Restaurant Review: Café Viva

Café Viva
2578 Broadway
(between 97th Street and 98th Street)
Upper West Side, Manhattan

Vegiboys Rating (2.5/4)

The Upper West Side’s Café Viva does not feel particularly vegetarian. The atmosphere is that of a relatively standard NYC pizza parlor, and their collection of clients seems widely varied enough to give that impression as well. The place is busy with limited seating  (have an alternative ready if you can’t sit; the tables are hawked by customers), but with good reason, since the restaurant makes a good pizza.

We selected 4 of their more delicious looking slices. A Mother Earth slice had mushrooms, red peppers, broccoli, onion, and soy meatball, giving a lot of material in every bite. The stagioni slice had mozarella, mushrooms, soy pepperoni, eggplant, and artichokes; also a lot of toppings, but the artichokes helped give a more unique taste than the typical pizza slice.

However, the simpler slices tasted better to us. An al pesto slice with pesto sauce and mozarella was delicious, as was a slice of mushroom and cheese. None of the pizza was at all greasy, and the dough was a nice, substantial medium-crust that held together well under the ingredients.

To drink, we enjoyed an orange ‘n cream Stewart’s soda from their cooler (which also had a full range of other beverage choices).

At $10.50 each for two large slices and a soda, Café Viva is an OK price for a quick meal on the UES. Fitting the demands of the neighborhood, we should also mention that Café Viva offered a lot of kosher options. With friendly service, an extensive menu, and great tasting pizza, it’s a fine option for any urban vegetarian (and with its typical pizza parlor feel, it can also be a great place to bring non-vegetarians who might otherwise object to a vegi-only venue).

Food (3/4)

Atmosphere & Service

Value (2.5/4)

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