The name “Madal” reminds many Budapesters first of all of good coffee. Both of the Madal Cafés – one in Hollán Ernő utca and the other at Ferenciek tere – are among the hottest addresses in terms of specialty coffee, and they have already been awarded the Hungarian Barista Prize, among other things. A few months ago Madal opened another branch. Madal Food in Alkotmány utca offers not only hot drinks but also vegan pasta, soups and salads, all garnished by a pinch of harmony and peace of mind.

Inspired by Sri Chinmoy’s peace doctrine

The company, which has been operating in Budapest since 2013, applies the peace philosophy of Indian guru Sri Chinmoy. The teacher born in 1931 in the former East Bengal, who died in New York in 2007, believed that meditation brings out the inner potential of a person and shows the way to endless joy, inner peace and eternal truth.

He taught his students to accept the world, and show respect and tolerance towards other ways of living and other religions. During his young years Chinmoy got the nickname Madal, after the hand drum, due to his energetic attitude. This is the name the Budapest gastronomic business chose to use too.

In its third branch Madal is trying to create an island of peace in the hectic flow of urban life. When you visit the restaurant near the Parliament, you will be greeted by a bright room equipped with light-coloured wooden furniture. The space is divided by a counter into two sections, a café and a restaurant part, even if this separation is softened by the application of a uniform design.

On the walls are colourful paintings and photographs of Chinmoy, and posters with his motivating words such as: “A moment of peace can and will save the world” or “Love and you will be loved.” Those interested will find books about meditation on the shelves. These are also written by the Indian guru.


Peace, joy, past

While they mainly serve coffee at the café counters – which is mostly running from the fully-automated La Marzocco machine, but sometimes it’s prepared in the manual cold dripper Aeropress – the guests can choose from a daily changing selection of pasta dishes and soups.

Sri Chinmoy was a passionate representative of the vegan approach. According to his teachings, you can only keep your body and soul pure if you denounce eating meat. Thus they only serve dishes without animal products at Madal too.

Luckily there are so many varied vegan options for pasta dishes that you will not feel as if something is missing. The cheese made of vegetable proteins lacks nothing compared to the version made of animal proteins, and the sauces are refined by using many healthy vegetables instead of minced meat. The recipes at Madal are mostly inspired by Italian classics such as carbonara, arrabiata or pasta formaggio but they also frequently use Indian spices.

You can place your order at the counter, where you can choose from three pasta variations and one soup – and once that is done, you are ready to sit back and relax in one of the sofas, chairs or bar stools. The short waiting time until your food is served allows your glance and thoughts to wander around a little.

Maybe a few guests even manage to sink into a meditative state – surrounded by so many posters with wisdom. However, even if you don’t meditate, you can still enjoy a good meal here.



This restaurant is a great place for everyone committed to vegetarian and vegan cuisine. Those who consider a steak or at least a little bit of minced meat as an essential part of a hearty meal will surely break out in bitter tears upon glancing at the menu. Omnivores who do not mind a little bit of healthy change will find an easy opportunity to become acquainted with vegan food. After all, you can’t go very wrong with pasta.

Fans of simple, straightforward design and followers of the “Third Wave Coffee Movement”, with slightly eccentric coffee requests, will also feel good at this Madal branch, and for this reason the café area is often populated by a few modern work nomads.

Thanks to its moderate prices Madal is also an appropriate choice for the lunch break.


Madal Food

Budapest, District V, 4 Alkotmány utca

Open Monday to Saturday 11.30 to 19.00, Thursdays and Saturdays until 17.00

Reservations at (+36) 70 269-2673



Small portion pasta: HUF 1190

Large portion pasta: HUF 1490

Soup: HUF 590

Loading Conversation

The news that made headlines

The Brief History of the Week

Geschrieben von BT

Presenting in one concise package the week’s most important and fascinating national stories,…

ComiX Coffee in District V

Inmates running the asylum?

Geschrieben von Attila Leitner

Briton Ben Innes became the very definition of cool on Tuesday. In case you missed this, the…

Protests, no apologies as government-teachers dispute widens

Fight of the roundtables

Geschrieben von BT

The civil public education platform representing the teachers’ movement, which calls itself an…