Good Karma Vegetarian/Vegan Restaurant

By: Nancy Baker Faul
If you love the vegetarian or vegan lifestyle, Good Karma is for you. Recently opened at 412-C Pass Road, the quaint diner serves food in a brand new way. When guests arrive they are immediately given herbal tea, a bowl of soup called ‘Dahl’ and a fresh salad. All the ingredients in the dishes served have been grown especially for the restaurant in ISKCON New Talavana in Carriere, Mississippi. ISKCON New Talavana is a farm, and the Krishna Temple is part of the International Society for Krishna Consciousness.
Café owner, Maharani Berg, often travels to her homeland in India where the influence for her recipes originated. After you have tasted your Dahl and delicious salad, you are treated to a daily lunch plate that always includes specially flavored rice and a wonderful mix of healthy international food.
All the food is plated by Krishna members who work at the restaurant. All profits from the restaurant go to Food for Life. FFL is the world’s largest vegetarian/vegan food relief program. The program has provided over 150 million free meals in over 60 countries since 1974.
Manager, Beverly Cobb, is looking forward to opening a second location in downtown Ocean Springs, the first week of August 2011. “I will be so glad when we can open our new location because it will have a commercial kitchen. We will be able to cook and serve more easily. Right now, the Gulfport location has its food cooked at the Krishna farm in Carriere and then brought to the restaurant daily,” said Cobb.
Each meal is carefully prepared from vegetables and fruits grown only on the farm. Every Sunday the farm opens its doors to anyone who wishes to taste their food and hear their message of Krishna Consciousness. Approximately 100 are fed each Sunday at New Talavana. Worship begins at noon followed by Bhagavad-Gita classes at 1:30 p.m. The Free Vegan Feast, known as Prasad am, is served around 2 p.m. There is no need to attend worship or classes to partake in the meal, but everyone is welcome to do so.
Good Karma also carries gifts that range from healthy snacks, pure honey from the farm and beaded hair adornments, to homemade organic soaps and cheese made at the farm.
Suratani Berg, the owners’ daughter, is often the only server in the restaurant. She effortlessly handles the busy lunch time eatery, moving gracefully from one table to another. Catering is available from the Good Karma staff and you will see workers dressed in traditional Krishna garb, which adds to the rather unusual dining experience.
The meal is topped off by a fresh dessert that holds true to the vegetarian/vegan style. The best part of Good Karma is the service with a smile and the fact that you get the drink, soup, salad, plated meal and dessert for only $6.50!!!
Good Karma Café, Natural Foods Grocery and Gift Shop are open Tuesday through Thursday from 11:30 to 3:00 and 11:30 til? on Friday and Saturday. Here’s a hint: GO EARLY!!! The restaurant only makes about 100 meals per day and when the food is gone they close the doors. You can call Good Karma at 22-575-9102.

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