Portland >Blossoming Lotus
This Irvington oasis of dietary uprightness has one of the healthiest happy hours around (M-Sa 3-5pm)—get live nachos and raw lettuce wrap specials with your Levitation’s True Mystery mezcal cocktail.
When hungry herbivores crave a large helping of greens outside of their own kitchens, they head to Blossoming Lotus, where the standout Crispy Thai BBQ salad is packed with filling ingredients and crave-worthy flavors that will make even the most discerning of diners happy.
I have hear all the reviews. This place was supposed to be healthy and great. So when my vegan friend from out of town came to visit, I thought surely the Blossoming Lotus would be an easy win, WRONG! So there's this line, RIGHT through the middle of all the tables....uncomfortable. When we finally get up to the counter, the people were pretty rude, wasn't sure if it was the stress of the crowd or what, but we decided to order anyway. So we each ordered a little soup, shared a sandwich, and ordered some sort of ginger lemonade or something. The lady said, "find a table and we'll bring your food out."
30 Minutes later......Still no food or drink. Lot of negative energy from the people in line leaning on our table. I'm thirsty. I go ask about the drink. "They're IN the case over there!" She says, as though I'm an idiot. OK, then, I'll play it cool. I go over...no lemonades that I see. I ask again (fearfully.) "Sorry, we must be out."
Still thirsty...... maybe soup will help. It finally comes out (42 minutes into the dining experience.) Soup..... not so great. Maybe the sandwiches are what they're known for?
43 minutes into dining...... sandwiches arrive (I guess 1 minute is enough time for the appetizer?) OK, I'm an eater of spelt bread at home, and I cook from scratch with organic ingredients, but these were bad sandwiches. No character, dry, boring, and we were so famished at this point that we choked them down, literally, because we had no drink!
Moral of the story. Go ahead and try this place, but to me, it was an embarrassment. Bad food, worse service, and the unsettling, faint smell of a locker room. Maybe that's why you don't mix food with a yoga studio.
Next time friend came to town, we went up to Andina. Now there's service.
Needed: A fourth wall and a health inspection!.
I had been wanting to try BL for quite some time. I had gone there about 6 months ago, but after waiting over an hour for a table, ditched it and went over to Sushiland. When I returned, just recently, I had to wait in a long line that snaked uncomfortably around patrons' tables, and witness a disorganised staff fumble over taking and making orders.
We had no problem ordering, and the food was brought out relatively quickly, but we just were not comfortable sitting so close to people. We moved our table out a wee bit, and a woman from a yoga class came and stood right behind me as I was eating - way too close for comfort - whilst waiting for her food. And since the yoga class had just disbanded, there were a number of sweaty, half-naked men walking around the place. Now I love raw vegan food, but not in combination with bare-chested middle-aged men dripping sweat in my purview. Needless to say, my appetite decreased markedly with that vision.
If I came back here again, I'd get something to go, in the off-hours. But like reviewer "tube," I also got bad stomach pains after my meal there. So they're going to have to make major changes before I recommend them to anyone. And that's sad, because I was so wanting a Cafe Gratitude-esque experience there. This was far from that.
I love this place. Although this food is pricy, the portions are large enough and the quality of the food is high enough to warrant the price. If you ever get a chance to try the falafel, it is the best I've ever had. The raw chocolate fudge is yummy. Fresh juices and smoothies and all around really tasty healthy food. It's all vegan and some raw options. Very casual dining.
Good food, lousy, spaced-out service.
The food was satisfying on this, my first visit to Blossoming Lotus. But man, the service stinks. And if I didn't know better, I'd say there was something a little fishy going on in veganville.
My companion and I both ordered a bowl and a cup of soup. After a *very* long wait, our bowls finally arrived, but no soup. After a few minutes, we flagged down the server and inquired. She very nonchalantly said that they ran out of soup and turned to leave. Seeing as we'd already PAID for the soup, we stopped her and asked if we could get a replacement. She offered a few suggestions, but made us feel like just asking to get what we paid for was a problem.
We finally decided to share an order of nachos and just get the remainder refunded. I went to the register, told the woman the story and she said she'd take care of it. I sat back down, and my friend and I chatted. Before we knew it, another half hour passed and still no nachos. Again I went to the register, this time met with a different person. Told her the story after she bothered to stop chatting with another employee and greet me (sheesh!). She put the order in *on paper* and when I inquired about the remainder between the two cups of soup and the one order of nachos, I got a blank stare, then a "we'll add extra tomatoes." WTF?
Sadly, I'd already given these folks a $5 tip on a $25 tab, so adding another $3 wasn't really in the plan, especially given the terrible experience. But alas, I gave up and walked away. The two women working the register combined didn't have enough candle power to brown toast lightly and I didn't want to stress their wee brains any further.
The nachos finally did arrive, and they were quite delish, as were the bowls (Indian and Incan), but I'll never give these folks another dime. Customer service isn't that hard to master -- if you care, and clearly these folks don't.
Chefs specials always great. Really coming along on the live food scene. Always trying to make inprovements. The live soup is delicious! We visit this establishment once a week. The live raw fudge is fantastic as well as nutritional. Unbelieveable!
skip it. I went there with my vegan friends after we heard so much about it and it was a disappointing experience. I had better food in the other Thai restaurants on 21st and 23rd, not to mention my dish here was more $$ than at those places and bad service and I agree with the other comment have to wait for a while if you use your credit card.
This is by far my favorite restaurant. It is in the Yoga Pearl building in the Pearl district. At lunch time you order your food at the counter and it is full service at dinner. It is a very tiny place. Maybe ten tables. You will most likely have to wait on the weekends, but you can make a reservation for parties of six or more.
The food is out of this world! The raw nachos are creamy and delicious. We always get an order of the Cashew Hummus (different than any hummus I have ever had). The Spicy Avocado Sandwich, BQ Tempeh Platter and Tempeh Fajitas are my favorites. They have a chef's special every night. This Saturday they have a spinach mushroom fettuccine- sauteed chanterelle mushroom and spinach in a bed of fettuccine with garlic herb cashew cream sauce. This brought me back to my pre-vegan days and it was sooo good!
The desserts are also fabulous. The live fudge is creamy, rich and tastes like a truffle. They have vegan soft serve that changes flavors every day or so. The soft serve is extremely yummy and creamy.
They have fantastic smoothies and juices made fresh to order. They also have vegan beer, wine and hard apple cider.
The service used to be not so great. It was always slow and not very attentive, but things have changed for the better. The last two times I have been there have been so much better. They seem to have more people working and the people have been better servers.
I think this place it extremely reasonable, but I have heard others complain about the price. The thing is it is fantastic ORGANIC VEGAN food. It is full of expensive ingredients (organic nuts, fresh fruits and veggies can add up). I think the most expensive meal is $12. Most of the meals are 7-9.
My only complaint would be the location. It is very tiny. A larger restaurant could speed up the wait time and spread out the tables a bit.
I love the food here.. I'm always grateful that a place exists in Portland that offers this kind of food, even though it's in the Pearl district, which is nowhere near my 'hood. I tend to eat organic, healthy vegetarian food with an emphasis on the macro style, so this place is my kind of food. And when I'm not feeling like making it myself, it's nice to know that there's a place in town that makes it really well (because there's no other places that offer food like this). The one thing that I'm excited about is that they've begun to expand their menu, and now they offer raw nachos with nut cheeze. It's pure ecstasy. Their smoothies and raw juices are always an addition to my meal, and I love just the simiple macro bowls with quinoa, greens, beans, tempeh and sauce.. Yeah, I can make it at home, but some times I just want to be lazy. They also have vegan nut ice creams that are pretty out of this world. I love this place. I'm grateful it exists and I sure hope they expand and move another location to SE. I'm sad to read others less than positive reviews about this place; I've never had a bad experience myself.
Sloooow service, HIGH prices... BLACKLISTED.
This restaurant is a block away from my office so I go here a few times a month when I'm craving something healthier than the usual Pearl District fare.
I always call my order in and then add an additional 10 minutes to whatever they tell me they actually need to fulfill my order (usually 15 to 20 minutes). When picking the food up, you're made to wait at the very back of the line to pay for your order. If you've got cash, the employees are okay with you laying it on the counter and leaving, but if you're paying with plasitc, you're screwed. Plan on waiting another 10 minutes just to get to the cash register.
The past three times I've called an order in, they've been out of an ingredient (in this case, quinoa) and replaced it with something else (brown rice) without notifying me. Their sleight of hand goes unnoticed until I'm back at my office. And after waiting for 40 minutes from the moment I called in my order to the moment I'm actually getting to eat, I'm just too damn tired/hungry to go back and complain about their oversight/mistake (not to mention the fact that I'd probably have to wait at the back of the line to get to the counter to point out the problem and then wait another 20 minutes for what I ordered - and I only have an hour for lunch).
Lastly, their prices are steep for what you're getting. $7 for brown rice and black beans (made at home for a $1)? $2 for a side of tofu (an entire pound of tofu costs you about $1.50)? Buy someone else a meal, throw in a tip and you're out $25. For that amount of money, I can get fantastic Thai food at Peem Kaew (2 meals, salad rolls and Thai ice tea!) and have leftovers.
If they had their own space with a bigger kitchen and another register, the vast majority of my dislike for this joint would be remedied. The food is quite good (when you finally get it) and it's organic, but I always feel like I'm being ripped off after I'm done eating here - which is why this place is officially on my blacklist.
It is important to preface this review with the fact that Blossoming Lotus has been one one of our favorite eating spots since finding it over a year ago. However, today (sunday 8/12/07), has sadly changed our minds.
We began our dining experience by walking in and sitting at what appeared to be a cleared and available table, only to have our arms and hands stick to the table. Since it was Sunday, we stepped up to the counter to place our order. We stood there waiting as three of the wait staff stood around chatting about their weekend. Fully aware of our presence, it was apparrent that they felt our needs were of least importance. After our order was taken, we waited almost 15 minutes for our drink order which consisted of hot tea and juice. It wasn't until we returned to the counter to remind them that they managed to remember the drinks, which were then promptly provided. I ordered a sandwich, and watched the staff as my order was prepared. While building the sandwich the employee snacked on the ingredients, putting food in her mouth during the process of preparing the food. We didn't mention anything at the time, and I ate the sandwich. Shortly after our meal I experienced a painful bout of stomach illness. I am not sure if it was related to her strange sandwich making method, but I definitely know she didn't exercise safe food handeling techniques.
While I appreciate the availability of this establishment which Bo has provided us (he's a great guy), the service seems to have greatly gone downhill.
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