Review: Vegan Thanksgiving at Buy the Book Cafe, Daegu

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Last Updated on February 9, 2018 by Christine Kaaloa

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Fearless organizer, Matt holds out awesome vegan Thanksgiving dinners– something to be thankful for!

I have a bad habit of underestimating Daegu.

These days, I’ve discovered a small community and niche spots where I can get together with like-minded people for vegan food, art and yoga workouts.

Buy the Book Cafe is a vegetarian cafe in Daegu

Nestled in one of the crazy offshoot alleys of Daegu’s Bandwoldang and perched on the 4th floor of a building housing a Mr. Pizza  sits Buy the Book Cafe.   It’s an independent bookstore owned by a young Canadian-Korean family (Sandy, Yatren and their daughter). The cafe is always doused with a pleasant whiff of healthy organic home cooking, served up with a no-nonsense bohemian flair; best of all– its menu is mostly vegetarian.

The cafe is designed with comfy sofas, minimal decor and bookshelves of traded English books for cheap . It’s a gathering place for expats and English teachers, who want to feel normal for a bit, speak English and eat vegetarian food with a slight Korean twist.

Power Yoga and artsy venues on the weekends

Every Sunday they hold yoga classes (my friend Megan runs this) and special events, for foreigners to congregate and mingle. They have events like documentary film night, theater and live music performances by western expats; and from what I’ve heard from excited expats… clothes swapping days!  Western sizes can be challenging to find in Korea, so this allows slightly larger westerners a chance to refresh their wardrobe.


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Thanksgiving meals for vegetarians and meat lovers

This Thanksgiving was a  treat for us all. Drawn out by friends, Buy the Book Cafe was a perfect place for celebrating expat friendships and good eating.

Sandy prepared both, meat and meatless options. The vegetarian meal included Tofurkey, mashed potatoes with gravy, bread stuffing, edamame (you wouldn’t believe how hard edamame is to find in Korea!) and pumpkin pie for only 15,000W (approx $13)!  All the things I was drooling over while teaching my classes about Thanksgiving.

Getting to Buy the Book Cafe

 Get off at Banwoldang station and take exit 14. walk past the YMCA on your left. Banwoldang area will be on your right. Just look for the stores and the bright lights.  Downtown Daegu is difficult to find your way through as there are no street numbers or signs. Most expats and locals try to find locations based on sight, memory and landmarks. It’s a block from Billibow (a popular expat bar, so I’d ask an expat if you see them). Keep going until you see Mr. Pizza (there’s a Baskin Robbins across the street), walk up the stairs to the 4th Floor.


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Buy the Book Cafe (Vegetarian Cafe)

Facebook:  profile here
Hours: Open weekends: Friday 3 pm- 8pm and Saturday/ Sunday 1pm-9pm

Related Posts

Daegu, Food Tours, Reviews, Vegetarian Life


  • Nathan Hanson
    March 15, 2011 1:46 pm

    So glad I was researching blogs tonight! I’m moving to Seoul in May and have been a pescatarian for 10+ years but was getting intimidated by lack of available options shown online and feedback from friends recently returned. You just put those fears at ease, much thanks, take care and keep up the great blogging.

    • @Nathan: If you’re moving to Seoul, you’ll have a tad bit of an easier time with your diet. Seoul has a wider range of restaurant options than the rest of Korea and they have places like Subway, Costco & Loving Hut as well. Also, if you’re a pescatarian (fish, right?)then, OMG– you have all of Korea for your tastebuds to explore! 😉

  • Oh I’m so glad you found a place to have Thanksgiving–especially a vegan one. What are the odds in Korea??? Do you find it a bit ironic that you’re finding all these cool places and connections in Daegu NOW, after you’ve decided to move on to Seoul when your contract is up?

  • When I saw the title, I thought ‘that’s a really specific book there…’ then I realized you were talking about a PLACE 🙂 Nice post.

    • @Gray: …I KNOW! Like what’s up with ‘dat?! Where did all these yoga & vegetarian people come from all of a sudden? Why weren’t they here when I was living off of yogurts everyday?
      @Chris: I forgot to add “Cafe”. Hope that helps. Sometimes I think finding the right title name is a job in itself!

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