Pure Food & Wine
54 Irving Pl, New York, NY 10003
Fax: (212) 477-6932
Pure Food and Wine
Bike Parking: Yes
Good For Family: Yes
Good For Groups: Yes
Good for Kids: No
Wheelchair Accessible: No
Take Out: Yes
Alcohol: Full Bar, Wine
Takes Reservations: Yes
Outdoor Seating: Yes
Cuisine: Asian, Dessert, Healthy, Ice Cream, Vegetarian, Vegan, Pastries, Salads
Price Range : Average
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12/16/2011Provided by Citysearch -
I found my experience here to be a bit lackluster. I was quite excited to try it after reading all the gleaming reviews and even more so upon stepping into the velvety interior. Quite a romantic setting for any meal. Sadly, the food left something to be desired. To start we got the nut cheese plate, which was just okay. I felt the highlight was the jam- and there was only a quarter size amount doled out. The crackers were good as well- but again the nut cheese was in abundance and the crackers were inadequately portioned.
I ordered the tamale style dish as my entree while my partner opted for the lasagna. Both dishes were good enough, at first that is, but after a few minutes they lost their appeal. The tamales ended up being much too heavy, so much nut pate style sauce. Much too much, if you'd ask me. I left here feeling a bit uncomfortable, which was definitely disappointing and certainly unexpected considering the raw food for energy claims they seem to be banking on.
Personally, I prefer Candle 79 or Blossom for more elegant vegan dining options, as the majority of the menu items at these locations are not nut pate based.
07/31/2010Provided by Citysearch -
Aside from eating fresh fruits and vegetables, the only good things that are vegan and raw (let's not talk about salads because that is cheating) that have ever passed my mouth come from Pure Food and Wine. I take my hat off to them for making vegan and raw food so enjoyable, indeed so enjoyable that I am happy to become vegan here every three months (well, after all, there is only so much variety with vegan food when its raw).
Spring Salad of Mache, Saved Fennel, Rasberries and Toasted Almonds: Simple, crisp and fresh, this salad was the epitome of a good salad - vegan or not.
King Oyster Mushroom Scallops: Simple and a little plain - perhaps a little marinade would have helped.
Zucchini and Tomato Lasagna: It is definitely not lasagna, maybe they should stop calling their creations what they are not. Vegan/vegetarian food does not need to mimic meat (i.e. mock chicken? Does it sound delicious to you?); similarly, raw food does not need to be what it is not (i.e. lasagna), does it? Initially suspicious that the sweet and tender zucchinis would be overwhelmed by the tomatoes, this suspicion was immediately dispelled by my first bite. The intense tomato sauce alone is worth ordering this dish.
Sweet Corn and Cashew Tamales: This used to be the crown jewel of Pure Food and Wine. What has changed in the 12 months that I was away? The attractive sweetness of the tamale was gone. It was no longer the creamy plump bundle of sweetness; instead, I find small, yellow paste with spice. It is still edible (very edible), but.
Lemon Cheesecake: This cheesecake, yes, cheesecake, righly deserves its name. It has exactly the texture and tastes of a perfectly lemony cheesecake, and a very good cheesecake at that.
Chocolate and Mint Sundae: Sundaes used to be off-limits to the novices because they were not on the menu. What is the point of leaving a delicious item off the menu, I never understood. But the word has got out and now you know what to order. The other sundae - I am not interested; it just cannot be as good as the Mint Sundae.
Strawberry Shortcake: No. 3 of the my favorite dessert list.
Chocolate Passion Fruit Tart: I have never liked chocoalate and passion fruit together - one is bitter-sweet and the other is sour and pungent. Give me a good reason why they should not start fighting on my palate.
03/08/2010Provided by Citysearch -
I've walked by this ""partially underground"" restaurant in Union Square a ton of times and finally got to get a taste of what raw cooking is like! This is the only restaurant I know in NYC that runs the gamut of serving raw, vegan, vegetarian, biodynamic, organic and sustainable food altogether. It definitely comes with a price though because all entrees are at least $24, desserts start at $12, and appetizers are $14 and aboev. The cheapest bottle of (green) wine is around $49. So all in, expect to spend at least $75pp. Nonetheless, I have to say that the meal was well worth it, esp. when dinner lasted 3 hours!
We had the Nori Rolls to start, which of course, didn't have rice in it. I thought it was just okay, although very interesting. What really blew us away were the main courses. The white corn tamales and raw cocoa mole were fantastic and my dining companion loved it so much he almost licked the plate clean! But I would argue that the vegetarian lasagna took the prize home that day. It lived up to its hype and was just so flavorful. The layers of 'pasta' was replaced with thin layers of zucchini! How ingenious! I still dream of this dish!!
The trio of chocolate dessert was fascinating but I wouldn't say it's to die for. Definitely something different since the dairy-free ice cream tasted really amazing, served with dark and bittersweet chocolate; the kind I like. I really want to try the Tiramisu next time (my favorite dessert of all times)!
One thing to note though, is that almost everything we ate there was semi-cold, although that wasn't a big deal to us. As a principle, nothing in the kitchen is cooked above 118 F to preserve nutrients and enzymes that are essential to our health and digestion. Since the concept is also vegan, no dairy or meat was served. I'm still amazed at how inventive and creative the chefs were with the cuisine. I certainly felt healthy eating this kind of food, and was even pretty darn stuffed toward the end of dinner! Highly recommended if you're into healthy (fine) dining!
01/15/2010Provided by Citysearch -
My favorite raw vegan restaurant of any I've been to in the country. Takes dishes that in the hands of less capable hands could easily be boring, and infuses them with intricate flavor combinations and subtle unexpected twists.
Great atmosphere (especially when the back garden is open), great service, great drink selection, all in all a fantastic and memorable evening!
10/03/2009Provided by Citysearch -
Than was my first and last time there. I can pay a chef to make this meal from farmers produce at my home-or better make it myself.
It was sooo laud me and my husband could not hear each other at all!!! The sound was bouncing off all walls. Too many people.
We got testing menu. What a bummer, I saw people (next to us) paying less than us and having more to eat. Portion control??? this place is more like the teaser to my poor empty belly! so for that I call it overpriced. Considering that you have to eat something after this.
if you are going to have such a meal, don't finish it with big fatty and sweet dessert! Thats silly to try to fill us up with the last course!
WE ARE NOT COMING BACK!!!!
09/03/2009Provided by Citysearch -
I have eaten here a handful of times and really enjoy the uniqueness of the food. I eat a mostly raw diet and to have this dining experience available to me is amazing. I have tried other raw restaurants but they don't compare.
Yes, it is expensive. I do understand what goes into a raw meal. It is a very time consuming process and the quality of the ingredients must be top notch. In this case, I understand but I still think they can do better by offering a few menu items that mey not be as time consuming. Also, the wines are on the pricey side.
Another option is to try Pure Juice and Takeaway which is the same owner and kitchen right around the corner.. a little more economical but very casual, not much seating...
I am giving it a 5 because I love the food and 4 would be too low a rating.
05/29/2009Provided by Citysearch -
Went here for an anniversary dinner with my wife--I should have read further into the reviews on this site before making that mistake.
We arrived enthusiastic and ready to have a great meal. The waiter recommended the tasting menu, telling us that it would be a ""very filling experience."" The first course on a ""5-course tasting menu"" was literally one bite! I'm no glutton, but I'm not anorexic either. Honestly, a one-bite course (no exaggeration) is just insulting.
While waiting for our next famine-sized portion, the wait staff seated another couple literally elbow-to-elbow with us. When I made the reservation, I had mentioned that it was our anniversary and specifically requested a romantic setting. We then proceeded to watch our neighbors get much larger portions of food, and snack on a huge bowl of olives, even though they did not order from the tasting menu and surely paid less than we did!!
Seriously, we sat there green with jealousy watching other patrons in the restaurant eat larger-than-elf-sized portions--served much sooner--and all the while I was thinking ""this must be the most expensive snack I've ever had.""
We waited at least 20 minutes for the next few bites. I know some restaurants think that slower service is good because they are not hurrying their customers out the door, but how hard is it to leave something on the table to eat? If you can't do bread, because you're a raw-food restaurant, just leave some olives like you did for the couple sitting two inches to our right. At any half-worthwhile restaurant, this would just be automatic, especially with the tasting menu.
And forget the wait staff. At a restaurant with a $70 tasting menu, you should get excellent service from experienced and attentive waiters. These guys seemed like they were just plucked from Frat Boys R Us. We didn't know what we were being served, because the kitchen picks your courses for the tasting menu. This would have been fine, except our waiters mumbled the descriptions of the food, leaving us totally in the dark.
Also, they served different menu items to my wife and me with each course. This would have been OK, too, except the courses they chose for my wife were typically about half as much food as they served me.
The tiny portions separated by interminable waits continued for over an hour during which we literally got about 7 bites of food.
Finally our last course arrived--a huge dessert. Now, why would I go to a raw food, health-oriented restaurant just to fill up on sugar and fat? But that's exactly how they structured it. So the vast majority of calories at our meal were devoid of nutrients.
If you must go here, DO NOT ORDER THE TASTING MENU!!! It is a total rip-off. Also, make emphatically clear to the wait staff that you are interested in EATING. That you came here for FOOD, to EAT not to look trendy while pretending to eat. Unless, of course, you're not interested in food. Then this place would be pretty much perfect for you.
03/09/2009Provided by Citysearch -
First, I'm not the type of eater who has a weak stomach, nor do I have any food allergies and I have never gotten sick from food in my life. I went here for dinner with some friends who highly recommended this place. For some reason, right after my meal and in the middle of my dessert I got really really sharp abdominal pains. I ended up running to the restroom and throwing up! It was so bad that I had blurred vision and couldn't get up. I wasn't able to walk or move for a good hour and a half without getting dizzy. I have no idea what in the food gave me such a violent reaction. The food wasn't prepared well since I do not have any allergies. I ended up being sick for 2 days. Beware of this place since the food is raw and if its not prepared well, you might get sick. I am never going back here again. It was expensive and they should be more stringent with the sanitation on the preparation of the food since its served raw.
01/11/2009Provided by Citysearch -
sorry to say...i went to pure food and wine to have an interesting, amazing nice dinner..i am an experienced raw foodie....at one time i ate raw for 5 yrs..now i still do..but i also eat cooked vegan. i also have created my own recipes...so i'm very familiar with the raw food world.
* the ""tamales"" were a joke...i mean give me a break..it was cashew paste in corn husk.
* the food is soooooo over priced
* the salad was tiny
* the dessert wasn't special
* a true disappointment
the service was good..no complaints there
its a cute place....to many tables...you can clearly hear conversations from across the room.
11/02/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I love well seasoned raw food so a friend suggested it for my birthday dinner. We hadn't made reservations and there weren't any seats available, so we agreed to sit at the bar. Shockingly, throughout our meal, we were asked to move our position at the bar -- not one, not two, but THREE times. Keep in mind, we weren't at a dive bar drinking $5 drinks, we were at an expensive restaurant. The stupid bar tender who was the person to ask us to move the third time explained that he was asking us out of consideration for others at the bar. I guess we were potted plants who deserved no consideration at all. This was definitely NOT $80 well-spent. Go to other delicious vegetarian joints, the overpriced food is definitely not worth all the drama.
08/01/2008Provided by Citysearch -
Friends and I went to Last night for the first time. Its extremely pricey but worth it. When I first saw the food I didn't think I'd feel full but I felt completely fulfilled. I got the zuchini flowers and I was very impressed. We also split the mint ice cream for dessert and it was unbelievable. If you aren't into raw foods or organic healthy lifestyle you might not see it the same way. I will definitely be back!!!
05/27/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I thought the food was outstanding. Yes, it was a bit pricey but I knew that beforehand, so I don't understand people complaining about the prices. We had our meal in the garden, what a beautiful setting. The wait staff was very attentive and helpful. We had the 5 course chef's choice and loved every dish that came out. Specifically, the thia wraps were fresh and the dipping sauce was wonderful. The ravioli wasn't like the real thing - it was better. The stuffed pepper and the taco were fabulous. The desserts (minted ice cream and lemon cheesecake) made me want seconds. I was afraid of leaving hungry but that didn't happen. We weren't stuffed (which is how I feel when eating the SAD) but pleasantly full, there was no stopping for pizza or something else later. The dining experince did take 2 hours, but hey, if I wanted a rushed meal then I would have gone elsewhere.
When I visit NYC again, I'll definately eat at Pure Foods again. Go and enjoy!
05/07/2008Provided by Citysearch -
I have been to PURE a few times over the years and have always been impressed. Last night changed my mind forever. First our waiter told us the wine we ordered was out of stock, but then he took about 20 minutes to get our second choice. The ""heirloom lettuces"" were bland. There was nothing special about this salad at all. For $18 I want a ?wow? in my salad. It tasted like normal lettuce with some fig sauce poured on it. Ick. We didn?t even finish it ? and it was super small! One bite was enough. The next course took forever to prepare - how long does it take to ""prepare"" raw food? It was not especially crowded but we waited for about 40 minutes before our next courses came. My friend?s ""truffled"" ravioli with asparagus had SLIVERS of white asparagus and not hint of truffle at all! My saag paneer was some spinach in a suace and a rice with radishes. The presentation was lacking and the food was super bland. We left HUNGRY and went for pizza - after spending $125 for two people! Finally, the bathroom was in horrible shape- no toilet paper and piles of paper towels all over the floor as if no one had been in there to clean up for hours! We will NOT go back again. It is overpriced and lack luster.
04/15/2008Provided by Citysearch -
Was @ PF&W earlier tonight. The asparagus sushi was more than I could ask for, and the Indian main course my waiter recommended really changed my opinions regarding Indian food. The tiramisu was delicious, so much better than the Italian original in that it was very light. My bill came out as $60 though, and I didn't order any drinks. I can understand the appetizer and main course ranging from 14-25, but the tiramisu was truly overpriced, even though it was really good. (alternative: try buchon bakery at time warner mall for dessert instead)
Oh, and as a last note, the garden is nice, but you might want to opt out when it's chilly, since they don't start those umbrella heaters til it gets really cold or something
02/11/2008Provided by Citysearch -
It's unique places like these that make me glad I live in New York City. I'm not vegan or even vegetarian, but I do value a wholesome meal...especially when it tastes like this! My best friends and I had a great time sitting in the corner of this restaurant, which was busy but still managed to have a great ambience. I got the lasagna, which I've heard is one of their signature dishes and it was so good it FELT good. All of my friends tried different things and they were all happy with their dishes. We also got a couple of great bottles of wine to go with the meal--the selection was pretty diverse. Of course, it's a pricier meal...but I think every so often this is the type of thing you absolutely have to treat yourself to.
01/11/2008Provided by Citysearch -
OMG!!! I love the food, the staff and the ambience. Everyone is friendly and more important the food is AWESOME. I am new to ""raw"" food and was not disappointed. From the Spicy Thai Wrap to the Zuchini Lasagne you can not go wrong. I should also add the patrons were just as lovely. Overall just a great place to eat. People may complain about pricing but I would implore those who look at the immediate cost to look long term. I'd rather pay for a great meal that saves the planet, tastes great and is good for you than a meal the is only about immediate gratification.
11/14/2007Provided by Citysearch -
I went here on a date and it was spectacular. The food was amazing and so was the white sangria. The service was excellent and so was the ambiance. I would definitely recommend this restaurant to vegan lovers or anyone who would like to experience the raw food cuisine. Eating at this restaurant made me realize that raw food is not just about sticking a carrot in your mouth. It's about the experience and the different ways you can eat raw but with consistency. Just be prepared to pay good money for vegetables.
My husband and I recently dined at the restaurant only to feel hungry and broke before we even left the place. We are not vegan or even vegetarian but don't mind a meatless night out every now and again. We heard about the reviews, well the only thing online was Howard Stern talking about how hot the owner was, if that says anything about the food please let me know! The only bottle of wine under 34 bucks was not so bad but forget ordering by the glass if you want to have money left over the meal. Speaking of the meal, I must have missed it on my plate. I vaguely remeber something tasting a lot like the salt we have on our table at home but did not taste the wonderful garden fresh vegetables or variety of nuts used to make ""cheese"". I could have taken the excess oil to use in my bio-diesal car and still have plenty of fuel to go far from this place. Long story short, overpriced, poor quality.
I'll state that I'm not a vegan or raw food enthusiast, so my choices are broader. That said, the meal was unimpressive and greatly overpriced. We started with the crustini and salad rolls. Both were approximately $15 each, miniscule, and lacked flavor, aside from salt. We then moved on to the lasagna and ravioli. The sundried tomato spread on the lasagna was very tasty, but the primary flavors were oil and salt. Similar for the ravioli, which was smaller than most starters at a restaurant. The sake-based cocktails had to be sent back, though the wine selection was vast. Overall, this was a rough experience and obscenely priced for the quality and quantity. Again - Just an omnivore's perspective.
10/26/2007Provided by Citysearch -
My girlfriends and I planned a once in a lifetime dinner at Pure Food and Wine because I raved about how much I loved it. The event had been planned for months because to coordinate 5 busy schedules is always a chore. Our party included two of my best friends, one of their moms and her mom?s best friend. The five of us were having a wonderful time, getting to know one-and-other, laughing and sharing stories on the patio. We were enjoying the wine, food, and the memorable night that was being created when it took a turn for the worst. The moms went to the bathroom and when they returned the manager came over and cut them off from their wine without warning. She even went as far as to pour their wine into our glasses. Yes, the moms were giggling and having a good time but they were not at all drunk or disturbing anyone. Eventually, one member of our party was so insulted that she left and the staff presented us with a $500 bill, happy that our 5th stormed off. As you would imagine, we were pretty disappointed about how that night ended because of the anticipation that went into planning that evening, plus it being my favorite restaurant in which I've brought numerous people too in the past. The worst part about it is that two of the members of our party reached out to the management to discuss the incident and they were in no way shape or form willing to make-up for the mistreatment. They sided with the staff.