Vegging Out: La Esquina Vegetariana

UPDATE: La Esquina Vegetariana has moved to a new location — Carrera 11 No. 69-26

I’m no vegetarian, but recently I’ve opted to reduce my intake of meat, especially beef. On top of this, I’ve also taken a pledge to be a “flexitarian” this month (no red meat – fish and chicken is ok, but less is better). Thanks to this, I now realize that Bogotá has quite an abundance of vegetarian restaurants.

A lot of them are downtown or in areas I don’t generally frequent, but there are about 4 that I’ve been meaning to try, one of them being La Esquina Vegetariana in Chapinero.

My dining partner accepted my lunch invitation even after I disclosed the fact that our destination was a vegetarian restaurant. Fortunately, the experience was pretty good so I didn’t feel guilty about dragging him along on a cold and rainy afternoon.

We were offered a few choices for lunch but in the end we went for the lunch special: to start, a very generous bowl of arracacha soup (a root vegetable similar to yucca). Our main course included brown rice, chickpeas with protein/wheat gluten (a.k.a seitan), salad, and a grilled wheat gluten pattie. Dessert was half a candied fig, and to drink I had fresh watermelon juice and my partner had soy milk. When it started pouring outside we decided to stay a little longer and enjoy a steaming cup of agua aromática.

The portions were very generous and a lot tastier than I had expected. I had never tried what they call gluten or seitan but the way they prepared it and seasoned it was actually pretty great. They also sell these kinds of products at the restaurant in case you want to take some meat substitutes home.

The people watching was pretty good too, which is an important point in my opinion. During our late weekday lunch we were joined by college students, a middle-aged woman dining alone, a table full of employees from the tattoo store nearby (lots of body art to admire), and a hipster or two.

After this first good experience at one of Bogotá’s vegetarian restaurants I am really looking forward to trying some more and I’m glad to now have at least one option for a quick, healthy, sustainable,meat-free, and satisfying lunch.

Oh yes, and affordable – the entire meal only cost $7,500 (about $4 dollars).

On your way out, stop by the bakery on the first floor (Pan de Nobles) which also sells ingredients and a variety of whole wheat breads, rolls (mogollas) and cookies.

La Esquina Vegetariana

Calle 61 # 9-03 (2nd floor)

Tel: 235.7418

If you find yourself in the northern part of the city, La Esquina Vegetariana has another location called La Mesa Vegetariana located at: Calle 85A # 24-14.

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9 Responses to Vegging Out: La Esquina Vegetariana

  1. Diana, I love your blog, and as a vegetarian visiting Bogota, I especially love this entry! Hope to check this place out during my visit. It sounds great. I had no idea about your background in culinary studies and gastronomy. Now it all makes sense…

    • bogotaeats says:

      Hi! Glad you like the blog! You have to let me know if you try any restaurants or ingredients that I should write about. Hope you are enjoying your visit and I may be seeing your around soon….

  2. Tana says:

    I really enjoy reading your blog. We visit my husband’s family in Bogota about 4 times a year, so I am truly looking forward to adding this one to my ever-growing list of restaurants we will try. Thanks!!!

    • bogotaeats says:

      Thank you so much! I hope you enjoy this place on your next visit and with 4 visits a year you’ll be able to try all the new restaurants that seem to be popping up everywhere. Let me know if you try any outstanding ones that deserve a visit and a mention. Cheers….

  3. ekamati108 says:

    Girl, please please please text me when you are trying out these places. I went to a great veggie place for lunch last week by the ministry of agriculture, very similar to what you describe here. I think we need to talk Mike into a bogota bike tour of veggie restaurants, just to know where they all are. Keep posting. I love your blog.

  4. Izzy says:

    Nice blog! In case you’re looking for another vegetarian place to try, go to Felipan (they’ve got a page on Facebook), it’s on calle 51 con 9. The place is really small though, but the food is pretty great, and you’ve got to try their baked goods and chocolates as well!

    • Hi Izzy! Thanks for the tip…I’ve been following Felipan on FB for a while and their lunch specials sound great! Haven’t had a chance to get down there yet…but I will soon! Thanks again! D

  5. Kara says:

    I stumbled on your blog, and am loving it! I’m headed for Colombia in just a little over a week. Thanks for all the great info!

    • Thanks! I’m glad you found the blog before your trip. If you have any other questions please don’t hesitate to drop me a line. Always happy to help when it comes to food!

      Cheers

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