Vegetarian cafes and restaurants in Moscow

Uncle Pasha's For the time being I'm only working on the concept but I will be happy to receive guests.  

May 7 1011  Another cafe opened up. Very near my humble abode, on Lavrushinsky, right across the Tretyakov Gallery. I wanted to do a review but just could not bring myself to enter a food establishment that dubs itself "studio", calls menu items "projects", overuses non-descript adjectives, and lists "light" as a selling point. An artsy place of the sort where Castaneda readers go to make a statement. Oh, and they call themselves "Sok", which translated as "juice". The menu is full of $10 a piece items. No thanks, not for me, can't recommend, would rather get a mushrooms and potatoes chebureki on Bolshoi Tolmachevsky a few steps from Sock.

October 30 2010  An Indian catering service noticed on the forum. Good recommendations. Proceed to

A new vegetarian restaurant opened at Pyatnitskaya 43, stroyeniye 3. Tel.: +7 495 959 3510. Tried to do a review. Overcame aversion to excessive decoration in quasi-oriental style and forced myself in. Ask for a beer while perusing their rather expensive menu. No. Asked for a coffee. No. Asked for don't remember what. No. Walked out disgusted.

Jaghannath Express.   Kuznetsky most 11, Metro Kuznetsky Most, tel. +7 495 928 3580. A combination of a cafe, a restaurant, and a health food type shop.  OK food, good coffee but no alcohol. Cheerful vegetarian faces combined with a surly security guard produce an effect that leaves me at a loss for words. Inability to have a beer with my meal does not help in positively describing this place either. The shop has to-fu, soy sauce, and credible-tasting fake sausage. The latter is a treat for carnivores in heart. The prices at the shop are often nearly double of what they are elsewhere in this already expensive city.  Recently I wanted to update the review of this place but could not make myself walk in. Just not the sort of space where I am comfortable. Too much New Age and Ikea. Here is an old (around 2000) review of the place.  Occasionally I drop by the shop to get to-fu or fake sausage. The attitude of the stuff remains profoundly indifferent.  One example from years back that got imprinted in my mind: a homeless woman walks in, asks to have her own cup filled with hot water so that she make instant soup - and is told to go away or pay for a cup of fucking hot water! I somehow thought that a bit of compassion was part of the vegetarian deal. But this land is not high on compassion. Another recent episode is from 2009, when I went to their shop for a block of to-fu. It was one of those days when the world consisted largely of rain. I was soaked. When getting to-fu I touched their refrigerator and received a considerable electric shock. Naturally, I pointed to the clerk that their refrigerator needs attention.  The response consisted, first, on pretending she is not hearing me. When I insisted that something needs to be done I was told that I should not be touching their refrigerator with wet hands. Still, Jaghannath remains one of its kind in Moscow and for this reason I have no choice but to recommend it.

POSSIBLY OUT OF BUSINESS. TO BE CHECKED. Put k sebe ("Path towards self"). Leningradsky prospekt 10a, Metro Belorusskaya, tel. 257-3987.  This cafe is part of an esoteric - whatever the term means - shop.

Avocado. Chistoprudny boulevard 12-2, tel. 921-7719.  Looks, feels, and costs like an upscale restaurant. Expensive. Years ago (around 2003), when Moscow was not as expensive, a snack for two was an equivalent of about $30. My guess is that a proper meal for two is no less than $60 but in the foreseeable future I will not be in a position to do a review.

Second location: Tverskaya 5/6 (same building as Teatr Imeni Yermolovoy), tel. (495) 629-2802

May 2010 - I am told a good meal for two, wine and tip included, was around $100.

SEE IF THEY ARE STILL IN BUSINESS  Yamskoye Pole.  Tretya ulitsa Yamskogo polya 14/16, tel. 257-1052/0490.  Again, my own experience with this place is outdated but back when I tried, unsuccessfully, to make myself part of the scene, the most "vegetarian" plate they had to offer had an unidentified part of a dead chicken on it. I'll be delighted to hear a report that they have improved.

Ganga Vegetarian Cafe. Leningradsky prospekt 37-B, 3rd floor of the shopping center. Tel. 743-4984, 8-916-644-9694. I think this is a new location of a place at is or was run by the Hare Krishna people at their center by Metro Begovaya.  If so, expect to find good cheap no-frills food and very functional service.

Visited it, ate there. Bland. soggy, expensive. The good thing is that you can buy beer in a stall next door. Good reviews from others, generally. Habitués of the Vita forum accused me of gluttony when I said that my bill for a light snack was 400 roubles. Perhaps they are right, I am guilty of one of the seven. The Ganga cafe that receives the most praise from the vegetarian crowd in Moscow. I succumb to public opinion and recommend it. I like the Krishna people because, if nothing else, they are nearly banned here in this near-totalitarian state. But the present Russian social climate is not what it takes to come up with good food.

TO BE CHECKED. Veggy Bar. Leninsky prospekt 1, tel. 238-6061,

More info on vegetarian cafes and shopping in Moscow and elsewhere in Russia here:

May 14, 2010
December 24, 2008

May 19, 2008

October 10, 2007 
June 20, 2007

See also Vegetarian shopping in Moscow / Vegetarian Saint-Petersburg 

Any volunteers to write clear  instructions how to find these places?

...The above notice has been in place for at least two years Not a single response. Why do request for help posted eg. on travel, auto, and even fishing/hunting boards/sites typically attract response. Because carnivores need to cooperate. Grass eaters are prey that relies on numbers and on running fast, not on cooperative strategy. I confess I don't like vegetarians. The traces of good found in humans are a consequence of their being hunters in nature. But that's another story. [Comment to be deleted if the vegetarian cafe concept starts showing signs of life.]