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What: Funky vegetarian restaurant.
Prices: A bit on the dear side for Prague. Starters 80-105 CZK, soups around 40 CZK, salads around 130 CZK, pastas 130 CZK, mains 130-160CZK.
Vegetarian menu: Extensive and seems to have changed since this reviewer ate here (March 2011). Pasta with smoked tofu, spring vegetables, tomato salsa and parmesan, spinach quesadilla with guacamole, tomato salsa, sour cream and a small green salad, kebabs, potatoes au gratin and a small green salad with lemon-honey dressing, eggplant quesadilla with guacamole, tomato salsa, sour cream and a small green salad and much, much more.
**Note that this “vegetarian” menu states that parmesan is served. Parmesan is never, ever vegetarian. The name “parmesan” is protected under EU law and it must be made the traditional way, i.e., with calf rennet. There are cheeses which are “parmesan style” which are suitable for vegetarians, if not vegans, but this restaurant names “parmesan” on their menu. This is worrisome.
Drinks: Excellent selection. Juices (hot and cold), teas, beers, wines, coffees, hot chocolate (with chili and walnuts), and much more.
Service: English is spoken (helpful for those who don’t speak Czech), though the staff were not overly friendly. Overall service was adequate.
Comfortable? It’s a little cramped when the restaurant is full, lighting was very low in the evening. One could easily get the impression that they are trying to create a night club environment. Still, it was okay. The tables have a fun and funky design built into them, they were big enough and didn’t wobble. The chair was adequate and didn’t wobble either.
Was the food good? Slightly disappointing, especially if you’ve eaten at their sister restaurant Maitrea (reviewed here). The Bryndzové Halušky (potato dumplings with Slovak sheep cheese) was a brave attempt to reproduce the Slovak national dish (which includes meat) but didn’t really work. In itself it was okay but this reviewer has had better vegetarian versions of this meal. The hummus starter was good. The mulled juices were excellent.
Toilets: You must briefly pass through an icy (in winter) passage. Adequate.
My advice to the chef: Parmesan is not vegetarian, so either some of the food offered is not vegetarian or the menu falsely describes a paremesan style cheese as parmesan (woe betide them if the EU food police come their way, else woe betide them for deceiving vegetarians). For some reason the food in the sister restaurant is much better. I would seek advice from them.
My advice to the manager: The parmesan problem needs to be addressed. Turn the lighting up a little so that customers can see their food. Try to match the same standard of tasty food and friendly service one finds in the sister restaurant.
Overall: Given the choice I would choose to eat at Maitrea every time, but it’s a good option for vegetarians. This reviewer would return.
Management have been asked to respond to this review.
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What: Excellent vegetarian restaurant in the centre of Prague (there is a sister restaurant in Prague which will be reviewed here soon).
Prices: Cold starters around €3, warm starters around €4, big salads around €5.50, mains around €6, desserts around €2.50.
Vegetarian menu: All the food is vegetarian and the extensive menu is in both Czech and English. Examples of mains: spicy goulash with seitan served with dumplings, Thai eggplant with tofu, fresh coriander, chilli peppers, coconut milk and rice, quesadilla with tomatoes, fresh spinach, olives, feta cheese, rice, guacamole, tomato salsa and sour cream. Examples of starters: warm onion cakes with roasted red pepper cream sauce, red beet tartare with goat cheese terrine and spelt flat bread…and much, much more.
Drinks: Lots of teas, fresh juices, mulled juices, wines and more.
Service: Friendly. They were very slow at the beginning, which is good if you don’t like the feeling of being rushed out of a restaurant.
Comfortable? Yes. The tables are a little too close together, but the atmosphere is very relaxed. They say that the restaurant is designed according to Feng Shui. The wood used for the tables and finishings is lovely to the touch and the restaurant is, in general, a pleasant and calm place to sit.
Was the food good? Yes. Everything was very tasty and the portions very generous. The bread was served warm — a pleasing touch. The mulled juices were especially good. It was exciting to have so many things from which to choose (for once).
Toilets: Downstairs. Very nice and clean. The sinks are especially nice.
My advice to the chef: Keep up the good work.
My advice to the manager: As above.
Overall: It would be great is there was a similar restaurant in Dublin. It is definitely worth seeking out if in Prague.
Management were asked to respond to this review.
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