Restaurant: The Foundation Lounge
Last visited: Sept. 16, 09
Area: Vancouver – Main Street
2301 Main Street
Price Range: $10 or less
1: Poor 2: OK 3: Good 4: Very good 5: Excellent 6: Tres Excellent!!
Ambiance: 2…it looks like a dive, but it suits the image, so it’s ok!
- Famous for their nachos (Small $8) its huge!! – only served for dinner
- Flavourful vegetarian food, nice and hearty
- Crowded, line-ups
- Open late
- Attracts 20-30 age group
- Retro feel, funky, laid back, liberal revolutionary quotes on the walls
** Recommendation: Nachos, Sesame Society, Sesamum Satay Salad
The Foundation has been around forever! I’ve been here a few times with non-vegetarians, and we have all gone back on our own to try new things. So that’s a good thing! It serves all vegetarian food in a casual atmosphere, and most of it is really good! It’s filling too because the portions are quite large and the flavours are bold. However they repeat a lot of their ingredients and sauces, so everything kind of tastes the same. It’s kind of a variation of the same ingredients – I found things distinctly sweet or distinctly savoury – I’d prefer more of a balance. If it’s sweet its mango/papaya based and if its savoury its sesame/peanut based. I’m not a vegetarian, but I do enjoy vegetarian food and The Foundation is still a great place to check out. Nothing fancy or gourmet, it is what it is – what it looks like on the outside is what it is in the inside.
On the table:
The infamous nachos – this is only a small, they’re huge!
- **Nachos 5/6
- The small is big enough for 3-4 people! Its huge, and that’s part of the hype.
- Huge plate, hot from the oven with tortilla chips covered in melted cheddar cheese black beans, and corn. Forget all the other toppings, these nachos are simple – yet delicious. To add guacamole is $2, but it’s worth it because they give you a lot, but I bet it’s from a container. You get a generous amount of sour cream, salsa, and guacamole – you’ll have left over.
- The picture, doesn’t really show how big it is. (Side note: The size of the condiments are inconsistent because the condiment dishes are all random – so it’s kind of luck of the draw) But either way you’ll always have enough. What’s also great about these nachos is that the chips are well spread out in a nice layer, so each chip is covered with cheese. They don’t just mound the tortilla chips so that the bottom layers don’t have any toppings. They only serve them during dinner – so don’t miss out!
- Sweet Basil Curry Soup 1/6
- Really disappointing, but it looked and smelled so good!!! It had so much potential. It was hearty with potatoes and full of veggies….but not good at all. It was served luke warm from this crock pot set up in the front. It was bland and not flavourful at all. I actually sent it back, and I rarely ever do that.
- Mingling Yams 3/6
- This is a fluffy yam dip – a yam puree. Again you get a lot! It comes with warm pita which they call “horizontal bread” – it’s like a flatbread. It also comes with tortilla chips. The dip is savoury and sweet at the same time – I found it more sweet though, but then again its made up of yams. It was enjoyable, but not a must or something I would crave.
- **Sesamum Salad 6/6
- This is a warm sesame satay veggie salad. It’s greens topped with sauteed veggies like big chunks of broccoli, firm brown and sticky tofu, and chick peas. You definitely get your needed protein. It’s hearty and filling and just tasty. I love the sesame sauce! The cold salad with the warm veggies makes for a perfect meal.
- Upper East Side 4/6
- Black beans and mangoes served on rice.
- It’s .75 cents to change the rice to quinoa, and I think its worth it. The mangoes are from a can, but its ok because its only $7 with taxes. Again, its on the sweeter side, so I would order it with something savoury to break it up, or the flavour gets a little boring. The mangoes create a natural sauce, and the beans are a great thickening agent so its not runny and your rice or quinoa won’t taste dry.
- Molton Tofu 5/6
- Broccoli and tofu served on rice.
- They say it’s spicy, but I didn’t think it was. They kind of showcase it in the appetizer section – but I found it more of an entree. You can order is as part of their appetizer platter – which is weird, because its not finger food. Again it was big and filling. Big pieces of broccoli and they use the firm brown tofu – which makes this dish hearty. I enjoyed this more than the Upper East Side. The sauce is a sesame-like sauce so the flavours and textures are nice and bold.
- Tight Spin 2.5/6
- Grain fed spinach, pear, sheep’s cheese, sunflower seeds and a lime & mango dressing.
- This salad was ok. I wish they had used a pear that wasn’t as ripe. It made the salad a bit mushy, and the crunchiness you want in a salad was lost. The sheep’s cheese was also really strong, but went well with the pear. The dressing is a thicker dressing – not a vinaigrette. The dressing is heavy on the mango flavour – I think they puree canned mangoes to make it – so again the salad was a bit sweet for me. The pears have a natural sweetness so I think they could have gone more tart on the dressing to break up the flavours.
- Mango Forte 2/6
- Broccoli, zucchini, mango, and jalapenos in coco sauce tossed with round pasta aka rotini.
- Again not spicy, more sweet. The mangoes make the sauce again, so you don’t taste the coconut very much. It almost tasted like a sweeter version of the mango-lime dressing from the salad. They don’t skimp on the ingredients though, but again I needed some savoury to break up the flavours. Texture is there, but it needs something savoury.
- **Sesame Society 5/6
- Broccoli, zucchini, carrots, cauliflower, firm brown tofu, and maple tahini sauce. Served on quinoa and spinach.
- This had the balance of sweet and salty that I was looking for! It’s because it had a maple tahini sauce – this was one of my favs. A great variety of vegetables, and big pieces too, so they don’t overcook and get mushy. The spinach kind of wilts underneath the layer of hot veggies and this comes with quinoa so it’s a great deal at $9.75. I would go back for this!
- My Sugar Pie 1/6
- The say it’s their best dessert – originates from Quebec. They offer a vegan version as well.
- This was WAY too sweet – and I have a major sweet tooth!! I need dessert after a meal and this was uber sweet. I’m sure it’s how it’s supposed to be, but I just didn’t enjoy it. A couple bites and your sweet tooth is satisfied…and hurting.