Zen Gardens - Cambridge

  • Vegetarian Vegetarian
    ( 12 reviews )

65 Water St N, Cambridge, Ontario, Canada, N1R 3B4

Chinese vegetarian restaurant with several locations. Features a variety of Asian vegetable dishes, mock meat dishes, sushi, dim sum, and others. Large selection of tea. View of the river. Open Mon-Thu 11:30am-9:00pm, Fri-Sat 11:30am-9:30pm.

Category: Vegan-friendly, Lacto, Ovo, Chinese, Take-out, Asian

Reviews (12)

First Review by shabnamazad

Zen Gardens in Cambridge, ON IS THE BEST - Edit

My partner and I have been going here on and off for about two years. This place is incredible compared to other vegan options in cambridge and brantford. The woman who serves/works cash is extremely friendly, personable, and attentive. Unlike the other Zen Gardens we have been to, this one has two huge open-faced freezers with vegan/vegetarian foods for sale (really great meat substitutes, the best of which is the BBQ seitan and the BBQ steam buns, and the vegan shrimp!!!), all are affordable/fairly priced.

Our favorite dishes to order here are: the sweet and sour lappa, teriyaki cutlets, crispy soy fritters, kung po soy chickn, and the bbq steam buns ! The combination platters are DELICIOUS, and great value ! The veggie broth soup is also phenomenal. We can't say enough about how great (and unique) this place is. We make the drive out there whenever we can!

Pros: unique and affordable menu items, almost completely vegan , friendly and quick service

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Great place for dinner! - Edit

Family-friendly; they spoiler our three young vegetarian sons :)

Also have gluten-free options.

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

yummy food! - Edit

Friendly service! Great food!

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

delicious Chinese food - Edit

We don't have a vegetarian Chinese restaurant near our home so drove out of our way to stop here. It was well worth it as it was wonderful to order whatever we wanted without worrying about oyster sauce or cross contamination.

Everything we ate was delicious. We ordered the assorted Seitan platter with steamed broccoli, chow mien with soy sauce, sweet and sour bites and avocado sushi. The kids loved their bubble tea.

The total for dinner and two drinks came to just over $60 for four of us with leftovers for supper.
We give it 4.5 stars

Pros: friendly service, large servings

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Great Food - Edit

I'm a vegan and I went here with my gluten free friend. We always struggle trying to find places where we can both find something enjoyable to eat. We came here and were greeted warmly. We shared small spring rolls and each had a plate of veggie fried rice. Everything was absolutely delicious and very affordable! The portions were massive as well. Our server was polite and helpful with our many questions. We will definitely return!

Pros: Affordable, Quiet

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Amazing - Edit

Definitely among if not the best veg restaurant i have ever been to so far.
Lots of options, i had the vermicelli Singapore style noodles with some dumplings and spring rolls, spot on! i even had some left over to take home, which i was looking forward to eating later. Looking forward to going back! Great service and clean.
Updated from previous review on Tuesday February 18, 2014

Pros: Clean, Service, Great Food

Cons: Far

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

My favourite vegan place in Cambridge - Edit

My whole family love the Zen. We are always greeted very warmly and have always had the best service available.
Some of my favourite dishes are: the hot and sour soup, the steamed dumplings, sushi, the lo han, the curry vermicelli and the spicy eggplant to name just a few. Our favourite tea is the fruit tea made with fresh fruit. Yummy. We have tried many dishes on the large menu and have never been disappointed :)

Pros: Service , Food, Atmosphere

Cons: None

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Worst Food - Edit

Decor was nice, and the owner (or the lady that I assumed was the owner) was very nice. But the food was literally the worst food I have ever eaten in a restaurant. I ordered a rice curry dish with soy ham in it. It came one 5 minutes after I ordered and tasted like it had been sitting out for a while. It was super dry and the soy ham that was burnt to a crisp- not to mention it didn't even have the vegetables in it that the menu listed. I also ordered spring rolls which were filled with ONLY cabbage.
The other people in the restaurant also didn't like their meals, when they told staff that they didn't like it, the cook came out of the kitchen and made them feel really awkward about saying anything.
I can only assume that the other reviews on this site were written by people that work there or their families because there is no way in hell anyone can like this food.
I really an not a picky eater, but I could NOT eat the food at this place.
If you have a choice, I would suggest avoiding this restaurant.

Pros: Decoration

Cons: Food

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

IMO - Edit

This place is really good. Maybe not so good as there counterpart in Toronto, King's Cafe, and a little more expensive, but a really great place to eat delicious vegetarian food!

Pros: friendly staff, vegetarian

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Our favourite restaurant! - Edit

We originally visited the Waterloo branch quite often, as we live in Waterloo, but when they unfortunately closed down, we tried the Cambridge location, and we love it even more.

The food is delicious and incredibly varied. Some of our favourites are the Kung Pao Soy Chicken, the Sushi Platter (better sushi than sushi restaurants!), Sweet and Sour Bites, and the Wonton Soup. All of the appetizers are very good also. To be honest, we've been there dozens of times, and we've never tried something we didn't love. Keep in mind, portion sizes are incredibly generous - so a little goes a long way! We tend to always over order, and end up going home with leftovers. They also have an *amazing* selection of teas, all delicious. If you can, try a new one every time.

As far as the food, another point to mention is that any omnivores that have tried the food are also always impressed - this isn't some boring veg restaurant with 10 different kinds of salad! There's something for everyone, and everyone has a favourite here.

The service is always 120%. As they now know us to be vegan, they're always on top of our ordering choices, and ready to advise what items are or are not vegan. They are always happy to advise any customers, if you inform upon ordering. We're always greeted warmly, and tended to appropriately (always enough visits to the table - never too many). The servers are polite, fast and have never in our dozens of visits made any type of mistake.

The atmosphere is warm, and relaxing. There's a good deal of space, so that you don't feel too crowded next to fellow diners, including comfy booth seating.

Overall, I can simply say that we love love love this place, and will continue frequenting it for many years to come. I recommend stopping by whenever you can, and bring your meat-eating friends and family - they'll love it too.

Thank you Zen Gardens for years of great dining!!

Pros: Great service, Yummy food, Relaxing atmosphere

Cons: None

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

lovely atmosphere, food and service! - Edit

i live super close to the zen gardens in my town and one night when my dad stepped out for a business call before preparing supper, i decided i'd take ten dollars and see what i could pick up from zen gardens and bring back home. i was worried i wouldn't have enough money for anything but a couple spring rolls or something, but i looked at the menu and decided i've have just enough to order two appetizers. i ordered the barbeque bun (2 pieces) for $4.50 and soy nuggets (4 pieces) for also about $4.50. my total came to just under 10 dollars and i was very impressed with the portion sizes, particularly the barbeque buns.
the barbeque buns were very plump and very generous in size. http://tinypic.com/r/2z672c8/3
they had a pretend barbeque pork filling surrounded by the sweet and fluffy steamed bun. http://tinypic.com/r/2920ls2/3
the soy protein pork tasted very real and was quite delicious! i was almost full by the time i finished the first bun but very happy i still had one left.
i'd give the barbeque buns a 5/5 for their great, light texture, hearty filling that is quite filling, portion size and price.
the soy nuggets were one of the best soy chicken nuggets i have ever tried and being a teen who had difficulty transitioning into a vegetarian, i've tried quite the number of different soy nuggets.
these ones were shaped and sized like regular nuggets, they actually reminded me a lot of mcdonalds nuggets in terms of their shape and size.
the veggie ones were very crispy and the soy inside resembled very tender shredded chicken, they were delicious.
they came with a little container of a tangy and spicy sweet & sour sauce which was the perfect accompaniment.
i would give these a 4/5, they were delicious and filling, but i think it was a wee bit overprice for only 4 fairly small nuggets. i think next time i'll try the soy drumsticks that were priced at $4.99 as i reckon they'll be bigger and more worth the price.
i've also tried the soy beef with rice noodles and the veggie fried rice which were both around $8.00. they were both exceptional dishes and very generously proportioned.
as far as the service, it was fantastic. i was warmly greeted from the moment i stepped inside the small calming restaurant and treated with the same kindness as i walked back out the doors again. i was always encouraged to sit down and relax.

Pros: excellent food, excellent service, excellent atmosphere

Cons: some items are over-priced

1 Response

shabnamazad 22 Feb 2013 - i didn't have any character space left in my review to finish it off, so here's the last little bit..

as i walked up toward the counter to order, the waitress rushed over to me and told me to please have a seat as she took my order, she was very kind. i waited around 10 minutes for my food and i was brought two glasses of water with lime during my wait.
i'd highly recommend zen gardens to anyone who is thinking about going there, or even to any one who wants to try something different and meat-free. they have lots of variety, even something to satisfy the palettes of even the most stubborn carnivores.  

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Reviewer Avatar

Service second to none - Edit

Fabulous food, fabulous service! We often frequent the Zen Garden in Waterloo, and our visit to Cambridge was not a disapointment. An almost entirely vegan menu the only thing you need to worry about is which delicious entree to choose. Beatifully decorated, you dine in a calm, and peacefull setting. And the best part of the experience is the wonderfull staff. I don't think I've ever had the pleasure of being attended by a more happy and friendly person. Do yourself a favour and give Zen Garden a try.

By submitting this post you agree to HappyCow Terms

Link to this page from your site. .
Return to Cambridge Vegetarian Restaurants & Health Food Store Listings
Business Owners, if you see an unfair review, read this.
Why was my review removed? - details
Reviews are not endorsed by HappyCow - review terms
Has Zen Gardens - Cambridge closed, shut down, moved, or changed? Please use the Update Form.
This page has been viewed 3415 times.