Reviews


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Candle 79 is one of my favorite restaurants for gluten-free vegetarian meals in New York City. I’ve first visited this restaurant in 2006 and immediately loved it, but selling it to my husband was easier than I thought. He too loves eating at Candle 79. Not too many places back then where you could have a wonderful meal that fitted both dietary needs. The Gal @ ww.TheHealthyDish.com

Image for veg*ngirl

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The Grilled Seitan Chimichurri appetizer ($10) may be the best thing I've ever eaten. I wish they would make this an entree and serve these skewers of divine-tasting delights over rice.

The Grilled Kale salad is heavenly. Almost a meal in itself.

Note that the Tomato-Zuchini Lasagna is a raw lasagna. Nothing wrong with that, just that the menu does not state it is raw. I saw 'cashew cheese' was on it and assumed it was a hot dish. Nope.

The Spaghetti and Wheat Balls are wonderful. This may be a good dish for any meat eaters in your group who need to ease in to the world of vegan cuisine.

Spend the money to eat here and enjoy.


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Candle 79 is simply the best vegan restaurant. Ofcourse all the offerings are vegan, but they are also organic and mostly local as is practical and super fresh. The service is always great, I often go with a large group of friends before a concert or show and the meals are timed so well. The wait staff are also knowledgeable about all the options on the menu (read: they can explain to your omnivore friends what's in seitan). The food is creative, fresh, and really delicious. The kale salad is a favorite as well as the Seitan picata. They have a menu that changes with the seasons, there are daily specials which I often try and have not been disappointed. There's a great selection of appetizers, my kids love their nachos, i love the seitan skewers and the nori rolls. For Dessert try the Mexican chocolate cake or mousse tower, yum! Last time I was there I was greeted so warmly by Benay Vynerib, one of their managers she makes you feel like your having dinner at a good friends house. I asked about how a dessert is made and she called the pastry chef Jorge Pineda to our table, he was just lovely, shared some vegan recipe secrets! Such a great meal with friends, thanks Candle!!!


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I had very high hopes for Candle, but was not impressed. I shelled out $100 for this meal and nothing made me go "wow!". It was all tasty, but by no means worth the price. It was fun to get all dressed up and go out, but even the ambiance wasn't that special. I definitely wouldn't go there again.


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I enjoy this restaurant very much, especially because it also serves gluten-free vegetarian options such as the bean burgers.


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I'd been hearing about the Seitan Piccata for years and it was so totally awesome! I wanted to eat it every day of our trip, but I restrained myself. Everything we ordered here was fantastic. They have great gluten-free options, too. I highly recommend this restaurant.


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We were a party of 6 with only myself being the fully vegan one--EVERYONE loved this place. it was amazing, yes, its pricey but for the atmosphere and/or special occasion its TOTALLY worth it


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For the price Candle 79 is not worth it.

The pro: The chocolate and vanilla shakes were fantastic.

The con: The meals we ordered were bad. The tofu tempura had a batter that would have been suited for a mini donut and the sweet sauce with it was not a good match. My wife dish was rather bland as well.

Image for Cass Danger

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I had dinner here a couple years ago and really enjoyed my meal. One thing I remember is that there was wine in a LOT of dishes, so watch out if you're straightedge or abstain from alcohol for another reason. The service is very friendly and the restaurant is beautiful.

I just had brunch here for the first time this past weekend and it was spectacular. I dined with a non-veg friend and she was very impressed with the food. I had the breakfast burrito, which had seitan, rice, carmelized onions, beans, and spinach, and it was really good. She had the multi-grain waffles with fresh fruit and cranberry butter and that was excellent. I liked that the whole grains made them healthier, but it wasn't the super-gritty mess you sometimes get with whole grains.

We shared the salad of the day, which was absolutely spectacular, and I'm not even a salad person. It had arugula, black rice, hearts of palm, avocado, tomatoes, radishes, and had a basil dressing. Outstanding. We also shared the apple phyllo dough tart, which was their homemade apple ice cream, topped with an apple sauce, surrounded with crispy phyllo dough and drizzled with a sweet sauce. Very good, but the dough was sort of hard to eat since so crispy.

I had the recommended green drink, but I wasn't really into it. I'm generally not into green drinks but figured it was worth a try. It's probably good if you like green drinks, but next time I'll get OJ for breakfast. My friend had fresh apple juice, which was good, but it had a hair in the glass, so they got her a new one, and comped both the drinks and our dessert, which was very thoughtful.

Image for Lola

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I have been to Candle 79 twice, and both times I found myself wishing that I had eaten somewhere else. The food wouldn't be disappointing if Candle 79 wasn't trying to be an upscale restaurant. Unfortunately, the high prices raised my expectations for what turned out to be two fairly bland meals.

On the plus side, the ambience is nice and the cocktails and fruit juices are very good. The service was pretty slow both times that I went, but the people on the waitstaff were all very friendly.

Note: My rating (3 stars) is based solely on the food itself. If I were to rate Candle 79 based on value, I would probably reduce the rating down to 2 stars.

Image for conde.kedar

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I went to Candle 79 with high expectations. Ultimately, I found most of my meal to be bland and uninspired, especially considering the price of the place. The avocado-black bean salsa appetizer was heavy and dull; the main dish, a fava bean puree with tempeh and morel mushrooms, was bland and unsubtle. Finally, the ice cream sampler, while tasty, came in a tiny portion (and cost $8). The service, while friendly, was slow and inattentive. Decor and ambience don't make up for bland food, high prices and poor service. Go to their sister joint, The Candle Cafe, instead.


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i went here for the first time on a snowy night in 2004. the atmosphere was so cozy and inviting. among top-notch gourmet vegan restaurants i have been to around the country (millennium, san Francisco; greens, san francisco; horizons, philly) candle 79 is the best one. i had the seitan piccatta, it was to die for. we had appetizers, wine, deserts and coffee and everything was fantastic. of course it is a special treat to go here (we spent $160 for 2 people), but once every few years, it is worth it. if you are going to spend a lot of money, this is the place to do it.


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I took my sister here for her birthday and although some food was tasty, she got food poisoned and ended up getting IV fluids in the ER the next day. She also missed work. They refused to refund us and said it was 'that bug going around.' Who needs seitan if it is gonna give you food poisoning?


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This place is fabulous. I had a butternut squash risotto dish with a cream sauce. My boyfriend had the pasta special of the day, which was alfredo with vegetables. We both enjoyed the food but our favorite thing here was the chocolate and peanut butter mousse cake dessert. Dining here is pricey, it ran us about $60 for lunch including a tip, but well worth it for something out of the ordinary.


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I visited Candle 79 with my family and had an absolutely delightful experience. The atmosphere was uplifting and the food was elegant. I had an incredible quinoa-crusted tempeh over maple sweet potato mash with caramelized onions, cranberry glaze, and haricots verts. My family and I shared a delicious salad. My mother had a hearty home made veggie burger and my step-father had cashew cream and vegetable ravioli. An absolutley first rate vegetarian dining experience!


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My absolute favorite vegan restaurant! So many vegan places are self-serve/cafeteria style that Candle 79 is a refreshing change. This is an upscale eatery where the waiters recite long descriptions of the daily specials. Soy candles are on the tables as well as real cloth napkins. The food is fabulous and yes, a bit pricey, but comparable to other Manhattan restaurants. If you want cheap, eat somewhere else. If you want class, go to Candle 79.


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Way over priced for food that is good, but not great. I have been to much better vegetarian restaurants and paid half as much for similar dishes. The pad Thai was basically a giant plate of coleslaw with peanut oil and it was $19. Totally outrageous. The only indulgence here is the price. If you are looking for something better and lot cheaper go to the Candle Cafe instead.


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Possibly the best western style vegetarian place in New York, the seitan and snow pea starters were to die for. A less adventurous choice for main course (pasta) was still pretty good but I kind of wish I had gone for something more unusual.
Upmarket but friendly staff. A little too expensive for regular dining but a great place for a special occasion.

Image for Dave Rolsky

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I just ate here for the first time today and it was great. I had the black bean soup, seitan piccata with creamed spinach and mashed potatos, and the mexican chocolate cake for dessert.

The soup was very tasty, but the highlights were the seitan and the cake. The seitan was lightly fried and served with a delicious lemon-caper white sauce which was rich and tasty.

The cake was fantastic, served with chocolate ganache on top and a light coconut milk broth. The cake itself was perfectly moist, and very rich, with a strong cocoa flavor and a hint of cinnamon. The ganache was also very rich, but the coconut broth was light and not too sweet, which made for a nice contrast.

The service was excellent, attentive and friendly. I also liked the decor, and even though they played some Christmas music, it was Louis Armstrong, so it was ok.

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