Restaurant Review: JivamukTea Café

JivamukTea Café
841 Broadway, 2nd Floor
(between 13th Street and 14th Street)
Union Square, Manhattan

Vegiboys Rating (3/4)

On the serene second floor of a building near Union Square, the Jivamukti Yoga School uses a beautiful corner of their complex to offer vegetarian fare to the public with their JivamukTea Café. The café has greatly expanded in scope since we had first visited; they originally offered just pre-prepared foods and quick beverages in a dull cafeteria-style space. Now, the café is richly designed to show off the tall windows, playful paint colors, and nice accents (particularly the stained glass works that help to bring a lot of elegance to the experience).

The menu has also expanded significantly, with an operating kitchen supplementing the baked goods and pre-made options. The café still maintains counter service only, so place your order with the cashier who will provide you with a playing card (which will later be called out when your order is ready).

We started with fresh grapefruit and orange juice to drink, and the server seemed to somehow concentrate the flavors of their fruits into a very potent concoction. The juices were great, though seemed very strong.

For my brunch, the taco toast was an open-faced sandwich of avocado, tomato, and beans with a spicy green salsa on toast. A spread of vegan sour cream coated the toast underneath these ingredients. To experiment with their baked treats, I also tried a scone. It offered no surprises, though apricot jam and cranberries helped to add some flavor and moisture.

Brian’s BLT included the best tempeh bacon we’ve encountered at any NYC restaurant so far; the texture was crisp and the flavor was appropriately smoky. The BLT included a dollop of a well-made vegan mayonnaise and a simple side slalad.

All of JivamukTea’s food had basic flavors, nothing was complex or unique, but all of the tastes were refreshing and fresh-tasting. At about $16.50 each for the brunch, we hoped to see a little more creativity in the kitchen, but the restaurant is still a pretty space with good food in a great location. It’s perfect for some post-yoga grub or as a relaxing rendezvous spot in the Union Square area.

Food (3/4)

Atmosphere & Service

Value (2.5/4)

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