The Good Hearted - Vegan Food in Melbourne

Scrambled tofu

Green Refectory

Inner North, Brunswick, CafeThe Good HeartedComment

Green Refectory
115 Sydney Rd
Brunswick VIC 3056
Phone: 03 9387 1150


Opening Hours:
Mon-Sat: 7am - 8pm
Sun: 8am - 6pm

Cash Only


Green Refectory cafe has being a popular haunt on Sydney Road since it opened a decade ago, largely due to it's offerings of healthy, tasty food without the hefty price tag.

A visit to this cafe on a weekend can be challenging due to the fact that you need to secure your own table among the crowds and then order at the counter near the busy doorway after navigating the huge blackboard menu behind the counter to decide on what you want (read on, and you can arm yourself with what to order).

The standout vegan option at Green Refectory is the vegan 'Scrambled tofu w/ mountain bread and picked veg' ($10) which is such great value. The lightly spiced scrambled silken tofu with caramelised onion is among the best on offer in Melbourne, and surely must be cheapest. The pickled veg can include pickled beetroot, olives and a pickled cucumber/carrot combo.

Another savoury vegan offering is the 'Spicy sweet potato and pinenut parcel' with I opted to have with a couple of vegan salads ($8.75), including a tahini broccoli salad and a spicy lentil salad (which was the standout). Soup ($6.95) is another option for lunch and on our recent visit there was a vegan 'Pumpkin soup', along with a vegan 'Pumpkin, lentil and ginger soup' on offer.

For sweets, I spotted a vegan 'Apple & ginger loaf' ($3.50) among a crowd of cakes in the front glass cabinet. Coffee is $3.70 which includes a 70 cent soycharge for Nature's Soy.

 
Green Refectory Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Also visited by:  where's the beef

A Minor Place

Bonsoy, Brunswick, Inner North, CafeThe Good HeartedComment

A Minor Place
103 Albion St
Brunswick, VIC 3056

Phone: 03 9384 3131
website
menu


Mon-Sat: 8am - 5pm (kitchen closes at 4 pm)

Sun & Public Holidays: 8:30am - 5pm (kitchen closes at 4 pm)

Fully Licensed

Must Try: Henry's White Beans


As far as cafes go, A Minor Place is a bit of a faithful old friend. It's been around for ages, always has something tasty and vegan(isable) on offer, makes a decent soy latte and is reliably open on public holidays when everything else is shut.

'Henry's White Beans' ($13.50) is a trusty vegan favourite of creamy cannellini beans in garlic and rosemary with dukkah, rocket and toast. A more recent addition to their menu is the 'Scrambled Tofu' ($14.50) which is quite a rich combo of silken tofu and mushrooms in an asian sauce. It's usually piled in a generous heap on top of sourdough with rocket, although on our last visit it was presented in a little bowl on the side - which luckily was still enough to satisfy my hunger!

GH: The scrambled tofu is no longer on the menu - current menu here

You can almost always expect to find a vegan dahl or soup on offer on the specials board, which never fails to impress. We recently sampled the' Lentil & Spinach Dahl w/ Toasted Turkish Bread' ($10) which was a wholesome delight. Be sure to hold the yoghurt on this dish though.

The 'Quesadilla' ($13.50 GF) is another popular veganisable choice for lunch, with spicy paprika red kidney beans with mushrooms, avocado, lettuce and corn salsa. You can add your own lashings of Tabasco sauce if that takes your fancy too.

For something smaller, the 'New York Style Bagel' ($11.50) - a seeded bagel with avocado, dukkah and lemon can be veganised (just hold the cream cheese) or a vegan 'Berry and Almond Muffin' ($4.50) from Sugardough is the way to go.

Coffee is $3.80 with a 40c soycharge for Bonsoy.

 
A Minor Place Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

The Bear Cafe (Closed)

Bonsoy, Cafe, Fitzroy, Organic, All VegetarianThe Good Hearted1 Comment

The Bear Cafe
439 Brunswick St
Fitzroy, VIC 3065
0414 507 635


Opening Hours:
Sun: 11am - 2:30pm,
5 - 9pm
Mon-Tue: Closed
Wed-Thur: 5 - 9pm
Fri-Sat: 5 - 10pm


The Bear Cafe has closed down.

Baskets of organic fruit and vegies adorn the footpath outside The Bear Cafe on Brunswick Street, and once inside we discover that the cafe is also home to "Animal Lovers by Neo Tokyo's" retail store (which Melbourne vegans know of largely due to those towels in the last World Vegan Day showbag!). The important bit to note though, is that The Bear Cafe has an all vegan food menu!

All day breakfast options are a feature and include 'Homemade museli' ($7) with fruit, nuts and coconut yogurt, 'Fruit toast' ($5.50), Avocado and chilli on toast ($7) and the big ticket item, 'The Big Bear breakfast' ($12.50). With baked beans, mushrooms, scrambled tofu and guacamole topped with dukkah, the Big Bear breakfast is a hearty winner and a fair price to boot.

Also on the menu are a selection of toasties which all list cheese as an ingredient, and luckily for us (and for the cows), it's vegan cheese! You can order a cheese and tomato version known as the 'The Classic' ($6), a 'Mitey' ($6.50) with cheese and vegemite or a J.P's garden' ($6.50) with cheese, mushroom, roasted peppers and caramelized onion. My sidekick went for the 'Double decker' ($10.50) which, with vegan cheese, baked beans, mushrooms, scrambled tofu and guacamole is basically the Big Bear breakfast condensed down into one mega sandwich - so needless to say, he loved it.

Some specials of 'Organic pumpkin and coconut soup' and 'Organic tomato and basil soup' served with bread of your choice (quinoa and pumpkin bread were two options I recall) ($8.50) also deserve a mention for a good wintery lunch option.

If your sweet tooth leaves you wanting more, you can grab a Mr Nice Guy ($4.50) or Merry ($3.60) cupcake, a Tinkernicks Cookie ($3.50) or some (incredibly amazing) raw Pana Chocolate ($7.60). Homemade muffins ($3.50) and homemade banana bread with nuttelex ($3.50) is also on the sweets menu.

I had a soy latte ($3.30 - 30c soycharge for Bonsoy) which was pretty good, albeit a little weak. Dairy makes an appearance for the hot drinks, hence the soycharge mention.

 

Las Vegan Cafe (Closed)

All Vegan, Cafe, Burgers, Desserts, Inner North, CollingwoodThe Good HeartedComment

Las Vegan Cafe
22 Smith Street
Collingwood VIC 3066

website


Tues-Wed: 11am-3pm
Thurs-Fri: 11am-3pm / 5.30-9pm
Sat: 9.30am-3.30pm / 5.30pm-9pm
Sun: 9.30am-3.30pm

Las Vegan Cafe has closed.

So, here's an embarrassing confession - this is the first time we've eaten at Las Vegan Cafe. As one of the only all vegan cafe's in Melbourne, it's crazy that we haven't been here before, let alone regularly. On this particular morning we went for breakfast AND to pick up our amazing Tofurkey for Christmas Day.

The first thing that impressed us about Las Vegan Cafe were the prices. Tofu Scramble or homemade Baked Beans on homemade sourdough is $7 and extras (tomato, mushrooms,  tempacon, baked beans and avocado) range between $1-2. We went for the Big Breakfast ($15) which is the Tofu Scramble with all the extras on Olive & Rosemary Sourdough and it was gooood! The 'tempacon' was smokey, crispy tempeh and was the absolute highlight, I could have eaten a whole bowl of it - seriously.

Naturesoy is used for the coffee which I'm not a great fan of. The coffee was good, but just not as great as it could it been if it was made with Bonsoy.

We were handed our tofurkey after breakfast and were shocked by the size and weight of it - it was huge! We were instructed to cook it for a further hour before serving and to baste it with a special herb-laden concoction that was provided.

The ultimate proof was in the eating and we were so impressed. It had the most beautiful stuffing - complete with cranberries and walnuts - and the basting gave it a lovely golden crispy crust. I ordered the tofurkey a few days in advance and it was $60 (serves 16 or more).

 

Soulfood Cafe (Closed down)

Fitzroy, Inner North, CafeThe Good Hearted1 Comment

Closed Down.

Soulfood Cafe
273 Smith Street
Fitzroy VIC 3066
www.soulfoodcafe.com.au/

Cash Only


Putting animals on the menu didn't do Soulfood Cafe any favours. They have closed down. (June 2013)

Since the Mercy Seat closed down, I've being missing a good scrambled tofu. I hadn't been to Soulfood Vegetarian Cafe in a while so thought I'd give it a go - Soulfood is a Melbourne Institution for the good hearted eater after all, right?

With a whole new fitout and a new menu, SoulFood is actually no longer even vegetarian. The scrambled tofu is still there but that's about as far as the options go for vegans; Eggs, dairy, bacon and chorizo are littered throughout the rest of the menu. I can only presume that the eggs are from caged hens too, since the menu points out that the bacon is free range but fails to do so with the eggs. It's pretty loud and clear that Soulfood isn't what it used to be.

Ok, so now down the food. My scrambled tofu with an extra of hash browns looked pretty appetizing on arrival. Overall, it was quite nice - the toast that was served was good sourdough but could have done with a drizzle of olive oil to make the whole affair less dry. The scrambled tofu was nice but could only be described as "not very breakfasty" - it was a bit too dependent on carrot, onion and soy sauce - three ingredients I don't associate with breakfast. The hash browns also had a lot of grated carrot in them - they were tasty but again "not very breakfasty".  The soy latte ordered was just ok and the orange juice wasn't freshly squeezed.

Price: Reasonable. $29 for 1 x scrambled tofu with side of hash browns, 1 x scrambled tofu with side of beans, 1 x soy latte, 1 x orange juice.