Dinner at Candle Café in New York

by Valerie on April 4, 2012 · 6 comments

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I mentioned yesterday that I made a quick day trip to New York last week to see former co-workers and good friends – it was lovely to see everyone.  Even though I was in New York for just under 12 hours, I ate marvelously well – lunch was delicious brown rice avocado cucumber rolls at one of my old Brooklyn go-to’s, Nanatori’s – I used to go there after going to the gym around the corner. I was delighted to find out they could handle gluten-free well.  I meant to stop by Babycakes, but I ran out of time (though I was able to get in some successful shopping at Moo Shoes) before meeting up with a long-time college friend at Candle Café.

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Candle Café was one of my favorite places to visit when I made it to the Upper East Side (I worked downtown and lived in Brooklyn, so trips uptown were sporadic) – I have always loved the atmosphere. It is both classy and comfortable, and I have had great meals there.  It has extensive vegan offerings, and the gluten-free version of the menu has plenty of choices.  I started with a Viva Verde juice, which was vibrant and green without being too green or bitter (I can drink kale dandelion ginger juice straight, yet still prefer milder green juices) and a House Salad with the Toasted Cumin dressing, which was divine.   

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My friend and I then split the Sweet Potato Cake filled with Tempeh Chorizo and served with sour cream and cucumber radish salad.  I enjoyed it though I would have liked a little more tempeh, as I think it would have added to the texture of the sweet potato cake.  That said, the flavors were spot-on – sweet but savory, with a little creaminess and crunch from the sauce and garnish.

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Tuesday last week was cold and dreary, so while I was tempted with the Chipotle Baked Tofu, I wanted milder comfort food – so I went with the Good Food Plate (choices of four sides and two dressings or sauces).  I picked the Quinoa Vegetable Pilaf, steamed vegetables, steamed greens and a baked sweet potato.  For the sauces, I went with the country gravy for the baked sweet potato, and tahini dressing for the quinoa and steamed vegetables.  Everything was superb – the vegetables had crunch, the quinoa was well seasoned and the sweet potato perfectly steamed.  I felt full and satisfied and warm.  Candle Café was exactly as I remembered – soothing setting, comforting food and great green juice. 

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{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Gena April 4, 2012 at 3:00 am

Looks amazing. So jealous of your fine meal!!


2 Hannah April 4, 2012 at 3:02 am

Oh how I dream of a place that offers vegan fare in both simply nourishing and more creative forms! Heck, I dream of a vegan place of any description. Yearning. That Good Food Plate looks wonderful.


3 JL goes Vegan April 4, 2012 at 11:00 am

That looks fantastic! Would you believe I have only eaten at Candle Cafe twice (I save my pennies for C79!)? I need to try out the new C Cafe on the upper west side…soon!


4 bitt April 4, 2012 at 4:53 pm

yum! candle cafe! I am in more of a vegan shoes mood than treats mood too, so I understand the priorities. hope you found what you wanted there!


5 Maggie April 4, 2012 at 11:44 pm

I am envious too! Pete and I went to Candle Cafe when we were there in the summer. So good! Where is MOO shoes? You’re lucky to fit in a day trip to NYC! My dream come true :)


6 Heather @Gluten-Free Cat April 6, 2012 at 8:41 pm

Oh, how lovely! We almost ran into each other!!! (Yes, in a city of 8 million people…) I was in NYC last weekend but opted to try Blossom instead of going to Candle again. LOVE Candle, but there are only so many meals in a weekend! :) Glad you enjoyed and reconnected with old friends. One of these days we need to meet face to face!


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