Dharmas Capitola - Santa Cruz Vegetarian Restaurants Santa Cruz
4250 Capitola Road,
|Atmosphere||Outdoor Dining, Family / Children|
|Parking||Parking on Site|
|General Amenities||Private Party Room, Wi-fi|
|Meal Services||Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner|
|Bar Info||Beer, Wines|
|Payment Accepted||Mastercard, Visa, Discover, Cash,|
Dharmas Capitola - Summary:
(from dharmaland.com) - Dharma's Restaurant is a natural & organic vegetarian restaurant in Santa Cruz, California. Founded in 1981, Dharma’s has been serving quality vegetarian food to the community near and far, offering a wide variety of organic vegetarian and vegan dishes. Our menu includes dishes from Classic American cuisine, Authentic Thai dishes, Home-style Mexican foods and Japanese Miso Soups.
Dharma's restaurant is known worldwide for its healthy, fresh, organic vegetarian foods. We are family friendly and have a community-oriented environment. We are dedicated to providing quality vegetarian meals in genrous portions.
We attempt to use the best quality ingredients available, a large majority of them being organic, such as flours, veggies, some fruits, lentils, beans, soy products, grains & pastas. We use expeller pressed extra virgin olive oil and safflower oils, and of course, we use no preservatives!
Open 7-days a week, from 8am to 9pm, serving breakfast until noon, lunch and dinner from 11am on. We offer outdoor seating are close to the beach, serve beer and wine and are available for take out orders. We look forward to seeing you soon, so please come and visit.
Dharmas Capitola - Reviews:
Positive Dharmas Capitola Review:
I used to go here all the time, when I lived in Capitola 15 years ago and was a vegetarian (a 7 year stretch), and loved it! (ie This place has been around nearly-forever!) Now as an omnivore, I've moved back to the area, I've recently went back and few times and am still not disappointed. First, I had the mole burrito, which was good and about 3 meals worth of food. Last time, I had the Dan Dan noodles, which was good, but could have used a few more veggies for my liking. Hubby had a large garden salad, which again was about 3 meals worth. My kid loved the rice, bean and cheese burrito (but never really dislikes one). I love the fact that they have kombucha on tap, and the hubby is also always happier to have beer on tap. The other day, I got a slice of raw/vegan lemon-strawberry "cheesecake" to go. It was out of this world, but at $7.50/slice, it was over $8 out the door with tax - ouch! Still it was worth it... So overall, good food, healthy's always a plus, good drink selection, HUGE portions and a little pricey. But, you are paying for good quality, organic food.
-Gloria R., Capitola, CA
Negative Dharmas Capitola Review:
I was urged to try this place by so many vegetarians that by the time I went there it was a bit of a let down. Yes, the food is good and the selection extensive for a veggie place, but the prices are quite high for cafeteria-style dining. The way food is served up here is a little awkward.
I ordered a sort of veggie-reuben-burger and coffee. When I went to pick up my tray, the coffee (which was filled all the way to the brim...why not just give the customer a cup and let her fill it herself?) sloshed all over the tray and made things a bit less appealing. You have to carry your tray to the condiment area to get cream for the coffee and catsup for the fries...all a bit too much like fast food place for me, and inappropriate for the price charged.
As for my food, I found it extremely heavy, even if it did taste good. My sandwich could easily have fed two people, and I didn't finish it. If I ordered it again, I would ask for something other than fries as a side. The reuben was so oily and rich that fries were overkill.
My take on this place after one visit: just okay. I'll try it another time, though, and order something lighter.
Follow-up 09/08: I went back, on Saturday, and ordered the mole burrito. The restaurant was busy and dirty (minus one star for that), but the "burrito" was delicious. Really more of a loose fold-over than a burrito, this was a full plate of rib-sticking, saucy potatoes and soy chicken pieces in thick mole, topped with tomato and avocado slices, and melted cheese. My companion had the kedgeree, which was just okay. He enjoyed the green salad with tahini dressing that came with it more than he did the main entree.
This is heavy food, and the premises are best described as "earthy". I'm sticking with my original assessment -- just okay. And I'm taking away one star for general grubbiness.
-Patricia M., Palo Alto, CA
Average Dharmas Capitola Review:
I eat at Dharma's more often than anywhere else because nearly everyone I eat out with is vegan or vegetarian. (I'm a mostly vegan omnivore. I don't understand why so many assume that anyone who is willing to eat meat sometimes needs or expects meat at every lunch or dinner.)
Like another reviewer, I have a love/hate relationship with Dharma's.
I love some of their food, and the plastic toy animals on various ledges and tables throughout the room. The tahini salad dressing, the basil and white bean soup, the portobello sandwich (sub?), the vegan tapioca pudding with coconut milk and raspberries are highlights. A friend loves the Bo Thai, but I think it's way too sweet.
One thing I don't like is the apparent lack of care with some aspects of the cooking, such the dried out and slightly burned top layers of the filo on my spanakopita. (It was really a spanakopita-like casserole. The spinach part was yummy.)
What inspired me to write the review and to give only three stars is their ungenerous attitude. Many have commented on the high prices, but this is something else. It is exemplified by the way the handle salad dressing. They give the same small dish of salad dressing on the side for every salad, (except the salads that come on the plate with other dishes, which are pre-dressed). The amount of dressing is enough to let you mix the rice with the salad when you get the soup, salad and rice special, but if you get the huge, expensive Gardener's Dinner salad with a side of rice, there's not enough to moisten and season both the salad and the perfectly plain (brown) rice, but they charge extra for more salad dressing. Since they always give the same amount, and since it is probably too much for some people on some salads, they'd probably waste less of it, and definitely increase good will, if they'd put it in dispensers in at the condiments table.
-Bryn W., Ben Lomond, CA
Dharmas Capitola - Photos: