Paradise is a strictly vegetarian Vietnamese restaurant.
The first thing you notice when you enter this small family-run establishment is the broadcasting of "Spiritual Masters" on the large screen TV. To add to the kooky atmosphere of this place, there were plenty of new-agey posters trying to convert people to vegetarianism (complete with about to be shipped off to Oscar Meyers, cute cartoonish pigs saying "Thank-you!") . The service was really quite slow since there was only 1 cook and 1 server. We had to ask repeatedly for our take-out containers.
The Spicy Noodle soup was tasty! Nice undertones of lemon grass in the soup. Could have used more veggie sliced meats and meatballs though.
Deep fried spring rolls were okay, some were a bit burnt. The sweet-chili sauce seemed like it came straight out of a bottle.
Ginger chicken was quite tasty. LOVED the julienned swaths of ginger sitting on top.
Veggie stir-fry was unremarkable.
Brown rice was a nice option to have on hand.
Portions were a bit small, but hey this is boutique style Vietnamese! Would go again for lunch but probably not for dinner. Nameste!
If you are looking for a strictly vegetarian place in Burnaby, this it. The Paradise is a small, family operated place with very warm and friendly service. When you first look at the menu it says "chicken" or "ham" or "duck" but don't be fooled, it is all vegetarian food. The food is similar to the food you might get at Bo Kong, using gluten based products without any MSG added to make ever-so-tasty meals.
The spring rolls are a classic starter. We nearly always have the spicy noodle soup or the wonton soup (small size) and it is more than enough for the two of us. The menu can be a bit confusing because under the entrees section there is a listing for curry chicken and potato. We ordered that only to find that it is actually another soup. Admittedly it was incredible.
Some of the other dishes don't work so well. We had broccoli with chicken (veggie chicken of course!) and it was a plate of broccoli with a few pieces of veggie chicken. There are three specials listed in the back of the menu, these are excellent value. Same with the lunch menu.
This is an excellent place that we visit at least one a week for a bowl of spicy noodle soup and vietnamese coffee.
We just happened upon this place last year when we were itching for a big bowl of soup on a cold winter day.....a quick Google search and we found Paradise! We were very open to vegetarian cuisine so we didn't hesitate to give it a shot....and we're so thankful we did.
Since then, we've been there many times. In the context of vegetarian/vegan food, their dishes are nothing short of amazing. As someone who does eat meat occasionally, I can admit that these dishes would have a tough time standing up to some meat based dishes in a "delicious contest", but for what it is, it's incredible.
It's no secret that a vegetarian/vegan diet is healthy for the body and healthy for the planet (meat takes way more resources/water to produce), so if nothing else, a visit to Paradise is a delicious, healthy adventure in eco-dining.
You won't be sorry if you try it - you just might find yourself craving a visit there for more reasons than one!
We went here for a family dinner. Small place in a suburban mall. My daughter is vegan and so she asked what on the menu was vegan as some of the menu items say "pork" or "fish". She was told EVERYTHING! We had such fun! We each ordered a dish and shared. There were 8 of us and the dishes did not all come at once. Everything was good although the fish balls were a little weird. The cheesecake and ice cream were incredible!! Two of the guys are big meat eaters but they found eating vegan here was acceptable. After years of going to restaurants and finding the only thing my vegan daughter could order was salad and fries, this was fantastic!!! Maybe they could use another waitress, but overall best vegan restaurant ever!!!
This little place in a small strip mall in Burnaby (near New Westminster) is a wonderful find. The food is a lot less greasy than many Chinese places, and has some different flavours. The spring rolls come with a delicious peanut sauce -- try some to take home if you order too much. Both the spinach tofu soup and house combination soup are lovely. If you eat there, the house combination soup comes over a burner to keep it hot.
The curried vegetables come in a light, coconutty curry sauce, not too oily. The lemongrass tofu and ginger "chicken" are fantastic, as is the eggplant curry (different flavour than the veg curry). The only dish here we really haven't liked was an eggplant dish stuffed with some sort of gelatinous goopy tofu mixture -- not sure if it was pan-fried stuffed eggplant. The sweet and sour "chicken" is interesting -- it's truly sweet and sour, not just sweet like most places make it.
The restaurant is very small but service is fast and friendly. Do try the Vietnamese coffee (just like they make in Vietnam) and the Chi cake ("cheesecake" made with tofu). Prices for everything are very reasonable. We love this place! It's closed on Sundays.
If we're talking strictly about food, this place is great. If we add in service and overall experience, I have to say it is one of the worst experiences I have ever encountered.
As I have been avoiding meat, I had researched vegetarian restaurants and in Burnaby. Even though this is a bit out of the way for me, I made a special trip here to try out some vegan pho.
As a solo diner walking in to a crowded room nearing the end of the lunch rush, all tables were filled and so I waited at the door, expecting a friendly greeting and was ready to wait for an empty table. I got a look from the server who then quickly went to the back and didn't come out for about a minute or so. After awkwardly waiting at the door, I went to the counter to let her know I was there. I was abruptly told to wait until there was a free table. I had to ask for a menu and I was sitting at the heightened table facing the window (presumably for those waiting for take out or for people who want a view of the strip mall parking lot).
I would not have minded sitting there even though a group had left the table right beside me and for the half hour or so that I was there waiting (whether for a table or for the food I decided to take out), the table was left empty and not cleaned. I waited for the woman to take my order which she didn't so I once again had to get up, pass the empty table with dirty dishes and tell her that I wanted take out instead. She didn't try to direct me to that empty table or the couple of other ones that soon became empty as people left but she just took the order. So I waited again, almost embaressingly waiting for my take out as more tables became free but were left uncleaned. I even had to ask for the tea that would have come with the meal I had wanted to eat there.
I could hear her apologizing to other guests that they had to wait so long for their food as I sat waiting for my take out. So it also surprised me that when she finally came over with my take out food (and I was starving at this point), she didn't say sorry and just gave me my food.
So sure, the vegan beef pho was delicious and fresh tasting. The vegan pork roll and sauce were also delicious. Unfortunately when asked about this place, all I can tell people about is the poor service.
What a hidden gem!
Cheap + Good, that's a killer combination for a restaurant. But what if I also add healthy into the formula?
Some very impressive things:
- In many other Vietnamese restaurants, you get cheap tea. This place actually gives you good tea.
- I tried the spicy noodle soup. The soup base was excellent. A mild spice at the beginning and then turns into a sweet after-taste.
- All vegetable + imitate meat. Healthy food for people who eat too much meat. Feels very comfortable after the meal.
- You don't get that crazy thirst after having Pho in other places. The food has no MSG here.
All of this is for less than 10 dollars. If you are not full after one order you can order another dish and it will only put you close to 15. Very very good value.
Please note: This place is packed at meal time and has a lot of take-out order. Also, the owner is the only staff, so patient is required for your food and service.
I tried this restaurant for the first time last night. Overall, I was impressed :)
I don't think I've ever been in a situation before, where I've had so many vegan options to choose from, from the one menu. The lady working there explained to me that only the "ham" contained whey and that everything else was vegan. BUT the "ham" used for the BBQ ham skewer appetiser did not contain whey. So I believed her, and ordered the BBQ "ham" skewer and also the Vietnamese Crepe.
I ate one of the skewers, and brought the other one home. I found it tasty and it would probably taste nice as a cold snack the next day.
The Vietnamese Crepe was VERY impressive!! Not too oily, very tasty and nice fresh lettuce leaves to wrap the crepe in. It's a very big serving and would probably more appropriate for 2 people to share, but nevertheless, I was able to bring the leftovers home.
The hours of the restaurant are 11am till 9pm. I arrived around 7.30pm and I think they were ready to close by 8pm, as the lady in the kitchen stopped cooking and went to sleep under the front counter. I felt kind of hurried to finish my meal and leave.
Anyway, I will definately go back because there's plenty more things on the menu that I would like to try! And the prices are very good too.
Oh and I brought home a piece of Chi cake for desert :)
I am a regular at the Paradise, both for dine-in and takeout. They have the most interesting selection of veggie meat type dishes, with variety enough to please those on all diets. I love their tofu in black bean sauce, and I'm not really a tofu fan. For appies, their fresh spring rolls (really salad rolls) with peanut sauce are great, as are their BBQ "chicken". The latter are little deep fried tasty treats that come with a sweet hot chili sauce. I could eat them every day! Others faves are the stir fried chow mein and the broccoli veggie chicken with black bean sauce. You have to try and see what you like. I'm not that much of fan of their veggie fish dishes. The vegan cheese cake is delicious!
The place is small and has been nicely remodeled in the last year or two. There is a shelf with promotional materials for vegan/vegetarian eating (self-serve), as well as a video channel that is often playing. The ladies who work there are very nice.
It's a small hole in the wall restaurant in a strip mall along the New West and Burnaby border. One would surely miss this place if one drives by, as I have occassionally. Paradise is a Vietnamese restaurant, but it offers much more than the pho offerings like most places. It's all vegetarian, but you might get a giggle from the items on the menu like beef, ham, and salmon. Rest assured those are tofu and bean products carefully made to resemble their meat imitations.
Stepping inside I found myself at peace.. the ambience is soothing. The decor is clean and cheerful. The floors are panelled laminate. I found the walls and ceilings with the wood panels quite unusual, but it works giving the place a homely and cozy feel. There are tastefully framed artwork on the wall. My only complaint is the space is a bit small, with at most 6 tables.
The servers are friendly. The menu is colorful and includes both English and Vietnamese with pictures. We ordered the hot pot soup, chicken stir fried with peppers, and stir fried noodles with vegetables. I like the hot pot it tasted great. The chicken stir fried had an overwhelming amount of lemon grass, too much in fact. Otherwise it was delightful. Finally I felt the noodles were just average. The noodles could have been more crisp.
The meal was enjoyable and reasonably priced. It's a solid vegetarian restaurant that is a must try.
We're always looking for good veggie place to eat at and after reading the positive reviews for Paradise, we decided to go for a Saturday dinner. The restaurant is quite small and every table was full. There was just one fan in the corner so it was kind of like sitting in a sauna since it was so hot out. After sitting down, the only waitress working there took about 20 min to come by. Instead of taking our orders she went around to three tables with pieces of paper for us to write our orders. We finally got our orders in, but had a feeling that we would be waiting awhile to get our food, judging from the time it took just to order. Typical Vietnamese restaurants are so fast it's scary, but this place was the complete opposite. I guess this was because there was only one cook working, but the food took 1 HOUR to come out. They really need to hire some help. My husband had a large pho and although it was good, the portion was too small for him. I had combo #2 with salad rolls, spring roll and bbq chicken. The chicken was more deep fried rather than barbecued. The spring roll was the tastiest of the three. Our food itself was pretty good, and I think we'll go back, but definitely not on a Saturday night. So to summarize, you should probably go on a weekday unless you have a whole lotta time on your hands and really enjoy reading vegetarian literature. Or order take out an hour ahead of when you want to eat.
A couple friends and I decided to check this place out the other day and were pleased with what we found. As the other reviews have said, you'd never notice this tiny hole-in-the-wall place in an unassuming strip mall along 10th Ave, but once inside, the newly renovated decor and friendly and hard-working ladies made the place warm and inviting.
Between us, we ordered a chicken pho, the 'combo 3' appetizer platter (BBQed fake ham and chicken, fresh spring rolls, and fried eggless rolls), a plate of curry fried rice, a plate of lemongrass 'chicken', and a slice of vegan cheesecake for dessert. All of this only came to 36 bucks and we were plenty full from it, so the value of this place is great.
I had never had pho before, so I can't judge its quality versus other places, but I was happy to find this vegetarian version here and thought it was really delicious and was reluctant to share it with my friends! Beware of the hot peppers they give you on the side though, they're brutally spicy!
The appetizer platter was fully delicious - all 4 things were crispy and fresh and came with three different sauces that were all good too. My favourite piece was probably the BBQ fake ham, which was seriously convincing and flavourful.
I found the entrees to be a bit underwhelming - the curry fried rice was mediocre and didn't really have much of a curry taste to it, while the lemongrass chicken (which was served with fried bell peppers) was good, but, again, not the most flavourful dish. My friends seemed to enjoy them though, so you may find them good.
Last but not least, the vegan cheesecake was delicious and a great way to end the meal!
My only gripe was that the place doesn't serve alcohol. I'm sure a liquor license isn't cheap, but it would've been nice to have a beer or wine with this great meal!
If you're trying to become a vegetarian or vegan, but still cannot forget the taste of meat. Then you can try those vegetarian meat here. They're delicious, nutritious and guilt free. Great food and environment.
I've been vegetarian for 7 years, and vegan for 2 years, however I still love those vegan ham. For desert, they carry "Chi Cake", vegan cheese cake. The taste is great and the cake is smooth and creamy.