Groningen’s vega(n) power

Chris 29 May, 2018

More and more people are becoming vegetarian, vegan or flexitarian, and so restaurants have also become more mindful about providing vegetarian supplies for their customers. But do you know where to go for an inexpensive vegetarian meal in Groningen? Sara dug up and tried ten different restaurants, totally or for the most part vegetarian, rating them from 1 to 10 for quality, vegetarian supplies, price and location.

PLAT (600x450)

PLAT
Plat is a burger restaurant which offers five different burgers and each of them can be ordered as vegetarian. Its specialty are the delicious fried chips, which are available in three different sizes. There is also a special offer called Plat Combi: €10.50 for a portion of fries, a hamburger and a drink.
The place is quite tiny, and so are the tables, which for the most part are hanging from the wall, but the place is pretty nice. The furniture is lovely and from where you sit, you can see the cooks preparing your dish. I ordered a Plat Combi with an Italian Burger: a hamburger (obviously the vegetarian option), parmesan, arugula salad and tomato. The hamburger was great, and so where the fries, which were perfectly salted and spiced.

burger PLAT (600x450)

Score
Quality: The bread wasn’t the greatest I’ve eaten, a little bit chewy for my taste. However, apart from that the rest was great. 8/10
Vega supplies: Every burger can be vegetarian, maybe with some modification of the other components of the hamburger if necessary (bacon for example), which is a big bonus. 10/10
Price: single dish prices are super fair and the Plat Combi offer is a great idea. 10/10
Location and interior: the place is located in the city centre, near Vismarkt, so it’s easy to reach and near the shopping area. The space is quite small but there is room for having lunch in couples or with few friends.  9/10

Info:  http://www.platfrietzaakgroningen.nl/
Address: Astraat 10

HET BAKKERS (600x450)

HET BAKKERSCAFE
Het Bakkerscafè is a popular cafeteria located in the city centre. You can go there for a break to have a coffee and a piece of cake or for having a healthy lunch. The great idea of this place is that you can eat as much bread as you want, you just need to get up and go to the corner where there is a cutting board and many varieties of super fresh and soft bread. You cut all the bread you want, put it in a basket and bring it to your table. There are two rooms and plenty of seats. As a drink I ordered a kiwi and orange juice and as my vegetarian choice a Geroosterde vega mix which consists of roasted eggplant, zucchini, peppers and tomato with soft cream cheese and balsamic vinegar. I really appreciated that the menu was translated in English so that international customers could understand everything. From my point of view the quantity of the food was a bit too little, but it tasted really good.

bread variety HET BAKKERS (600x462)

Score
Quality: everything was super fresh and tasty. 10/10
Vega supplies: I checked the menu for vegetarian supplies and found at least four different dishes. Pretty good! 8/10
Price: Notwithstanding the fact that my meal was not so plentiful, the price is fair enough. 9/10
Location and interior: The cafeteria is located in the city centre, so it is easy to reach. There are many seats but it gets full pretty easily, especially on weekends. There is only one bread cutting corner, which is quite small so you probably have to be in line for a few minutes before having your own basket of bread especially if the place is full. However, there is always fresh bread and as soon as any variety finishes they replace it quickly. 9/10.

Info:  http://www.hetbakkerscafe.nl/
Address: Zwanestraat 26

FEEL GOOD

FEEL GOOD
This cosy place is located near the Academy Building of the University of Groningen, in the Oude Kijk in Het Jatstraat, a weirdly named street full of cafes as well as shops. As soon as you get in, you can see many plants that decorate the interior, a big wooden table at the centre of the room and other comfortable seats at its sides. They also have a good taste in music which is always pleasing while eating. The waitresses are very smiley and nice, and as I sat down, one of them showed me the English menu so that I could understand what I was going to order without asking too many questions. I had a Feel Good Burger, a quinoa burger and vegetables with an addition of creamy goat cheese, served with crispy vegetable crisps. To drink, I took a bloody berry (you probably can guess what it is by the name). It took a little bit longer than I expected to receive both drink and meal but then I immediately forgot about it because everything was so yummy! The crisps were crunchy and tasted a little bit sweet and the burger was huge and tasty. Besides, every juice sip was a refill of health.

burger FEEL GOOD (600x450)

Score
Quality: everything tasted super good. The vegetables as well as the fruits used for my juice were certainly fresh and savoury. 10/10
Vega supplies: What can I say? Every supply on the menu is vegetarian or vegan so nothing else to add. 10/10
Price: the price for a meal is approximately 15€, so not bad at all. What I found a bit expensive at first were the juices and smoothies. But as soon as I received my smoothie, I realized the price was fair enough because it was a big glass and at the end of the meal I was totally full and didn’t need to drink more. 9/10
Location and interior: in the city centre, near the Academy Building. The interior is enjoyable with many plants and flowers. it’s like eating in an inside garden. 10/10

Info: https://www.feelgoodgroningen.nl/
Address: Oude Kijk in Het Jatstraat 29

wraps DE HERBIVOOR (600x450)

DE HERBIVOOR
This bio vegan salad bar is located in one of the busiest street of Groningen. Zuiderdiep in fact, is full of restaurants, cafes, coffee shops and you can also find the cinema Pathè here, as well as Minerva Art Academy at the end of the street. This restaurant is completely vegan and as you enter you can sense a nice atmosphere. The table are all in queue on the right side of the room while the counter is on the left. There aren’t many seats, approximately seven tables inside and two outside. The waitress kindly gave me an English menu. I tried the carrot juice, a small soup as a starter and a spelt falafel wrap with salad as a main dish.

soup of the day DE HERBIVOOR (600x450)

Score
Quality: Everything tasted very fresh, but it lacked salt and spices. 8/10
Vega supplies: everything vegan! 10/10
Price: I found it a little bit expensive for what I had. Everything was good but quite simple. 8/10
Location and interior: easily reachable, it’s tiny but enjoyable at the same time because it’s not chaotic. 9/10

Info: http://deherbivoor.nl/
Address: Gedempte Zuiderdiep 59

KATTEN POESLIEF (600x450)

KATTENCAFÉ POESLIEF
This super cat friendly café is just outside the popular area of the city centre. As you enter you will find a shop for cat addicts with sweaters, bags, socks and many other things. In this area there is also a tiny kitchen where food and drinks are prepared before being brought into the other room were costumers have a sit and can cuddle and play with seven cute cats. The room is nice with comfortable seats and six tables. Obviously, there is limited seating in order not to annoy and stress the cats so if you want to be sure to have a seat there you can easily make an appointment on their website or make a call. For lunch I had a warm toast with goat cheese, arugula, honey and walnuts combined with natural chips and an elderflower fresh drink. I also had a piece of lime cake this time: the waiter told me that he made it in the morning so I couldn’t refuse. Oh, it was super good. I really enjoyed looking at the cats playing and sleeping while I was eating. It’s important to follow some basic rules in this café especially with food and behaviour so both costumers and cats can enjoy each other’s’ company.

KATTEN POESLIEF 4 (600x450)

Score
Quality: the toast was good but not special and the chips didn’t convince me but the drink and the cake were great. 8/10
Vega supplies: everything on the menu is vegetarian or vegan. 10/10
Price: At the bottom of the menu you will find written that prices may be a little higher than usual because they have to make expenses for keeping the cats. However, prices are fair and from my experience even a little bit lower than in other places. 10/10
Location and interior: as you enter the main entrance you find a little cat souvenir shop where you can also hang your coats. This room works like a barrier to prevent cats from escaping to the street. The second room is the cats’ house and there you are their guest. There are enough seats both for families or group of friends and seats for couples as well as cats’ cushions, a tunnel, a scratching post and as many toys as you and the cats can handle. There are stairs that bring you to another floor which is accessible only to staff members, and cats of course! The furniture is nineties style, simple and functional. 9/10

Info: http://kattencafepoeslief.nl/
Address: Nieuweweg 14

ANAT

ANAT
This vegan lunchroom and cafeteria is located in a lovely place. You can find it near the city centre at the corner of Oranjesingel and Kerklaan close to Noorderplantsoen, one of the main parks in Groningen. There are some small tables outside where you can enjoy food or drinks while watching the park on sunny days. When the weather is not that good, you also have a wonderful view from the inside, thanks to the big windows both on the ground floor as well as on the first floor. I ordered a rood smoothie with red fruit, banana, oat milk and a Combi, which means a combination of all the home favourite choices (salad, soup, slice of bread with fresh vegetable). The smoothie was truly flavoursome and creamy. My meal was inviting and turned out to be fresh and tasty and it was really nice looking at the park in front of me through the window.

main dish 1 ANAT

Score
Quality: the food was undoubtedly fresh, otherwise it couldn’t taste like that, especially since it was almost unsalted. 10/10
Vega supplies: everything vegan. Super! 10/10
Price: The smoothie seemed a little bit expensive at first sight, but when I took the first sip I realised how good it was. Both the meal and the drink were worth the money. 9/10
Location and interior: in front of the park, also close to the city centre. The interior is chill but rather tiny. However, there is another room upstairs where you can also enjoy the view so there is enough space. 10/10

Info: http://anat.nu/
Address: Verlengde Grachtstraat 1

PERNIKKEL

PERNIKKEL
This is the perfect place if you want to do some shopping before having lunch or dinner. In fact, it is located very close to Primark and MediaMarkt. There are four tables outside and I would have loved to eat there since it was a sunny day, but unfortunately, they were already taken. Dutch people go crazy when they see just one ray of sunshine! I therefore had to sit inside. The interior was welcoming, warm and spacious. I peeked a little bit around and I saw that there were other rooms with tables. However, I just sat near the entrance because the sun came through the windows and I also wanted to enjoy the lovely day. I ordered an orange and blueberry juice and a vegetarian burger made of sweet potato and black beans with harissa mayonnaise and a fresh salad. I was served very soon, even though there were many other people having lunch and the waitress was so smiley that she cheered me up. She even asked me if I wanted help to understand the menu because it was only in Dutch.

burger PERNIKKEL

Score
Quality: both my drink and the burger were super tasty. The mayonnaise really matched the salad and the vegetarian burger. The bread was crunchy and warm. 10/10
Vega supplies: there is a vast selection of vegetarian or vegan products. Not everything on the menu is vegetarian/vegan but many choices are. It’s nice that you can go there with non-vegetarian/vegan friends so that everyone can enjoy a good and tasty meal. 10/10
Price: everything is super affordable. In terms of price performance, I was very happy with what I ate. 10/10
Location and interior: near the shopping area and in a good spot for sunny days. Inside it’s quite big and friendly. The only thing that I didn’t appreciate is that it might be a little busy in the street so if you decide to have a bite outside keep that in mind if you prefer silence. 9/10

Info: http://www.pernikkel.nl/
Address: Aweg 2

BLABLA

BLA BLA
There are many places that only serve dinner and I chose three of them with vegetarian supplies because I thought that it’s nice to go out for dinner sometimes as well. The BlaBla restaurant is between the Noorderplantsoen park and the city centre. As you enter you can enjoy the unique and peculiar style of the room with many plants and candles, small animals’ statues and big balloon-shaped chandeliers. I ordered an Italian antipasto with olives, squares of parmesan cheese, artichokes, suppli and breadsticks. After this taste of my home country cuisine, I ordered a main course without knowing what to expect because the menu was in Dutch and I guess I felt brave and curious at that moment. I highly recommend not to do this unless you’re someone who likes to eat everything. Unfortunately, it wasn’t really my thing because I assumed I ordered an Indian specialty, which it was not, and it was also way too sweet for me. However, it was my fault so I take all the responsibility! As a drink I took a glass of white wine and that was really good.

italian antipasto BLALBLA

Score
Quality: from what I’ve eaten everything seemed quite fresh, but since it was not to my taste, you should go and try yourself. ?/10
Vega supplies: it’s a vegetarian restaurant, with good wines and beers too. 10/10
Price: having dinner at restaurants is more expensive than having lunch. I found it a little bit high-priced. 7/10
Location and Interior: I really enjoyed the interior. It is also located in a nice area, close to the park as well as the city centre. 10/10

Info: http://www.bla-bla.nl/
Adress: Nieuwe Boteringestraat 9

KULT

KULT
This place, like Kattencafé Poeslief, is pretty close to the main square Grote Markt. From the outside it seems tiny and cosy, with many seats on the sidewalk, but as you enter you discover a room downstairs with many more tables. The atmosphere inside is peculiar, with dimmed lighting, candles and tables and walls painted pink and green. I took a seat inside, since outside was full and a little too fresh for me. The menu was written on a blackboard but you could also read it from a plastic-coated paper. The guy who waited on me was probably the owner and he was really attentive all the time, making sure that everything was to my taste. As a drink I took a fresh beer and a meal salad with goat cheese croquettes, blueberry and coriander dressing. This meal was a sight for sore eyes: salad, fresh fruit like strawberry, pear, blueberry, apple gave the plate an extra kick with all those colours and the sweet taste; walnuts provided the crunchiness while the croquettes were hot and tasty. I asked for a dessert and the owner suggested a chocolate vegan fudge, which was delightful. His kindness peaked when he offered another piece of fudge to my friend who was literally begging me to share it.

quique KULT

Score
Quality: super fresh, colourful dishes, tasty vegetable and sweet fruits. The chocolate fudge was delicious and soft, perfect for chocoholics. As stated on its website Kult is proud to be the winner of the 2010 Sustainability competition and all the meat and many of the products are organic, the fish is sustainable catch only and is provided with an MSC mark. The tableware is second-hand.  10/10
Vega supplies: there are many possibilities for vegetarian or vegan customers. These are marked with an asterisk near the name of the dish. 9/10
Price: the prices are quite standard. Thinking about the price performance I guess this place could be one of my favourites. 10/10
Location and Interior: pretty colourful, maybe a bit odd with its 80’s style but still nice. I liked the friendliness and warm welcome of the owner and the place itself. 9/10

Info: http://www.cafekult.nl/
Address: Steentilstraat 36-1

interior 2 Brusselslof

BRUSSELS LOF
Are you looking for something special, maybe for a date? Then this is the perfect place. Perfectly located in the city centre, as you enter you notice the elegance and the attention to details with classical music in the background and a candle lit on every table. The chef was waiting for me and he showed me to my table. This is not the kind of place where I am used to going for dinner. So at first, I felt a bit inappropriate. However, I was very impressed by the refinement and the attention to fine details of the restaurant and soon I started enjoying everything. The menu was in Dutch so the waitress offered to give me some explanation. I ordered gnocchi with asparagus, spinach, slices of truffles and tomato, with a creamy cheese sauce, accompanied by a glass of Chardonnay. While waiting they brought me and my date a starter on the house which consisted of a sliced baguette with butter and diced tomatoes and a spiced small salad with lettuce, carrots, tomatoes and onions. As a dessert I had a chocolate mousse with some cream aside and a coffee liquor.

starter Brusselslof

Score
Quality: my main course wasn’t like I expected, I guess I imagined something more similar to the Italian gnocchi and I found it a bit bland. Despite that, everything was great. 9/10
Vega supplies: everything on the menu is based on fish or vegetarian ingredients. 10/10
Price: the place is a refined restaurant so I was expecting higher prices. For a starter they charge approximately €11 and main courses are around €20, while desserts cost about €7. Not a cheap place but on the whole I was fairly happy with my dinner. 8/10
Location and Interior: Gorgeously adorned, the atmosphere was sensational. 10/10

Info: http://www.brusselslof.com/
Address: Akerkstraat 24