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Friday, December 4, 2020

Citizen Eatery Review: The Perfect Time for Breakfast is Always

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Breakfast all day, a full bar, and a space that’s perfect for all types of crowds, vegan or not. Citizen Eatery is a much-loved health-conscious restaurant with everything a vegan could want.

Always breakfast. Two words, when next to each other, that are bound to make any vegan foodie a little weak in the knees. Especially when that breakfast includes vegan favourites like omelettes and scrambles made from JUST Egg, flapjacks, and the epic sandwiches that brunch dreams are made of.

Citizen Eatery, a popular vegan restaurant in Austin, Texas, is precisely where you’ll find this next-level ‘Always Breakfast’, served alongside a host of other wholesome vegan offerings, each day of the week. The restaurant describes itself as a “bright, flavor filled, health-conscious cafe & full bar”, and it’s got the food and atmosphere to match.

Perhaps a lesser-known fact about the spot is that it opened as a vegetarian restaurant in late 2016, with animal products initially on the menu. In 2018, following a successful week of trialling a vegan menu in partnership with plant-based event organisation Planted, Citizen Eatery decided to go vegan forever. 

Now, the well-liked restaurant is among the best spots for plant-based fare in the very vegan-friendly Austin, with high-quality food, an inviting space, and service that leaves very little to be desired!

The Vibe

Citizen Eatery’s spot in the Brentwood neighbourhood of north Austin has simply got the right atmosphere. The restaurant is appropriate for all crowds and all occasions, and, despite being a bar, Citizen Eatery is kid-friendly.

Inside the Restaurant

Upon walking in the door, you’re greeted with an aesthetic bound to inspire your own home’s decor plans. The restaurant has the simple-yet-wholly-Instagram-worthy vibe entirely figured out. A bright, modern dining room welcomes diners and effortlessly tempts guests to stay awhile.

Whether you’re looking for a quick relaxed meal, a new date night spot, or a go-to vegan hangout for your brunch crew, Citizen Eatery has the look and feel of a restaurant that knows how to embody the “casual, contemporary” restaurant-style with ease.

Sweet, Friendly Service

A commonly-held belief is that Austinites are friendly, laid-back people, and at Citizen Eatery, you’ll certainly find that to be the case. Service is generally quick, even in busier times, and servers are always happy to give helpful menu recommendations and answer questions you didn’t know you had.

The Food

Citizen Eatery’s fare is health-focused yet manages to be pleasantly indulgent, no matter whether you’re choosing from the menu’s Featured Entrees, Starters and Salads, Shareables, or (of course) Always Breakfast options.

Your All-Day Breakfast Cravings, Sorted

There’s no such thing as a bad dish at Citizen Eatery. Easily one of the best parts of the restaurant is the Always Breakfast menu, which offers brunchy favourites at all times of the day, each day of the week. (No more waiting for weekend-only brunch trips!)

The restaurant is one of the few in Austin that offers JUST Egg, making it a wise choice to order either the incredible Citizen Scramble or the Chorizo Omelette to enjoy the restaurant’s inventive use of this star ingredient.

Other Can’t-Miss Eats and Drinks

Outside of breakfast, get Citizen’s Pecan Pesto Beets: a uniquely delicious shareable that can easily be eaten by one ambitious person in 5 minutes or less. The handheld option of choice is the Pulled Plant BBQ Sandwich, followed closely by the flavorful Chik’n Tacos. The restaurant recommends the perfect drink pairings for most non-breakfast menu options, from Austin Amber Ale as the perfect accompaniment for the Citizen Burger to a Twisted X Ale going flawlessly with the classic B.L.T.

If you enjoy alcohol, the vegan spot’s well-stocked bar is sure to satisfy, and even if you don’t, a fresh mocktail, seasonal kombucha, or the fresh Super Detox Green juice ensures that there’s something for everyone.

What about dessert? Citizen Eatery’s enticing dessert menu shows off the restaurant’s support of other Austin vegan businesses, like seasonal cheesecake from Dolce Seven and sundaes, floats, and shakes made with Sweet Ritual ice cream.

The Cost of Health-Conscious Plant Food

While prices aren’t by any means outrageous, you can certainly expect to pay a bit more for this high-quality vegan food. The average cost of a breakfast dish comes in at around $12, and “Handhelds” (think burgers, sandwiches, and nachos) average at close to $13. Portions for the prices are just about fair. While you might not have a ton of leftovers to take home, you’ll leave Citizen Eatery with a satisfied smile and a decently full belly. 

Current Restaurant Operations

Like all businesses, Citizen Eatery has had to adjust its operations in the face of Covid-19. At the start of the pandemic, the restaurant offered the Citizen Family Pack, which offered a variety of hard-to-find fruit and vegetable staples at an affordable price.

The vegan restaurant offers takeout, Doordash delivery, and curbside pickup for ultimate flexibility. As of June 1, Citizen’s dining room reopened at 50% seating capacity to allow for safe distancing while letting hungry plant-eaters once again enjoy the restaurant’s dine-in experience, albeit with ample precautions in place.

A Near-Perfect Rating

Overall, Citizen Eatery is a much-loved vegan restaurant in Austin for all the right reasons. With a 4.5 star rating on Google from nearly 900 reviews and a top rating on HappyCow, it’s clear that folks can’t get enough of Citizen’s creative approach to meatless dining. 

The price point of menu items for the amount of food given is the only aspect keeping the restaurant from an absolute perfect score, but with an overall 4.5 rating that comes from its perpetual breakfast offerings, the beautiful dining atmosphere, and pleasantly friendly service, it’s sure to become one of your favourites.

Safiyyah
Safiyyah Bazemorehttps://www.safiyyah.co
Safiyyah is a freelance writer, vegan foodie, and market research strategist who calls the U.S. west coast home. Apart from writing and eating, she's wildly passionate about building vegan community by hosting local 'eatups' and by sharing her love of vegan baking with everyone that crosses her path. Safiyyah is also a yogi, herbalist, and a nomadic soul on a mission to make the world a brighter, more compassionate place.