Dharma Kitchen is a relaxed, serene and soothing spot on Broadway that serves up "mindful" vegan dishes.
The food here is very similar to Fresh/Juice for Life in Toronto which I loved going to. Lots of different rice bowls to choose from. From reading previous reviews, I prepared myself for indifferent service, but it actually was pretty good. The restaurant felt very peaceful and calm, unlike the bustle of the Naam. The food was really delicious and it is nice to know you are eating something that is both healthy and tasty.
Brought my boyfriend there yesterday but i was a little hesitant because he is a meat eater. But yesterday he couldn't keep his chopsticks and fork out of my dish! We ordred the green goddess bowl, a salad and soup and a curry dish. It was delicious! I love the quiet ambiance and will definitly come back again! The place might be a little hard to find but its well worth it!
First of all, Dharma Kitchen is a vegan restaurant, not vegetarian. If this puts you off eating here it's your loss. Flavours are rich and sophisticated. The tempeh steak is marinated in an amazing sauce that features star anise. If your experience with tempeh hasn't been good you need to try this. Their marinated tofu has a very pleasing texture and is also delicious. Their rice bowls feature tempeh/tofu plus different vegetable combinations over jasmine or brown rice and a choice of miso, tahini, thai peanut or coconut gravy. Each bowl is a work of art as visually pleasing as it is tasty. The serene environment compliments the food perfectly. Salads are a joy, bursting with colour and freshness. The protein salad, (organic romaine, shredded beets and carrots with a tempeh steak and choice of dressing for seven bucks is a meal in itself and probably the best deal in town. An appy of grilled organic mushrooms in a lemongrass sauce is five something and is big enough to share!
They also have a tamarind soup that is a perfect blend of flavours and textures, loaded with good things for about four bucks.
Dharma also features a juice bar/ smoothie menu. I always walk out of here feeling serene yet energized.
Over the past couple of years Dharma Kitchen has become my go-to place in the neighbourhood for healthy, fresh, and tasty take-out. Although it does have sit-in dining, I prefer the take-out option since I live within walking distance and the atmosphere in the restaurant is not overly appealing to me. At home, I keep a menu handy, and call in an order for dinner on average about two times a month. Of the vast selection of salads, burgers, and bowls the restaurant has to offer, I generally prefer to order one of their rice dishes. Typically, I choose either the Indochine bowl which is served with brown rice, grilled zucchini, tomatoes, and mushroom and the most exquisite miso gravy or the Basil Tofu, which is mildly spiced and has a delicious coconut curry base. Recently, my husband and I opted for a couple of different veggie burger selections and they were excellent as well. For sides, we shared an order of salad with the roasted potatoes. Both were generously portioned and the potatoes were particularly tasty! Considering the good portions of food they provide, the value is decent. I also appreciate the fact that the staff is consistently accurate in their estimates regarding pick-up time. The food is always ready and waiting or in the process of being packaged at the time that I arrive. As far as take-out goes, the service is relaxed but prompt and always friendly and I can't imagine that it would be much different for those choosing to dine in. This is a great spot for vegans and vegetarians as well as anyone who enjoys flavourful, healthful dining.
I've always wanted to try this place and I was not disappointed. I've been here twice in a week with different guests and they were all very impressed. The restaurant makes their own tempeh and it tastes WAY better than anything else I've eaten or bought in a grocery store in Vancouver. Very generous servings and full flavours. I agree that dessert is so-so but the other dishes are fantastic and definitely exceed those at the Naam.
I had a luncheon meeting here with some friends who recommended this place to me. What a great find!! I'm a meat eater and I still love to eat vegetarian as long as it's tasty. The menu variety is wide and since this was my first time at this place, I decided to go with a miso veggie burger and potatoes. My friends went with one of their salads. Our waiter was cordial and friendly - gave us lots of room and time to look over the menu.
When the food arrived, I was impressed with what I saw - the large salads my friends ordered looked fantastic and very appetizing. Their verdit on their choice? excellent!
My miso veggie burger? The best veggie burger I've had. This was one was not only well-presented, it was very tasty. I've had a other veggie burgers before and they pale in comparison to what I had here. The tomatoes on this burger were perfectly ripe and the miso sauce was very tasty. The sliced nugget potatoes - fantastic!
This little place is highly recommended - I will definately be returning with my better half.
This restaurant is meant to focus on the mindful aspects of eating and food. Enjoying and appreciating your food while taking the time to enjoy it. This is definitely possible here.
The food is organic and vegan, so you can appreciate all the good things you are doing for your body and the strength and energy you will get from the food. Also, the food is mighty tasty, so you can appreciate and take the time to enjoy the flavours you are eating, the quality of the food and the excellent preparation. Presentation too, to make you appreciate your food and this moment of your day even more.
Service is nice. I was worried it would get some kind of attitude because of the whole 'organic vegan' snobbery that often goes with that, but not here. Just very gentle and serene servers who really care about the food they are serving and your enjoying of it. It's not the fastest, but if you're taking the time to enjoy your surroundings to better enjoy your meal and time you have set aside to eat, then it's actually kind of appropriate.
Because I just can't bear hunks of tofu or tempeh I stick with the veggie burgers. The Thai burger is my favourite. A wonderful and rich peanut sauce with a hint of spice with bean sprouts and a thick delicious veggie burger on a crisp and fresh bun.
If you have maybe 30 minutes to take out of your day to enjoy yourself, eat delicious and healthy food, and take the physical energy and emotional energy out with you, it really makes your day better.
I love Dharma Kitchen! The service can be a little slow at busy times, but if you know this and can give yourself some extra time to enjoy your dining experience you won't be disappointed. The food is very healthy and very tasty. My favourite meal is the dharma bowl as the veggies are always grilled to perfection. I also really like the chai; it's very different from chai I've had anywhere else and I can't think of anything better to drink on a cold, rainy day in Vancouver. Highly recommended.
The food was lovely. I was very happy with the flavours of my dish, portion size and price point. I was however disappointed by the unfriendly, unwelcoming, pretentious service. When we entered to order (after looking at the menu posted outside) the server seemed unsure if we were aware that the food was vegan and organic and informed us in such an arrogant way that it was made clear that he didn't think we would still want it once we knew how healthy it was. As somebody who has worked in the service industry, I found his attitude extremely off-putting and offensive. I will think twice before spending my money somewhere that it apparently isn't appreciated.
Being a Vegan for many years now and frequenting Vegetarian establishments almost every day, I have to say this Gem is my favorite for quality of food , ambience and value. Freshness is obvious in all the dishes as vegetables are crisp and visually appealing, tomatoes are red, not pink and avocados perfectly unblemished and ripe.Best Chai in town ,hands down.The price of a meal is reasonable when comparing to veggie dishes elsewhere and the atmosphere is very relaxing, appropriate music and the decor, like the veggies ....visually appealing. Simple,clean,enjoyable,good food ..service is a bit low key, could be a little more upbeat ...but not a reason to miss this jewel of Vegan nourishment.
Have been here a few times for dinner and it's a great little place with a good feel to it. Know that you're eating well here and the dishes taste pretty good. Am a vegetarian so it's always exciting finding a place that has so many options. Meat eaters may not be so satisfied here (ie. my mum) but nonetheless, definitely worth the trip out to dine here!
Dharma Kitchen has fantastic vegan veggie burgers that have some friends asking if I am sure it is vegan. It is. Service is aloof but I think it's part of the serene atmosphere they try to create. Staff are courteous. Food is made fresh. Unless you like pudding don't go for dessert. The music here is on but low so you don't have to shout to have a conversation and that is very nice.
I found the atmosphere very odd at Dharma Kitchen, it seems to be trying very hard to be something it's not. It's definitely tranquil but I found it pretentious and unfriendly. Which to me is in direct contradiction with the teachings of Buddhism. Our waiter was incredibly unsympathetic about my food allergies, and refused to put my dressing on the side. He was quite condescending about it and I wasn't made to feel comfortable at all. The food is most likely made from quality ingredients but the dishes themselves aren't very distinctive. My rice bowl came with a huge amount of garlic and I didn't find the dish well-balanced. You can get very similar rice bowls, cheaper and more tasty at the Naam....without the attitude. I had high hopes for this place, it's a shame my visit was tainted by the poor service and confusing atmosphere.
My sister and i decided to try this place out after reading the good reviews and hearing it from one of her friends. We dropped by on a weekday just as it opened, so it didn't take long for us to be seated and to decide what to order. Our server was helpful when we asked him a recommendation for a "cocktail" we wanted to try. (more of a shake) When our cocktail came, we each took one sip and immediately wanted our main courses to arrive to help wash away the taste. Not at all tasty. When our food DID arrive, we gladly dug in while leaving the cocktail more than half full. Dessert was ok.
All in all, the food was decent, although not as flavorful as we would have liked. A bit expensive for what we got. Be careful about the drinks.
I had a chance to try out this delightful restaurant while on vacation with a friend in August 2008. I really enjoyed their excellent fresh and tasty dishes. I highly recommend their fruit smoothies, a perfect starter. Their miso gravy veg burger was absolutely delicious! I also recommend their tapioca and banana hot dessert, which was cooked perfectly. I will definitely be back to this restaurant next time I'm in Vancouver. This vegetarian restaurant is easily one of the best in Vancouver.
My Daughter and I simply love this restaurant and frequent it about 2x per week (often as take-out). The best thing about Dharma is the food. You can see all the ingredients layed out at the back of the restaurant. Everything from Pineapples in a wooden barrel to Zucchini and Organic Katsup.
There is really something special about their Tofu however. It's moist, juicy and crumbles in your mouth while tasting fantastic. Red Curry Tofu is my husband's favorite while I prefer the Green Goddess with a side of Tofu Steaks.
We eat a lot of Tofu and travel a great deal. We can say without a doubt that Dharma has the best Tofu we have ever tasted - this coupled with their delicious other flavors has won us over.
Be sure to try their Miso Gravy too!
The only downside is they don't serve Alcohol (darn Buddhists) :)
I first tried this restaurant about 1 year ago. I was really surprised by the simple manner in which they prepare their food and run their restaurant.
The food is absolutely delicious. Their tofu steaks are the juciest I have ever tasted - and I EAT A LOT OF TOFU!. I preferred their miso gravy over that of Naam because it clearly was less oily and had more flavor.
The Tempeh is really quite wild, I distinctly tasted liquorice root infused into it. My favorite dish is now the Dharma bowl and I then order a side of Tofu Steaks, so that I get the best of both worlds.
However, their red curry tofu is also delicious. I prefer it over brown rice (they use jasmine rice by default but the brown gives it that extra added umpf).
Dharma is not a trendy restaurant. It is a simple, delicious place to get outright delicious & nutritious food.
I have sent many friends there and all love it.
If your idea of 'Asian cooking' involves bland tofu and pawn shop Buddhas, this is the place for you. Catering to the Western caricatures of the Orient, Dharma Kitchen provides a soothing atmosphere for armchair travellers. The tacky import shop next door completes this theme: you can buy a Prajna Smoothie and a sarong all on the same block! But in all seriousness, you will encounter a small, uncreative menu that is none the less fresh and healthy. Vegetables are usually abundant in flavour and pleasingly arranged on the plate. The fruit-juice cocktails are excessively priced and undersized, although the staff will usually offer a top-up from the blender's remains. This would serve as a casual dining place for trendy couples moving between the yoga studio and the Sylvia Browne hardcovers of Banyen Books, also in the vicinity. It's a non-threatening environment that delivers reasonable meals at reasonable prices. It lacks the woody charm and character of the Naam or the authenticity of the Cambodian Buddhist restaurants near Main Street. However, if you're in the mood for a rice bowl after getting a Shiva tattoo, this is the place for you. Don't expect to see many, if any, Asian patrons in the joint, however.
I was really excited to try this place. Whenever I walked by I thought: I should check that place out. However, I should have really just kept walking by.
Although the decor is simple, I did't mind that. I also didn't mind too much that the server was less than friendly. What I did mind was the boring food. There were three of us eating together when I went and everything was just bland, dull and boring. Also, the drinks are overpriced. I won't go back. I can make similar yet far better food at home.
I journeyed to dharma kitchen for the first time with a friend on a rainy day for lunch. The menu seemed full of delicious concoctions. We both ordered burgers with different sides and they were excellent. Texture, flavour, perfectly sauced and paired with fitting veggie toppings. I really like the calming atmosphere - quiet monk chanting music and just the right amount of attention from our server who made sure to fill up my companions water quickly after she emptied it (girl drinks a LOT of H2O). I also ordered one of their house specialty chai drinks...it was just what I needed on a rainy summer day! I felt prices were more than fair - a filling, healthy lunch cost us about 12 dollars each. This is a great spot to show carnivorous friends how delicious an organic vegan meal can be, I can't wait to journey there again soon.