Oh I've been meaning to go here for ages. You, me, dinner.
10 Soho Street, London W1D 3DN
- Tottenham Court Road Tube Station (0.2 km)
- Goodge Street Tube Station (0.5 km)
- Contact us:
020 7437 4928
3 Great Titchfield Street, Fitzrovia, London W1W 8AX
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29 reviews of Govinda's Restaurant in English
This comes as a surprise to many of my friends, as I am fiercely a carnivore and never go for vegetarian options, yet this is a vegetarian, Hare Krisna restaurant. So, WTF?
Well, basically, I am allergic to onions. Yes, I know it's not common, but it's the bane of my life. If I eat so much as a little onion in a curry, I will be sure to throw up. If I am unfortunate not to realise there is onion in the food, and I have not felt the need to throw up, I have been known to faint a few hours later. It's really really horrible. And debilitating.
Well, guess what! Hare Krishnas don't eat onions either! Apparently it's nothing to do with an allergy for them, they think that onions will give them impure sexual thoughts (or something like that). I don't really mind why they don't eat onions, I'm just thankful they don't. Which is also why I always order the Hare Krishna option when I order food on long-haul BA flights. I must say, I get funny looks from the air hostess when she sees who has ordered it, as I don't look like the sort of person who would eat Hare Krishna food. For a start, I rarely wear anything orange unless I am going to support Valencia CF in a football match. And I would rarely be doing that on a long-haul flight, I normally use RyanAir for those trips.
Anyway, back to Govindas (which is oddly a very popular name for Hare Krishna restaurants, and I have enjoyed Govindas in Dublin and in Prague, though whether they are all part of the same chain I do not know). I eat one of two things here. Either I go for the DELICIOUS lasagne (no idea what's in it, but I can't believe that food can taste this good without meat). Or I go for the all-you-can-eat Thali, which you can have refilled afterwards if you feel like a pig. That's about £8 (cheaper during the day I think) and it's well worth it if you're hungry. Trust me, you won't be hungry for much longer.
It's just so tasty, and it's so reassuring to know I can eat EVERYTHING and I don't need to go through the whole tedious rigmarole about onions because their religion bans it.
I would even consider joining their religion if it weren't for the fact that they ban garlic also. And alcohol. So I'll just be a fairweather Hare Krishna, when in Soho, and when 30,000 feet over the Atlantic Ocean.
Now, all together now:
Hare Krishna Hare Krishna
Krishna Krishna Hare Hare
Hare Rama Hare Rama
Rama Rama Hare Hare
There, didn't that make you feel better? Now, shut up and eat your thali.
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Unlimited Thali £7.95 … but you have to force yourself to eat any refills. Food is bland and salty. Added salt is toxic to life and it’s cheap, high-temperature-processed stuff. Dishes are not labelled so I ended up eating toxically-pasteurised Indian cheese thinking it was tofu. No way I would eat this kind of slop every day. Humans need unheated animal produce for optimal health … think: raw eggs, fish and milk.
Great place with very friendly and helpful staff. Food is excellent and would visit again. Beware at noon when everybody wants a piece of the action. It can get quite. Hectic and full.
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First, I'd like to say that I'm not a fan of Indian food, so my review is not the most reliable to find out more about this place. You'd better trust the rest of the Qypers below/above me. I give 4 stars because I still think it's quite good value for money and a nice place to go.
So, having said that, after one visit for lunch I'm kind of disappointed about this place. I tried the thali set meal with almost everything from the canteen-type food and it didn't seem really fresh... it was like the food had been there for a while. The rice was OK and so was the cabbage curry, but the salad was slightly stale. I can't help associating vegetarian food with freshness and deliciousness and healthiness... and this wasn't like that. After eating not very much I felt bloated and sick, rather than energised and in peace as I was expecting.
Anyway, Govinda's was worth the visit for me just for one reason: the fresh mango juice for just £1.50. I love juice and I'm not used to find such a tasty one in London for this price. I won't be going back for lunch but for sure to have juice/lassi and to try the desserts. I must add also that I loved the steel plates and cups and the staff was really nice and helpful :)
How I wish that this place was near where I live.
This is traditional satvic food from India, as made by Hare Krishnas. And so it is blessed food.
It feels so incredibly nourishing and when I get the chance to eat here I feel the benefits for a while afterwards.
Satvic food is not heavily spiced by and large, so do not worry about things being too full of chilli.
The restaurant is basic with a counter you take a tray along, like at a canteen. I believe the food is likely to be eggless as well and I mention that, because some prefer that.
No alcohol here - for spiritual reasons.
A great shop next door where you can buy some things from India, such as chyawanprash, which I can never find anywhere else. Chyawanprash is a sort of spicy paste, sweet and lots of cardamon etc. to ward off colds etc.
I wouldn't call the restaurant cheap but I feel you get good value for money and the thali is delicious!!!!!
While it's more staff canteen that restaurant, this place is a handy one to know about if you're in the area and need a wholesome, filling feast without breaking the bank.
Run by the Buddhists from the centre next door, you'll find no booze or caffeine, but you will be able to stuff yourself with fresh vegetarian goodness for less than a fiver. As the others have said, make sure you save room for pudding, and keep this one up your sleeve when shopping on Oxford Street.
Compared to the nearby bland (and hideously overpriced) coffee shops, this is a godsend; far more friendly, laidback and suitable for the cash-strapped and heath-conscious!
I just been to this restaurant and the food is really nice. I had burger and salted lassi - :)
They have blessed priests outside the restaurant chanting hare rama hare krishna and just dancing to release the stress and pains in life. The scene is really beautiful.
Recommended especially for Krishna Fans.
Delicious and eminently affordable vegetarian food in central London. A large thali with everything costs £7.95 and that allows for seconds, if you have the room (you'll be hard pressed), but one could easily have a wholesome and filling lunch for under a fiver.
The space is clean and cheery, with a niche dedicated to Lord Krishna and Sri Prabupada, the founder of the Hare Krishna movement, and there is soothing Krishna devotional music playing in the background. It's nothing fancy, but that's not what you're looking for if you're considering dining here. There are plenty of tables, even at lunch when a bit of a queue (fast moving) forms. Most people seem to take away.
The restaurant is run by and for members of the International Society of Krishna Consciousness (aka Hare Krishnas) - not Buddhists. Preparing food for others is an act of devotion for members. The temple is next door.
For cheap, vegetarian food in the centre of London you can't go far wrong with Govindas.
Run by Buddhists you can expect a warm welcome and a right-on clientele.
Don't come looking for a fine dining experience or for frills, but do if you're looking for tasty, wholesome food a stones throw from Centre Point then this is the place
Centrally located in Soho, great vegetarian food. Its worth going just for the desserts. All cakes and puddings are eggless. Food is freshly prepared. This is a cafeteria for devotees of the Iskon temple attached hence no alcohol on the premises. Atmosphere is relaxed. Everytime I have visited I have shared a table with really interesting people. Great place to stimulate conversation.
Very unassuming place, both inside and out, but boy is this a fantastic vegetarian Indian. I’m certainly no expert in Indian food, but having spent a few months eating my way around India I’d like to think I have a reasonable grasp of the “real deal”, and this place is the most authentic Indian I’ve had outside India - even down to the steel water cups and trays.
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