3.0 / 4 votes

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Organic cafe with many vegan options

Restaurant, Coffee/Tea/Juice

This small cafe focuses on local, sustainable ingredients and has a number of vegan-friendly dishes (some of which are marked), including a tofu verde wrap, eggplant tiger bowl, quinoa salad, tofu lentil loaf and vegan sticky buns for dessert.

Added by conde.kedar on Feb 5 09 (last updated Jul 7 13)

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Calafia is an organic restaurant/cafe started by the former head chef at Google. As such, the menu here has an earthy and healthy touch to it, with a dash of sophistication. It also has a full vegetarian menu (of which about 50% is vegan and labeled as such).

I came with a mixed group of colleagues and, while the restaurant pleased most people, the vegetarians and vegans were largely unimpressed.

For an appetizer I had the tofu lettuce cup ($10) which was dry and bland. The tofu needed to be cooked more, and diced up with a better variety of vegetables.

For my main course I had a yellow curry noodle with tofu ($12) that promised to be spicy, but wasn't at all. It, too, was dry and just didn't hit the right savory notes. Had this dish been sauteed with onions it might have been slicker and more satisfying; even the addition of fresh diced tomatoes would have enhanced this dish significantly.

Normally I would give a place with this food quality two stars, but I'm upping it to three only because Palo Alto (especially the Town and Country Mall, where Calafia is located) doesn't have enough vegan options, and Calafia does provide a fair amount. It also has nice ambiance and service, as well as one vegan baked good.

I'm willing to give Calafia another shot, maybe for brunch next time, but the food here left me wanting more.

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I think that Calafia Cafe has changed a little since this entry was added. First off, the vegan items weren't marked on the menu (but could be pretty easily figured out, with some help from our server). Secondly, there were no vegan sticky buns for dessert. In fact, there weren't any vegan desserts as far as I could tell.

Aside from those minor disappointments, I had a pretty good meal. I ordered the tofu lentil loaf, which came with two delicious sides: herb mashed potatoes and spicy green beans. The lentil loaf was very savory and moist. My only complaint is that the serving was way too large for me to finish it. I wish that they sold half portions at a lower price (at $14, the lentil loaf is one of the most expensive items on the menu).

My friend ordered the vegan pizza, which was covered with mashed lemony garbanzo beans instead of cheese. I thought the concept was a bit strange, but he seemed to really like it. We split the vegetable spring rolls for our appetizer, which were filled with fragrant Thai basil (among other things). Overall, it was a solid meal in a nice setting with extremely attentive waiters. If there had been a vegan dessert on the menu, I would have given Calafia Cafe a rating of "great."

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Non-Smoking

Prices

$$ - average

Payment

  • MasterCard Visa

Cuisines

  • American
  • Eclectic (Varied)

Features

  • (Mostly) Organic
  • Brunch
  • Large Group-Friendly
  • Romantic

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Hours

11am - 10pm
9am - 10pm

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