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The Wooden Monkey - Halifax

  • Veg-friendly Veg-friendly
    ( 26 reviews )
Contact 902-444-3844

1707 Grafton Street, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada, NS B3J 3N8

Serves meat, vegan options available. Offers a selection of vegan choices, marked as such on the menu, which includes kale salad, seitan donair, nachos, vegetable stir fry, and a chocolate tofu pie. Uses mostly organic, local produce. Open Mon-Thu 11:30am-9:00pm, Fri-Sat 11:30am-10:00pm, Sun 11:30am-9:00pm.

Category: Vegan-friendly, Organic, Western, Beer/Wine, Canadian, Non-veg

Reviews (26)

First Review by KelseyApple

great for eating with omnivores! - Edit

Great vegan options. One of the few places in Halifax that also has seafood options for friends that still eat fish. Highly recommend the vegan Philly cheese! Chocolate pie was very rich and delicious. Great service too!

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great food - Edit

love the food. and as it is one of the only vegan places in dartmouth I end up there once every few months, would be more often if it weren't for the priceyness. the owner is a proud activist for organics and local products so I always do love to support her.

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Decent Choice - Edit

This is a decent restaurant with options to meet pretty much any dietary need. We had a good lunch, though the service was a bit slow despite the restaurant being almost empty (we came on the late side). They offer a seitan sandwich, truly excellent raw tacos (don't miss them!) and a vegan chocolate pie.

Pros: location, raw tacos

Cons: slow service

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For almost all occasions - Edit

Being more a pub than a restaurant as far as I am concerned, The Wooden Monkey is a well-patronized venue providing a varied menu. In being aware of environmental issues, using local produce where possible and creating a fireplace-room-like atmosphere, they seem to be a vivid hub for the Halifax community.
The waiter was very attentive and knowledgeable, I felt very well advised. I had a vegan pizza which took some time to be ready, but I had been forewarned.
Their range of beers was quite amazing, really great! The pizza turned out fine, however, for some reason the dough was almost as hard as stone. It wasn't easy to cut even with a pizza knife.
All in all I enjoyed my visit there. Would definitely go again since there where several other dishes (and beers) on the menu which I would love to try.
Can easily be crowded, so call in advance to reserve a table if you want to be sure to get one without having to wait.

Pros: plenty of (clearly marked) vegan options, very knowledgeable staff, great vibes

Cons: pizza dough hard as stone, crowded, rather expensive

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Great place to eat - Edit

I enjoy eating at this restaurant because they are many vegan options, but I can also eat with my non-vegan friends and everyone is happy. Nice selection and understanding staff.

They fully support the idea of organic and local sustainability. Businesses like this are doing a great job in the face of all the corporate chains out there.

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No complaints - Edit

I've been going to The Wooden Monkey on and off since about 2006. Although I have heard some negative things about the restaurant, I have not had any negative experiences so far.

There are many options that are vegan or can be made vegan. There are gluten-free options as well, including a vegan gluten-free pizza crust.

Before going gluten-free, I loved their seitan donair. It satisfied my cravings for donair sauce. Since going gluten-free, I prefer their dinner menu because there are a few more options that are vegan as well. Last time I went for dinner, I had the curry. The portion was big and it was delicious. I also recommend the salads and the chocolate tofu pie.

Service can be a little slow but they warn you of that ahead of time. Staff seem to be very knowledgable about dietary requirements and allergies.

I've taken friends and family of mine, who eat meat, and they enjoy The Wooden Monkey as much as I do.

Pros: many vegan options, delicious food

Cons: expensive

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Always good - Edit

Whenever I have been in Halifax I have usually eaten here. Over the years the location of the restaurant has changed and the menu has evolved but the food has remained consistently good. It is not always easy to find a vegan meal when I travel but this place has been a constant. This time around, I had the veggie curry and it was excellent with just the right amount of spice.

Pros: Always some vegan choice, Pleasant atmosphere, Central location

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Vegan Food Yums! - Edit

The Wooden Monkey may not be a fully vegan restaurant but they offer a large assortment of vegan options. The restaurant itself is absolutely adorable. I love the old architecture and warm decor. The seitan donair is a new favourite of mine. It's absolutely amazing and the first time I can say I really liked seitan. The servers were very friendly and accommodating.

Pros: Great vegan options, Delicious, Fast

Cons: Expensive

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Favorite place when in Halifax - Edit

oh man, I can't even tell you the things i love on the menu, as i love it all, but the seitan sandwich and lentil burger are among my top 10 for sure. This place really caters to everyone in your group (especially us who always substitute something) very friendly staff, and just amazing!!! LOVE IT HERE, go every time Im back in Halifax.

Pros: Amazing fresh food, friendly staff, cater to everyone

Cons: lineups when busy

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Great Surprise - - Edit

This restaurant was a beautiful treat. The staff are super friendly and helpful. The decor was original yet comfortable and the food...just sublime.
Most menu items can be veganized, all you have to do is ask! And there are great options for your non-vegan friends! I really can't say enough great things about this place. And the absolute best part was the tofu chocolate pie! Heaven on a plate! The prices are reasonable and it's located in the downtown area so great as a starting point for an evening around town.

Pros: Friendly Staff, Good prices, Fantastic Food

Cons: Parking is tricky

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Wooden Monkey offered welcome veg options - Edit

My family ate here twice during a four day vacation stay in Halifax. I had planned to eat here more often, but after two trips we exhausted most of the veg options on the menu. During our visits we sampled the roasted chickpea salad, blackened tofu, seitan pita, children's spaghetti and children's pizza, chocolate tofu pie, blueberry pie and a couple of other things I am forgetting. The salads were quite nice and all the vegetables fresh. My husband requested the soy cheese on the seitan pita and he enjoyed it. I found the blackened tofu to be bitter and was a bit disappointed. The chocolate tofu pie was good and the blueberry pie could have been better. The menu also offered the possibility of soy creme brulee, which sounded intriguing, but both times the flavors of the day didn't sound that appealing.

We did not try the soy cheese pizza, but that no doubt a welcome option for vegans. My children hated the tomato sauce that came with their pasta, which was quite annoying because they could have eaten plain spaghetti with margarine anywhere. Even though there was a separate children's menu, it was a generic menu that didn't offer more to vegetarian children than most restaurants.

The food was good, but as other reviewers have noted, it was nothing to write home about. It seems to have a loyal fan base because it was quite busy both times we were there, but most people seemed to be ordering fish dishes. It is a bright and airy restaurant, but also a bit loud, and the prices are definitely upscale. If I were to find myself in Halifax again, I would return, but I wouldn't trip over myself racing to go back.

Pros: veg options, quality produce, friendly staff

Cons: could use more veg options, loud, pricey

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Amazing Place - Edit

We're in Halifax for a few days and I'd heard all about the Wooden Monkey. It was even better than I'd expected! I had a delicious vegan pizza and a soy brulée for dessert. It is so great to find a place that is so willing to provide vegan options. It is a cozy, funky place -- comfortable, not at all pretentious.

Pros: Great food, Great atmosphere, Friendly Staff

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Visited While on Vacation - Edit

We were visiting Nova Scotia and asked our B&B hostess to suggest a nice vegetarian restaurant in Halifax. Without hesitation, she recommended The Wooden Monkey. We should mention that my wife is strictly vegan while I still have a broader diet. What impressed me with The Wooden Monkey is that the dishes we enjoyed were genuinely tasty in their own right - no need to hesitate because they were vegetarian. In particular, the nachos appetizer was a delight and the scallops with pasta was delicious. But what put The Wooden Monkey over the top was their Vegan Tofu Pie. Having savoured that dish, I'll never yearn for traditional cheesecake again. Their attitude is so helpful and friendly and the service was fine - although they seemed a bit stretched once the place filled up. The fact that they are not set up to take reservations was a little unsettling, especially since we needed to make a one-hour drive into Halifax. But we arrived just before the busy time and were seated at a pleasant window table. Without hesitation, we would repeat.

Pros: Creative Dishes, Many Choices, Helpful & Caring Waitstaff

Cons: No Reservations

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Sadly ...the veg meals were bad. - Edit

I am not impressed with the Wooden Monkey in terms of vegetarian/vegan dishes. I have eaten at the restaurant twice (I went a second time hoping my first bad experience was a fluke).

The first time I split the vegan nachos and had the lentil burger. The nachos were nothing to rave about. The vegan cheese was ok, but too expensive (we had to pay way more to get it). For a restaurant that claims to be so accommodating to vegans, they sure don't make veganizing meals easy or affordable! The lentil burger was pretty tasteless (I could only taste the bread surrounding it) and the accompanying potatoes were just okay.

The second time I had the rice bowl and the chocolate tofu pie. The rice bowl was terrible. What a weird combination: seaweed, almonds, and cucumbers topping rice. The worst part was that it included tofu... plain tofu. Not cooked, not seasoned! Everyone knows that plain tofu is gross! The dessert, however, was phenomenal. So rice and smooth, with a unique nut-based crust; I was in chocolate heaven.

I like everything about the Wooden Monkey (the owner is cool, their mission is great, the staff are so nice, the furniture is re-used, they use local) ...BUT I hate their vegan/vegetarian dishes. I think they need a veg chef to join their staff in order to improve in the veg department.

Pros: Local products used, Cozy, "recycled" atmosphere, Non-veg options

Cons: Expensive, Won't take reservations, Small serving sizes for the steep prices

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Definitely a favorite! - Edit

As someone who cannot eat gluten or lactose, & doesn't eat meat, the wooden monkey is one of my absolute favorite restaurants. I've never had a bad experience. The menu is varied which makes it easy to bring omni-friends and family to enjoy. & even more important, the staff is very well informed of menu options & always helpful. The vegan nachoes are definitely my favorite choice whenever I go--the plate is always overflowing and very filling. They even fooled my meat & potatoes loving father when I brought him! While some of the food items are slightly pricey, the quality of the food, atmosphere & friendly staff make for an amazing dining experience! Definitely recommended.

Pros: Amazing Food., Well trained & friendly staff.

Cons: Slightly pricey, Long wait for tables occasionally.

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Meh - Edit

I had the seitan sandwich with vegan soy cheese as did so many of the reviewers. Meh. The seitan was bland, the sandwich was small, and it fell apart quickly. My lady friend had a pasta dish that was very unmemorable.

At least the staff were very aware of veganism and what ingredients were in each dish. Rare for an omni restaurant on the east coast.

The decor rocks.

Wouldn't go back even if I lived there.

Pros: great location and interior, knowledgeable about ingredients

Cons: bland, expensive

1 Response

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LoveFood 09 May 2010 - I found this restaurant expensive as well. And my sandwich fell apart, too.

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Decent food yet a bit pricey - Edit

The Wooden Monkey recently moved from Argyle to Grafton Street and the new location is quite nice. For lunch two of us shared a seitan sandwich served with fries ($13) and a chickpea and nori salad ($11). There wasn't too much of the thinly shaven seitan in the sandwich. Since we are vegan we ordered the sandwich without cheese and it was a little bit bland. The salad was tasty albeit small. The ambiance in the restaurant is quite friendly and the service was attentive. The restaurant was quite busy during lunch hour. In terms of value I found the portions small for the price but this is a decent choice and quite a popular restaurant in Halifax.

Pros: Decor/Ambiance, Service

Cons: Expensive, Portions

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Just okay - Edit

We headed here straight from the airport to enjoy lunch. The sandwiches (lentil burger and seitan sandwich) were on the bland side. Drinks (a lemonade and a beer), two sandwiches and a hummus platter appetizer became an expensive lunch. This place will hit the spot when you need to feed, but overall, there are other options in this beautiful city.

Pros: atmosphere, friendly, helpful service

Cons: bland, expensive

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Fabulous, Darling - Edit

Excellent. The staff was friendly and helpful, and the food was fantastic. The first night I shared a wonderful vegan soy cheese pizza and a chocolate tofu pie, which were both just stunning. The next day for lunch we split the soy cheese nacho appetizers which were also fantastic, and I also had a very nice seitian sandwich. Very nice atmosphere, and nice selection of drinks (including gluten-free).

Pros: Food, Staff, Atmosphere

Cons: A Little Slow at Times

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The Wooden Monkey - Edit

I was recently in Halifax and went for lunch at the Wooden Monkey. My only complaint is that they have labeled a LOT of things "vegan" that contain dairy. This irks me as then people will think that vegans must eat cheese. Anyhoo, I had the seitan sandwich, veganized. I got vegan cheese instead of the normal cheddar, and dijon instead of mayo. It was really, really good! If I'm ever back in Halifax I would definitely go back.

Pros: local food, lots of veg*n options, great location

Cons: label non-vegan items as vegan

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loooooooooove this place - Edit

love everything about this place... they buy local, make amazing healthy food, lots of options for people with food intolerance (celiac, dairy...) and the servers are great..love the atmosphere as well.. and everything i have ordered there has always been so good.. yUmMm

Pros: atmosphere, servers, FOOD

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Highly recommended - Edit

I have to start with dessert, try the chocolate tofu pie it is the BEST vegan dessert in Nova Scotia. The staff are incredibly friendly and very knowledgeable about the food. There is something for everyone, carnivore, vegetarian and vegan. Many of the items on the menu can be veganized.

Pros: Delicious pie, Amazing Staff, Warm atmosphere

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not impressed - Edit

The decor (wood brought down in hurricane Juan makes up the entire interior of this restaurant) is about the only thing of interest here. The portions, especially desserts, were tiny and the price was steep. My seitan sandwich was alright but nothing special and for the price, I would prefer to have gone to Heartwood where I would have gotten a full plate of tasty food for around the same.

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