When I first heard of the name Chau Veggie Express, I pictured a quick service cafe with a self-serve salad bar in the middle of a small cafe. It holds the typical salad greens in individual boxes, with canned beets somewhere bathed in red, some seeds, some cranberries, and common dressings like Ranch, Caesar, Vinaigrette *long yawnnnnnnnnnnn
So as I parked my car rather easily FOR FREE right by Chau Veggie, I was pleasantly shocked to see a spacious restaurant hipsterly (is there such a word) decorated with wooden chairs and tables, and two bar spaces.
I picked a nice wooden table by the large window. Instagram is such a powerful life-changing tool - now whenever I visit a restaurant, I'll look for the most Instagram-worthy background/table with good lighting. Thank God Chau Veggie is filled with photogenic spots.
Chau Veggie Express is a primarily vegan eatery featuring traditional Vietnamese flavors, backed with a lovely history long rooted in the love for food :
Veggie Chau's owner, Maria, and her mother Co Chau, hand crafted all the recipes through the inspiration of traditional Vietnamese cuisine. The Chau family had a Chau Kitchen and Bar located on Robson Street, but was shortly closed due to her mother's health issues. After recovery, the Chau family decided to focus more on health and hence created the magical space of Chau Veggie Express.
I am usually very decisive when it comes to ordering food (or more like I just over order and get everything I want) , however, EVERY SINGLE ITEM at Chau Veggie looked delicious and I couldn't make up my mind, so I asked for the most vain thing I could ever asked in an eatery : I'll get the most photogenic dish with a side of appy.
I grew up with it , love its flavor , but haven't had it for almost a decade until I spot that familiar word on the menu. You can imagine just how happy and excited I was to taste it ! Andddd... it was as good as anticipated. I highly recommend this to anyone who likes something sour and a tad sweet :)
The Tropical Rainstorm Bowl was DELICIOUS with so many amazing flavors and textures. Its name compliments it perfectly : a busy, jolly, colorful bowl. People tend to assume healthier or vegan food to be bland and boring, this is completely wrong. There are many health and vegan cafes in Vancouver that are tasty and popular even among dedicated carnivores. I urge everyone to give these places a try, and give your body a healthy break. CHAU Veggie is such place and it doesn't disappoint.
The Bai Sao Taro Chips with the organic tofu dip was also beyond expectation. The tip was so good that I kept eating it using the same chip and finished the entire dish with only 3 chips, hahaha. But the rest of the chips were also great on their own. It's a healthier alternative to those processed snacks in a bag filled with air.
I like CHAU Veggie so much that I return to it not long after, and ordered the following dishes :
The soup was nothing but a bowl of mouth-watering heaven, especially on a cold rainy day. I had it with noodle and it went really well and smoothly with the variety of ingredients in there. The slice of lotus root definitely added some crunchiness to the multi-dimensional texture.
The Non La Rolls was a great appetizer to compliment the bowls. Although deep fried, its light dipping refreshes the overall flavor nicely.
Chau Veggie Express is normally super busy during regular dining hours, so if you wish to avoid crowd, I suggest you go a little earlier :) I went at two odd times, once at around 4pm and once at around 1pm and I didn't have to wait to get a nice table. Overall, I really enjoyed my dining experience at Veggie Express and I highly highly recommend it to EVERYONE, including meat-lovers. Health and vegetables are not just for vegans and vegetarians !