 reviews )
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Skolas iela 12, Riga, Latvia

Restaurant with juice bar operating since spring 2011. Menu is approximately 50% raw food and 50% cooked vegan food. Has fresh juices, smoothies, and wheatgrass shots along with desserts cakes and sweets. Honey is used at times and also for sale. This is the first of 2 outlets in the city. Previously named Raw Garden. Open Mon-Fri 8:00am-8:00pm.

Categories: Vegan-friendly, Organic, Raw, Western, Juice bar, European

41 Reviews

First Review by olgucz

Convenient restaurant - Edit

Everything is vegan except for honey at times.
The daily menu consist of two raw or two cooked dishes (soup + main) and is decent priced. Separate breakfast menu. There are burgers, smoothies and plenty of raw superfood balls available as well. There is also a section with spreads, sauces, pasta, plant milks, raw crisps and stuff.
It's a nic walk-down venue, good atmosphere, many tables. Staff friendly and with excellent English skills.
Good WiFi. Good opening times, too. Seems to be a popular venue.

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good vegan food - Edit

Good vegan food, the menu wasn't in English but the lady translated it for us, we got a chickpea burger in kale leaves and a kale and grapefruit salad, but were about 5-6€. we also got a raw snickers cake, for €3/100g. Very delicious food.

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good breakfast - Edit

Breakfast was good, I just wish the pancakes had been warm ...

Pros: good breakfast options (sweet and salty), good smoothies

Cons: cold pancakes

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Moderately good. - Edit

Their other location serves fish. Here they have gelatin capsules and honey. The food is hit-or-miss, often bland, e.g. a raw cucumber soup with maybe one other ingredient. Not really worth it for the price. Some of their desserts are quite delicious though.

Pros: Lots of vegan options, central, good, healthy dess

Cons: Expensive, food is hit-or-miss.

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*** - Edit

Went there once for lunch and had brown rice and kind of tomato sauce with scrambled tofu. The tofu was more like aside than the main thing. So not much protein in a portion.

Nice place.

Liked the chiapudding which I took as dessert.

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Top vegan food - Edit

Raw Garden is an amazing vegan restaurant. All the food is of extremely high-quality and very good. The staff is friendly, and prices are good.

Pros: Everything.

Cons: Nothing.

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Perfect ! - Edit

How to describe it .. A really nice place with good atmosphere, staff members smiling and delicious smoothies !

Pros: Books about dietetic and veganism cosy and modern

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Those beluga lentils - Edit

Can't remember how many times I visited this place but it's one of my favourites. Great selection of raw treats and the chia mango desserts were lovely when I could actually fit them in. But my favourite was the beluga lentils with mushrooms and kale and little towers of carrot puree - I could barely move afterwards! Just divine. This is the best and friendliest of the Raw Gardens. Especially Una who lights up the place, she's great!

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Healthy Vegans Dream - Edit

This is a well decorated, modern place in the heart of Riga with friendly staff, healthy meals and aside from honey in some desserts - entirely vegan.

I really enjoyed my lunch here (I had raw vegan sushi and it was by far the best sushi I've ever had). The juice was lovely too. The only downside was the desserts. I'm greedy so I ordered six desserts to share with my friend and they all tasted pretty much the same. You know that grainy, raw-vegan taste that is pretty much everywhere? Yeah, they tasted like that which is a shame because the sushi was so delicious.

For Latvian standards, this place was extremely expensive especially because the desserts were so tiny.

Overall, though, the main course was good, the staff were friendly and helpful and the whole place was clean, fresh and minimalistic. I got good vibes from Raw Garden but they need to put a new spin on their desserts because what they're doing now isn't working.

Pros: good food, Friendly staff, well decorated

Cons: can get busy, desserts were meh

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Excellent Raw Treats - Edit

We didn't buy any actual meals; just stopped in for a few treats at the counter. Very rich and well-made. I can't remember the names of the items we tried but one was a kind of chocolate fudge and another was similar to a granola bar. Watch out for honey, though!

Pros: Raw, Good quality ingredients

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No complaints! - Edit

On the whole, I´m happy with the couple of visits I have paid to this restaurant. I liked their food, and while they may not serve extremely generous portions (I'm thinking about the lasagne here), I didn't think they were scarce either. They took the time and effort to serve the cake with some sea buckthorn sauce and raspberries, that would usually not be the case at home in Stockholm.
On one occasion I got the wrong dish and was not alert enough to ask them to take it back before actually eating quite a bit of it, but it was probably just due to the language barrier. Staff were attentive, even when I arrived at the last minute to purchase some sweet things to take away.

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RIDICULOUSLY SMALL PORTIONS!!!!!!!!! - Edit

I used to visit Raw Garden each time I would go to Latvia and I used to love the place until I visited it last week and got very disappointed. The portions up to this point have been large and satisfying and, since I used to love their lasagna I ordered lasagna again. And, to my surprise they brought (literally!!!) two tiny pieces of squash and a bit or tomato. The prices have also gone up. Left the place having paid 12 euros and still hungry... Hideous. The place that used to be cute and nice turned into something... I don't even know. Guys, why are you being so cheap?? And why did you change your lasagna, which used to be so rich and creamy, round, big and tasty and with olives into something ridiculously small and not even tasty? What are the customers paying for? I don't know... Very dissatisfied.

Pros: variety of foods

Cons: very expensive, small portions, good lasagna turned into something bad

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Smart restaurant, friendly service and good value - Edit

I visited Raw Garden three times - once for dinner and twice for lunch. Staff are very friendly, and informed us that all the food on the menu was vegan, which meant we had a lot to choose from. Menus are available in English and the staff we met were all fluent English speakers.

At lunch, you can order from the menu or go for the "business lunch" which is around 4.50€ - great value for the standard of food they offer. I had a vegetable curry dish one day and a raw pizza the next, which was especially delicious. For dinner, we had a vegan cheese plate, a Thai style soup and a delicious chilli, followed by a chocolate ice dessert.

Highly recommended!

Pros: High standard vegan menu with delicious food, Excellent and friendly service, Smart surroundings

Cons: None

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great first impression, but only had a shake - Edit

I only had a shake and no food. the place was packed, seems to be the vegan / raw place to be. bright, friendly atmosphere and healthy smell of wheatgrass as you walk in. staff were friendly and spoke English well. lots of options to chose from, all menus in Latvian though although staff are happy to translate. no a la carte - instead they do a black board 'business lunch' which consists of a choice of starter and main as I understand it. my (energy) shake was fine, nothing special but a bit expensive for €4.50 I thought. overall great first impression however.

Pros: bright, happy atmosphere, busy and healthy vibe, great shake and drinks selection

Cons: bit on the pricey side (smoothies)

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healthy food - Edit

Healthy food in Riga. Not too many other vegan options in Riga. Had a good meal.

Pros: healthy & tasty 2-course meal

Cons: vegan food is rarely cheap

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Raw Vegan Cake - Edit

I got there some really delicious raw vegan cake.
Price around 5 Euro for one piece.

English speaking staff.
Cozy atmosphere.

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lovely - Edit

their smoothies are fantastic! also you can buy chia seeds and goji berries here.

Cons: sometimes it's all full

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Sehr lecker, roh und Vegan. - Edit

Es hat alles wunderbar geschmeckt. Wir hatten eine Lasagne. Gurken Spinat Suppe. Ravioli und Avocado Torte. Wir kommen wieder.
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It all tasted wonderful. We had a lasagna. Cucumber soup spinach. Ravioli and avocado pie. We'll be back.

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delicious,calm ,beautiful - Edit

Tried a raw soup,a salad and a smoothie and bought the rawvegan Bounty,the Goji and the sulerfoods Balls.all super Delicious and so cheap

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Great food - Edit

We visited Riga one week in August 2014 and we went twice to Raw Garden. Very fresh and yummy food, and an incredible juice/smoothie selection. After dinner we bought some delicious desserts. If I visit Riga again, I'll come back to this restaurant.

Pros: Fresh, Lots of juice & smoothies, Super friendly personnel

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delicious raw and non-raw ALL VEGAN food - Edit

Just finished a delicious lunch meal here. Raw soup, warm chickpea creamy main, and avocado + pineapple juice for 9.50€. Everything here is vegan and everything I had was delicious.

Pros: vegan, raw

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Nice - Edit

I was surprised to find a vegan restaurant in Riga. Had the daily menu, soup was excellent, second dish was not very tasty neither filling, but avocado cake dessert exceeded any expectation. Overall good experience but I found it a bit pricey for a country like Latvia.

Pros: Healthy, Fresh

Cons: Expensive

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Wow! - Edit

A great place located within two blocks of two different bus stops and easily walked in about 30 minutes from Old Town. Superb food, friendly staff with English, reasonable prices. If you like raw food, this is a must.

Pros: Food quality, Prices, Portion sizes

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Fresh and tasty (raw) food! - Edit

We really enjoyed the absolutely tasty and fresh food we had at the Raw Garden in Riga. The restaurant is small, but very cozy with a nice and modern interior. It is possible to buy the food take-away as well as raw crackers and other special ingredients for raw cooking at the counter. However, we preferred to take a seat and eat on the spot. Good decision! As a starter we had vegan mexican burrito wraps and a raw soup, which both was really good. As a main dish we had the raw lasagna and the chinese noodle salad pasta (I don't remember the name of the dish exactly, sorry), which also were absolutely tasty. Combined with fresh pressed juices and a raw cheese cake with red currant topping as a dessert we were so happy about this freshly made and tasty meal, that we really regret not to have the Raw Garden close to our home.
If it was, we would definitely eat there again.
Updated from previous review on Thursday July 24, 2014

Updated from previous review on Thursday July 24, 2014

Pros: excellent, fresh made food, moderate prices, raw options

Cons: no outdoor-sitting, closes early in the evening

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Huge Portions, Very Tasty - Edit

We had a very positive experience! Normally the portions in raw restaurants are very small, but here they were really big, some of us couldn't almost finish it. We had the raw lasagna, raw carrot soup and cooked zucchini spaghetti. For starters the cashew nut cheese is a must try and the raw snickers for dessert was amazing. Fast service and price was absolutely okay.

Pros: Portions, Price

Cons: Honey

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Cozy Place with Delicious Raw & Cooked Meal - Edit

For lunch you can choose a meal of one soup and one main for 6.5 EUR. They always have daily changing one raw and one cooked option for both soup and the meal. (Everything vegan) We chose one of each (two sets) and they were all very tasty but raw soup & menu was more flavorful (and not high in fat). Food are all very good, beautifully presented and place is very pretty. Lots of raw desserts offered. We tried avocado cake (2.6EUR) and it was very light, refreshing and delicious! Many books on vegan/raw food. Free wifi but didn't seem so strong.

For lunch, food came out very fast but we've heard that for dinner it takes some while to be served (menu starts at 5pm). I would love to try the raw lasagna next time!
Updated from previous review on Saturday July 19, 2014

Pros: Tasty, Fast service, Healthy

Cons: No outdoor seating, Funky wifi

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excellent - Edit

very good food, excellent prices, good variety, raw options, excellent waitstaff. very worth the 25 min walk from my hostel.

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