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“2nd visit - just as good, maybe better.”
5 of 5 bubbles Review of Candle 79

Candle 79
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Ranked #50 of 13,559 Restaurants in New York City
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $31 - $40
Cuisines: American
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Special occasions, Local cuisine, Business meetings, Families with children, Romantic
Dining options: Late Night, Lunch, Dinner, Brunch, Full Bar, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Takeout, Waitstaff, Wheelchair Accessible
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighborhood: Upper East Side
Cross street: Between Lexington and 3rd Avenues
Transit: 6 Train to 77th Street and Lexington Avenue, #79 Bus to Lexington Avenue and 79th Street, and #101 & #102 Bus to Lexington Avenue and 79th Street or 3rd Avenue and 79th Street.
Description: Candle 79 combines delicious organic vegan cuisine with gracious, knowledgeable service in a gorgeous duplex space. Lovingly crafted food fresh "from local farm to table." Intimate organic wine and eco-liquor cocktail bar. Favorite of East Side regulars and celebrities like Paul McCartney, Woody Harrelson, and Alicia Silverstone. The only vegan restaurant ever reviewed by former New York Times restaurant critic Frank Bruni, who wrote "Candle 79 showed me the light!" We offer an extensive Gluten Free Menu. Brunch available Saturday and Sunday. Take-out & catering available, no delivery.
Dunsborough, Australia
Level Contributor
228 reviews
85 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 104 helpful votes
“2nd visit - just as good, maybe better.”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 10, 2013

We first visited Candle 79 in April 2012. That was a chance visit.

This visit was no chance. We booked well in advance, just to make sure. After all, you don't travel all the way from Australia to dine at Candle 79 and then miss out due to a booking error. (We actually consciously stayed on the Upper East Side, not far from 79th St, so that the restaurant was in easy walking distance!)

This trip we dined at a number of great NYC restaurants. In my mind, this was equal best with only one other, and that was a Michelin 3 star restaurant, so that's a big call. We had a wide range of dishes including: "live" enchiladas; grilled mushrooms; angel's nachos; a pad thai appetiser, deserts, all complemented with a lovely organic/bio-dynamic tempranillo. This was, without doubt, the tastiest vegetarian/vegan meal I have ever had - possibly better than last time. Candle 79 is probably the best of its type in the US (we were chatting to one of the staff and they mentioned another similar restaurant in San Francisco, but that's the only one), and I don't know of anything comparable in Australia. Could I go so far as to say this is the best of its type in the world? Obviously I don't know, but it wouldn't surprise me.

I had such high expectations going there I was a little disappointed with our table placement. I could have asked to move, but I'm not that type - my back was sticking out into a serving thoroughfare, but as it turned out once the food arrived I forgot all about it. I only mention this in the event that someone from Candle 79 management reads this.

That said, I would absolutely l highly recommend Candle 79 to anyone, including non-vegetarian/vegan types. I still get a few funny reactions from people when I talk about my vegetarian "tendencies" (I'm not a full vegetarian, but don't eat most meats), but if there were more Candle 79's in the world I would hazard to say that there would be a huge increase in vegetarianism. Go there!!

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Peter C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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835 reviews from our community

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English first
Zurich, Switzerland
2 reviews
“Absolutely incredible”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 6, 2013

Candle 79 is well known in the vegan community all around the world. So visiting this restaurant was on the top of my to-do-list. And I was not dissappointed.
We made reservations via their Website from home. When we arrived, we were greeted by a friendly host that showed us our table. We enjoyed some incredible Oat Beer (Wolaver's Organic Oatmeal Stout) and got some amuse bouches from the kitchen. My husband had the steamed dumplings as starter, and I had the grilled kale salad. For our entrees, we had the Seitan Piccata and the Moroccan Spiced Chickpea Cake. For dessert we shared berries and ice cream. All of the dishes were out of this world - really flavorful, innovative and beautifully presented. Actually we enjoyed our dinner so much that we went back a second time while we were in NYC.

  • Visited April 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank allaboutfreckles
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Las Vegas, Nevada
Level Contributor
136 reviews
46 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
“Best meal we have ever had”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed October 1, 2013

Every vegan knows of Candle 79, needless to say we made reservations once we knew we were going to NYC. We requested a table next to the window in the 2nd floor, they can't guarantee that you will get it but they will do their best to make it happen..and they did! We enjoyed cocktails, live cheese plate appetizer, I enjoyed the warm Brussels sprout salad with tempeh and my husband enjoyed the chickpea cake with curry sauce and we split the cannolis that are nestled in a pool of warm fudge and a scoop of coconut ice cream. We are vegan foodies and have enjoyed so of the best Portland and LA/So Cal has to offer and this was by far the best meal we have ever had!

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Niffer1977
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington, DC
Level Contributor
214 reviews
94 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 95 helpful votes
“Amazing Vegetarian Food”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 29, 2013

Everything is incredible. Really innovative, tasty and beautifully presented. Even the carnivore of our group was happy and impressed with the offerings. One visit, we had a long wait, even with a reservation, but the next time we were seated right away. Lovely restaurant.

Visited August 2013
Thank jstarr23
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edinburgh, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
50 reviews
25 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“What a disappointment”
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed September 25, 2013

I'll start by saying how much I love vegan food and how it can be really amazingly favoursome and exciting.

Unfortunately, Candle 79 was a real disappointment. My friend had booked the restaurant in advance and we were really looking forward to it.

The host was quite rude and snooty so he didn't create a good first impression. However, all the other servers were very polite although a little slow at times, particularly in getting the drinks.

Our amuse bouche consisted of 1/2 a tomato sliced up in some vinegrette dressing - not very amusing. If a restaurant is going to do this, it needs to be done really well.

The salad and main course sounded like they should have been packed with flavour from the description but sadly they were bland. Although textures were good.

Portions were small and prices were quite high.

Sadly this was the worse eating out experience I had in my 2 1/2 weeks in USA and I wouldn't recommend them to even the most committed vegan.

  • Visited September 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Jilly1970
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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