Vegie Bar - The best kind of bar.

Vegie Bar - 380 Brunswick St, Fitzroy

It was Saturday afternoon, we'd been strolling the streets of Melbourne in that annoying touristy way and we felt like eating again. After a quick search on Yelp, we were headed back to Fitzroy to Vegie Bar. Having eaten a vegan diet for over a year now, I've come to expect vegetarian/vegan places to be small, cramped and filled with second-hand furniture. This place was a huge surprise. It's light, airy and feels like an old warehouse conversion. We were seated (yes, it's table service) and handed menus.

Vegie Bar, Brunswick St, Fitzroy
Image Source: http://vegiebar.com.au

Although I was still on my carb-loading mission before the Melbourne (half) Marathon, I was hanging for a green juice. I opted for the one on the specials board with kale, avocado, macca, apple and a few other green bits and pieces. Mark went for the cleaning juice with berries. If you've read my other blogs, you'll know I'm a bit picky when it comes to my juice. I don't like ice in my juice and I like to taste the pulp because I like to know its come from vegetables. These juices were A+++, perhaps better than my own. They were more smoothie than  juice and they tasted terrific!

Vegie Bar, Fitzroy - Green smoothie and Cleansing juice
Green smoothie and Cleansing juice

After ordering our meals, we waited, and waited, and watched three other tables arrive, order and receive their meals while the staff stood in the doorway next to our table talking. I eventually managed to get one of their attention and asked her to check on our meals. She returned and let us know they'd be five minutes, without apology. Having waited tables for a large chunk of my working life, I had a feeling this was code for "holy crap, the chef totally lost your order but he's found it now".

She was right though, less than five minutes later, our meals arrived. First up, the chips. I love the way they're presented, in a recycled paper cone, held in a cast iron stand with a little sauce holder on the side - perfect for the small-ish tables. The chips were hot, crunchy and had just the right amount of salt. The tomato sauce was probably out of a bottle but I didn't expect it to be homemade.

Vegie Bar, Fitzroy - Hot chips
Crunchy, crispy and not too salty - Deeee-licious!

Mark's Arabesque salad was "very nice". Ahhh, a man of so few words. He added "good Arabian flavours and the hummus had a nice Middle-Eastern spice to it". It must've been good because I didn't get an opportunity to try it!

Vegie Bar, Fitzroy - Arabesque salad
Arabesque salad

My Tight Tofu wrap was ok. It didn't look amazing but the salad filling was crispy and fresh. I couldn't really taste all the flavours (particularly the coriander) but the tofu was nicely marinated and the wrap was a freshly made roti (or so it tasted).

Vegie Bar, Fitzroy - Tight tofu wrap
Tight tofu wrap

Because we'd waited for such a long time for our meals, we had to up and leave almost immediately. We lined up at the cash register to pay and the guy who seated us noticed and handed us our bill while we were lining up - he was definitely the best staff member we encountered! We added two vegan cookies to our final bill of $53.

As we left, we were satisfactorily full and continued to meander up Brunswick St with our cookies in hand and talked about how damn good those juice/smoothies were. Next time we're in town, this will definitely be on our go-to list, perhaps we'll try dinner next time.

Ambiance:  4.5/5 - Nice, clean and comfortable - not your run of the mill vegan joint.
Service:  2.5/5 - Slow table service but the seating and greeting guy was great!
Food: 7/10 - Fresh and lots of it but not made with the love I expected it to be made with.

In total, Tom gives Vegie Bar 14/20 chops on The Chopping Board.

Vegie Bar on Urbanspoon

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