Copper Branch: A Vegan Restaurant Review

I’m so grateful that there are vegan restaurants. When we first went vegan, we had one small locally owned vegan restaurant, and while it was good, it was very vegan – if you know what I mean. No tacos, burgers, pizza, or anything like that. It was very healthy food and healthy desserts and the entire menu came out of a very health-conscious vegan’s mind.

Now there are many more choices. We have a favorite vegan pizza joint, vegan donut place, vegan Thai food place, vegan health food place, vegan comfort food place, and more. I’ll write about the other places soon, but today I want to talk about the Copper Branch on Jasper Avenue in Edmonton.

There used to be two Copper Branch’s in Edmonton, but the one on the south side closed down. It’s not surprising to me.

Here’s what one person said about it closing…

byu/yegtina from discussion

Copper Branch Offers Some Desirable Choices

Copper Branch has power bowls, fries, burgers, nachos, and breakfast stuff like wraps and breakfast sandwiches. In theory, their menu looks really good, which attracts customers. However, I have a hard time believing that they get a lot of repeat customers due to a few important things.

The biggest issue is that they are expensive, which is like most vegan places. But, the difference between them and other places is you don’t get what you pay for.

Here’s one of our most recent disappointments at Copper Branch. In fact, this one was so disappointing that I wrote to Copper Branch to give feedback and the responses I got back showed just how much customer satisfaction matters.

My husband ordered the Shiitake Teriyaki Burger. It’s supposed to have shiitake mushroom, teriyaki and tamari sauce, sriracha coleslaw, and garlic aioli. And here’s what it’s supposed to look like as opposed to what it looked like.

shitake mushroom copper branch comparsion (1)

It was pretty pathetic. The amount of shiitake mushrooms and coleslaw in the advertised picture is obviously not what you get. And while it may look at least like a big bun in the picture, it wasn’t. The plate is a very small plate, which makes the close-up of the burger look big. I would compare the size to a McDonald’s hamburger.

This is how all their food turns out. The advertised pictures are exaggerations of what you will get. They look great, which makes you want to order the food, but we have never got an item that lived up to the menu picture.

The Shiitake Burger was the worst, though.

When I wrote to Copper Branch to talk about this, they wrote me back telling me what was in the burger and that they hoped I have a better experience in the future.

I’m so sorry to hear that you didn’t enjoy your Shiitake burger.

This burger is on a Sweet Potato bun, with sriracha coleslaw, garlic aioli, and our shiitake teriyaki.

We’re so sorry that it didn’t live up to your expectations, hopefully we can make this up to you in the future.

I wrote back letting them know that I understood what it is in the burger. I was just trying to give feedback to let them know that it’s essentially a turn-off to get something so pathetic compared to what you are expecting. They wrote back:

We appreciate your feedback, and once again apologize that our shiitake burger didn’t live up to its photo.

At least they are now acknowledging that it doesn’t live up to the photo, even though they had not mentioned that before. But, still, they do not care that it was so poorly represented. It’s a reflection of how much they care about their product, in my opinion.

In short, I don’t expect them to talk to the restaurant on Jasper Avenue and ensure that the products live up to the expectations of the customers, so if you go to Copper Branch and get a shiitake burger, expect a tiny little burger for $10.

The Taste Of Copper Branch’s Food Is A Hit And Miss

Some of the food at Copper Branch is not that good.

For instance, the avocado toast looks delicious in the picture, but it’s very small, doesn’t look like the picture, and it’s lacking in flavor. Even with salt, the flavor wasn’t there. I can make much better avocado toast at home for much less.

You can get a way better iced coffee from Cinnaholic – a vegan cinnamon bun place on Whyte Avenue.

The poutine is good, but they just use Daiya shreds for it. The gravy is pretty good though. But the fries are just soggy fries that could be much better.

The Galaxy Burger which has a roasted Portobello mushroom, zucchini, caramelized onions, provolone cheeze, lettuce, garlic aïoli is pretty good, but again it doesn’t look like the picture they advertise.

They make a lot of items that you could make at home. For instance, the breakfast sandwiches use Just Egg, and you could easily make them at home, except on some of them they have something called the ‘copper sauce’ which is pretty good. But, you can easily make your own sauce at home. For the price, it would be a smarter idea.

The Customer Service Is Poor

The food doesn’t live up to what it promises. That’s always disappointing. We go to restaurants to try something we see because it looks and sounds good… and we want to try what they are advertising.

But, the poor customer service at Copper Branch is the big drawback for me – and it matters a lot. I have always been someone who will not support poor service. I just don’t think businesses should get rewarded for bad service. I DO, however, think businesses should get rewarded for good service and I will go out of my way to support them if they make me feel like a valued customer.

At Copper Branch, it seems to go like this: “Don’t like the food? Oh well! Sorry about your luck. Try again and maybe it will be better next time!”

That’s a very poor strategy for a vegan food establishment to adopt. Because we have so many vegan options in Edmonton now, retaining your customers is important… or you could shut down! (Whoops, one branch already did shut down!)

You think they would want to, first, make food that lives up to the advertising and, second, ensure customers are happy after a bad experience. Losing a customer means zero revenue going forward, whereas, maintaining just one happy customer could equal thousands and thousands of dollars earned from them and their recommendtations. But from their responses to me, this isn’t the case. And because of that, we won’t be back to Copper Branch.

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