The Workshop Vegetarian Cafe is a brand new, family owned and operated restaurant in the heart of North Vancouver. Upon driving down the more “industrial like” street, The Workshop stuck out like a sore thumb….but, in a good way. With its corner spot location and bright windows on all sides, walking into the cafe was completely inviting and enticing. From the shabby chic decor, incredible smells, and in-house baking, how could it not be? Their concept of using locally grown and organic ingredients where possible was readily noticeable. They even have a little store with some ready to go lunch options, in-house made granola clusters and apple chips, and drinks for a quick lunch or snack.
The constantly changing menu is written on the chalkboards as is the locally roasted organic coffee and tea options. We had to try a little of everything of course. We tried the organic Matcha Latte, the Yuzu-Ginger Latte, and the Pumpkin Spice Latte. Already sweetened but incredibly unique and delicious flavors, these piping hot coffees were exactly what we needed on this dreary day.
Next came the food! But, where to start? That was easy….we will take one of almost everything! As we sat enjoying our latte’s we were served a few of their baked goods made by the owner herself. From the vegan cinnamon bun, with icing of course, (made with organic bread flour) to the chocolate mochi muffin, eating sweets never tasted so good (or so healthy!)
We quickly moved on to their signature Smashed Avocado Toast on organic natural yeast bread. Not only is this bread made on the premises but it is made with fermented apples instead of yeast. Who would have known? Not me. I was too busy enjoying the thickly sliced bread and the incredibly delicious avocado with fresh tomatoes on top. What a perfect way to start my meal. But, there was more! How could I stop there?
I was there to try the ramens and with four to choose from, I had to only choose two sadly as my eyes were bigger than my stomach. We narrowed it down to the Organic “Nama” Shoyu Ramen and the Organic Spicy Tan-Tan Ramen. We couldn’t have been happier with our choices. The smells that came from these two dishes were out of this world.
Let’s start with the “Nama” Shoyu Ramen. With the base of this dish being a mushroom broth and topped with truffle shallot oil, we knew we were in for a treat. All the noodles and soup base are vegan and again made in house by the owner’s family. This complex layered dish had us second guessing if this dish truly was vegetarian!! We couldn’t get enough of the broth or the noodles. But, then we realized we still had the Tan-Tan to go.
We had to save room for this butternut sesame broth with a mushroom/nut medley. This creamier broth looked spicier than it tasted. That’s a good thing!!! The spice was noticeable but it again was the broth’s flavour that caught our attention and kept it.
This ramen is made from a chick pea miso which makes this a soy free option. It was hard to pick a favourite so we didn’t!
Let’s just say we left beyond satisfied, not missing meat of any kind, and wanting to go back again and again. With so many gluten free and vegan options, this restaurant and it’s people were beyond worth the drive.