Reviews written by chikfender
Registered on Aug 12 10
I want to like and support this place, but the service and food is so inconsistent. I have had a handful of bad experiences and every time I think of going back, I just go to Pomegranate Cafe instead. Whether it's the owner coming to my table (before taking a bite) to explain how the sandwich is not that good because of the equipment but it was the best they can do (well now I'm convinced before I eat it) or the guy taking my order struggling to draw a swastika on my ticket after I specify to make sure it's vegan - it's just not worth my time.
The owner IS super nice, friendly, and extremely talkative. She doesn't hesitate to come over and chat.
The food that I have had here has been wonderful, but the service, hours, and menu have been so inconsistent that it's an unreliable option for me. It's a perfect place to stop by for a meal/snack while at First Friday or while hanging out at the Lost Leaf or on Roosevelt Row.
The staff are kind of flaky, though the woman I ordered a raw brownie from last night was very attentive and nice. It is a very casual, grassroots community style hangout.
This is a decent place. If I remember correctly, you can get anything vegan by ordering it vegetarian with no cheese or sour cream. It's more fresh and healthy than authentic, not excessively greasy like some Mexican style food. They also have a veggie burrito option at the Phoenix airport location.
I have known people to have mixed experiences here, but my most recent visits have been very vegan friendly and tasty. This is an Indian fusion restaurant, more hip than authentic.
It seems they have changed their concept to be more like an Indian Chipotle - pick a base like quinoa or rice, then a topping like veggies or tofu, then a sauce. I have tried this menu at the new Tempe location, but not in Paradise Valley.
This is a vegetarian restaurant, but pretty much anything can be made vegan. They offer retro style breakfast and lunch food with a few twists. Eating their potato salad is really a blast from the past - creamy, consistent, and topped with bacon bits. My Ruben was very tasty and I tried some eggplant bacon that was good also. Everyone I talked to seems to have different opinions on each dish, but everyone found something they liked.
Lately, they have been offering karaoke nights on third Fridays, during which they have a food special otherwise unavailable on the menu. They are now open for dinner Tuesday - Saturday.
The food was good, but trying to get something vegan was a pain! I thought that, as a vegetarian restaurant, it would be easy to find something vegan. Instead, I have more luck at non-vegetarian Indian restaurants. The food was FANTASTIC (though I am still confused about whether it was actually vegan or not; it really was a hassle). I think I'll stick with going to Udupi Cafe, though, which also offers Dosai and Uppatham; Udupi is always clearly marked and nicer to vegans. The ambiance in Cafe Krishna was definitely nicer, though.
This is a good place for vegans, though I am not always confident there is no butter in something I'm about to order and I double-check. It feels a bit pricier than other Ethiopian options in town, but sometimes this location near downtown Tempe is more convenient.
When you're downtown and need to find a place to satisfy multiple appetites, try Carly's. I was hesitant to go because the vegan option seemed boring, but they are actually quite vegan friendly and the prices are good. I will occasionally get the vegan wrap, but usually go for the hummus trio - request vegan (the pita has dairy, but they will give you more chips or veggies or lavosh bread instead). Of course they have beer, wine, etc. too. It doesn't have more than a couple vegan options, but the servers always know what is vegan and the location/horus are so convenient to stop in.
I love wandering in at an odd hour after walking around Roosevelt Row and being able to get food. It gets extremely busy on First Fridays, so don't expect to get a table right away or at all on those days.
I wanted to like it, but there aren't exciting vegan options. With so many great places in the area, I'd rather eat somewhere else. That being said, you can find something basic vegan there.
If I'm ever out in the southeast valley, I make a point to stop here in search of vegan cupcakes. The tofu benedict and taco salad wrap were tasty and beautifully presented. Sometimes they have many beautiful vegan cupcake and pastry varieties (you have to ask; they are not always clearly marked), while other times they have one or ran out entirely.
The vegan pastries are supplied by Cruelty Free Cupcakes.
I love this place! They generally have a couple vegan pasty flavors each day, so ask your server. There were a few times they ran out, though (even when I walked in to inquire, then came back an hour later to eat at 4pm - not a busy time).
They have a kind of dark, young, hipster atmosphere with wine and beer options. The vegan Vindaloo is very spicy - good, but spicy! I love the vegan Greek.
Finally, some fresh, tasty variety on Mill Avenue in downtown Tempe! They have great vegan brownies, cookies, and bars. The workers are so friendly, will be excited to hear your are vegan or vegetarian, and are happy to help you with any allergies or food preferences. I have probably been here 50 times and have loved everything I tried. The menu offers a new variety daily, but I have seen items like channa masala, smoothies, wraps, multiple flavors of hummus, colorful fruit salad, quinoa salad, pasta salad, soup, dolmas, spring rolls, and so much more.
If you find yourself in Tempe on a weekday, definitely check it out and sample something.
This is a nicely decorated Indian restaurant with lovely serving bowls. The vegan items are clearly marked. It is pricey and I usually opt for other places unless I have a Groupon (they frequently offer them). Also, I eat plenty of spicy food, but multiple times we have somehow ordered something so spicy that it's almost impossible to eat and our motor functions diminished.
Some people I know love this place because of the decor and service (compared to most other Indian places), but I usually go for something simple delicious, and cheaper instead.
They usually have a vegan option for lunch, such as soup or sandwich and usually have vegan sweet things, including pastries, brownies, cookies, and more, all very clearly marked! Try the vegan carrot cake with maple glaze - SO yummy!
This place is fantastic, but would have a higher rating if the vegan options were consistent. I have some customer service issues, but it is all WELL WORTH IT if you have the time and you happen to visit on the right day (the menu rotates often).
One time the chef went out of his way to make me a vegan pizza and vegan pudding. Other days, no attention. The food can be amazing, if you get the right dish! Other times, the same chef was not willing to help.
Keep in mind they have limited hours and may be closed depending on ASU holidays, breaks, etc.
The vegan brownie is not terrific (I've had a ton of fantastic and easy to make vegan brownies), but it's great that they offer it! Really, it's the only reason I stop in - brownie and a beverage.
I have been here several times. The service is often a bit slow and the lighting inside is extremely green (you have to go to see what I mean), but the food is usually satisfying. The apple curry is yummy.
The server has always been one of the owners and he insists that "this is a vegan restaurant" when I specify I want everything ordered to be vegan, but be aware that their desserts are not vegan (which he doesn't always mention, I think once he said they are not made in house).
I have met kosher families that go here because it is certified kosher.
This is my favorite Ethiopian place in Phoenix. The interior is very dated, but who cares when 2 vegetarians can eat a huge plate of the veggie combo for only $12 total. One order serves two. They insisted on multiple occasions that none of the veggie items on the combo contained butter. I might have to go eat there today just thinking about it!
They do serve cocktails, in case you're into that.
This is a great place for vegan comfort food. For years, I was afraid to try anything but the No Harm Chicken Parm (which is great and reported to be super yummy from two carnivore friends recently), but I finally ventured out. I love the buffalo wings, Big Wac, and so so much more. The bowls are good, but why try a rice/noodle bowl that you can get anywhere when you can try something unique!
This is a great place for vegetarians to venture out and see what kind of variety vegans actually experience.
The falafel sandwich is cheap. This little cafe is a tasty, affordable option for hummus, falafel, etc. and their little grocery store has a lot of fun cooking ingredients.
They have specific items described as vegan on the menu and the servers are generally vegan-knowledgeable. I really enjoy the sweet potato tacos requested to be made vegan. Dishes use fresh ingredients and are created with unique, but pleasing flavor combinations in the right ratios. The comment I have heard the most from friends is that the food is surprisingly flavorful. The dishes are not served in huge portions, but they are probably the portions people should be eating and they offer plenty of small plates to add to the meal.
They have vegan tamales and soups! I wish they had more vegan options, though (salads, sandwiches). They have salads, but my taste isn't too excited about a green salad or pasta salad that I can get anywhere. A great LOCAL, casual, order at the counter kind of place!
After reading good reviews, I decided to eat there for lunch today. It was just okay. Almost any of the main dishes can be made vegetarian by asking (and making sure no fish sauce). The egg rolls they served are not vegan (many "egg rolls" are actually without egg these days); the server said they are coated with egg whites.
A little pricier than other Thai, but the atmosphere, presentation, and service is better. Ask for vegan items and the servers are actually willing to help here.
I like their pizza and Daiya vegan cheese option, but I know some people who aren't impressed or think they use too much cheese. However, the pizza is always really expensive; I end up being shocked by my bill even with a Groupon. They do have a great happy hour with half off all alcohol (with plenty of local craft beer options) and appetizers.
Make sure to specify your pizza to be made vegan as sometimes they would otherwise butter the crust.
I've been told that every vegetarian item on the menu is vegan and I love all of them! Ma Po Tofu (though this Tempe location doesn't cook the tofu as well as other locations somehow), coconut curry vegetables, vegetarian lettuce wraps, and so much more. I recommend the side of green beans - surprisingly crunchy and seasoned well.
The vegetarian combo is slightly cheaper than nearby Med Fresh Grill. I like the pita and baba ganoush better too.
Sometimes I love it, sometimes I'm disappointed, but it's always a place with something for everyone. Super vegan friendly pro: they have a vegan chart that lists which items are vegan on their website. Con: some items you would think are vegan are not, or have to be ordered special and the servers are not always familiar. For example, some of the wraps or pita bread are not vegan (I can never remember which) and you have to switch it for another option. The baba ganoosh is NOT vegan, but the garlic dip IS (really yummy, very garlicy).
Though I have not tried it, a server told me they have weekend brunch at the Tempe location with tofu scramble (which is not vegan, but can be made vegan).
My boyfriend surprised me by taking me here for lunch and boy was I PLEASED! What a terrific, locally owned place! The place was full of people on a Saturday afternoon. I had the BLT, which came with a terrific green salad, some fruit, and root chips. I was so satisfied. My boyfriend had the Roast Beef. The owner even greeted us and talked about the menu. I really cannot wait to go back. Note: we ordered everything VEGAN. Yum!
The food here feels refreshing, tasty, and clean. It's pricey and their hours are terrible (I would have eaten there many times it they were open later than 7pm, though luckily they increased the number of days they are open until 7pm). Multiple times, I've tried to walk in around 6:40pm only to have the staff eye the clock and be hesitant to seat me. One or two servers are nice, but the others seem like they have other things they are doing and serving is an inconvenience.
I have found the wraps to be the best value as they come with a side.
However, I just tried their new menu and have a feeling they won't be open much longer. The prices have increased, portions decreased, and the favorite menu items of me and my friends have all disappeared. The salad with quinoa that I ordered was amazingly presented, but the price, presentation, and portion equaled that of an upscale restaurant like Millenium in San Francisco; it was not reflective of a small, casual cafe with limited hours and hippy decor (not a negative, just the only way to describe it).
No hummus is worth what they are charging. Their raw cheesecakes, etc., are good, but they are more expensive, smaller, and are not as impressive (presentation and taste) as those at Pomegranate Cafe.
It's a little pricey for mini burgers (they want you to order multiple), but good! A representative assured me the black bean and quinoa burger is vegan. It is good (I've had enough of portabello sandwiches!).
They have an amazing happy hour with great discounts on veg items. Try the sweet potato and avocado sushi! They have several veg items for sushi.
I wish the vegan items were marked, but I love this place! None of the dishes I asked about have fish sauce in them, which is often a problem at Thai places. Most of the dishes (ordered with tofu) are vegan if you ask.
A great, vegan friendly Thai place. I usually get a curry with tofu.
The food is good, but the menu is difficult to navigate. Since they reopened, the best dishes I have had were daily specials (pizza, vegetable patties). I would order those again if they were on the menu.
The raw cheesecake was wonderful, but the cupcake was terrible - like they put flavoring in frosting over a dry cake.
LOVE it. I went to Udupi for a couple years thinking it was ohhh-kay, but finally discovered I was just ordering the wrong dishes! Now it's my favorite place. Also, recently they renovated and have a fresh, clean look with improved restrooms.
Everything vegan is clearly labeled. I love the Chili Gobi (also called gobi manchurian, the same dish without green bell peppers) and many dosai (savory crepes). Sometimes they bring yogurt raita, so vegans should request no yogurt when ordering (especially for chili gobi). The lunch buffet on the weekend is great and 95% - 100% vegan; the weekday lunch buffet is so so, but slightly cheaper than weekend.
Vegan items are clearly marked. It is great South Indian food, but is served very casual style (styrofoam plates and fast food style seating). Very tasty!
This brunch spot offers a couple vegan options. After consulting with the very friendly server, she recommended my very tasty tempeh burrito. Also, a friend didn't want their "egg" side, so they ordered a side of tofu for me; it was a couple slices of tofu nicely seasoned and topped with a balsamic sauce.
This is really a great spot for vegans dining with others who will not be eating vegan - breakfast for everyone. It was a tiny bit slow, but not a problem if you're there to have a relaxing meal in good company. All the servers seemed part of a happy family running the place.
I had a raw Italian dish with "meatballs" where the pasta is made from zucchini. It was delicious, especially the red sauce. It is pricey, but the food was good.
I was visiting from out of town and was very happy to find this cafe. The atmosphere is that of an alternative, comfortable, community friendly cafe complete with local art. The workers were really friendly (and not pretentious) and made helpful suggestions about the food, iced tea selection, and even had suggestions when I asked what to do around town. I had Machos Libre, which was good, but I would definitely try something like a sandwich or wrap next time. I wish I was in town to go back!
I was visiting from out of town and was lucky enough to get the Sunday brunch. It was a great deal and very good. I had pancakes, home fries, strawberries, and a mimosa. My dining partner had pancakes and sausage with fresh orange juice.
I was visiting from out of town and arrived with an already full tummy, but everything was so delicious and I made room for a couple cupcakes - one to eat in store and another to eat in a park shortly after. I loved everything we tried, both gluten free and not gluten free. YUM.
Even with odd hours, this is a great place! Stop by late evenings Friday and Saturday or early evening on Sunday for plated desserts! Or Sit down Saturday and Sunday mornings for brunch.
All of their items have a gourmet touch, with interesting flavor combinations and beautiful presentation. In addition to a limited (but worthwhile) menu, they have a bakery case full of mostly vegan sweets! Cupcakes, cookies, brownies, and more. They also serve vegan ice cream. All of the ladies who have served me were wonderfully pleasant. I love the Tuff Stuff brunch platter!
The seating area could be repaired and improved a bit, but you won't be thinking about that once the food comes.
They have their own bakery store in west Olympia and also sell their items at the downtown Olympia Farmers Market. They use a lot of spelt and whole grains, so their sweets are great for someone avoiding white flour. They have breads, sweets, and muffins.
In local stores or even in their shop, it is difficult to know what items are vegan. But the staff always seem to have that memorized. Some of the dairy/egg-free items have honey, so you may want to ask if they don't (they usually do ask if honey is okay).
I like the healthy, fresh perspective of this place, located in a yoga studio. But it is difficult to get service and the menu is very limited with only a couple vegan items (mainly soup). Stop by for soup of the day (generally vegan as far as I can tell).
The kale salad with lemon was just that - huge, difficult to chew kale leaves with some lemon juice. It would have been much better if the kale was chopped and a dressing massaged in.
Vegan items are clearly marked. We tried the buffalo sandwich, vegan chili, country fried tofu sandwich with fries, and the cherry pie (they had maybe 4 flavors and one was vegan). Everything was good. They have a couple other vegan entrees, including one all day breakfast option. My only criticism is that the buffalo had only a thin slice of tempeh that made it feel more like a bread sandwich and I would put two layers somewhere in there; that being said, it was still good and I'd order it again.
The bar is completely separate from the very cute diner. This is a great place to take a mixed group, with something for everyone.
I LOVE that they have a labeled vegan section; this calms that inner question "are they going to put fish sauce in this!?" However, I wish they were more flexible with other menu items. Only one curry is on the vegan menu. The server knew what vegan meant and was very helpful, but explained that all the other menu items would have fish in it. The food was good and the service was excellent (except for filling water).
I was disappointed the curries were not vegetarian, but the veg items were marked with a leaf symbol and the server recommended the PRA-RAHM (SHOWERING RAMA) dish with tofu: a delicate peanut sauce on tofu and broccoli served over fresh spinach. The presentation was nice and the dish was tasty.
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