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Vegetarian friendly restaurants in NYC


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Wifey and I will be heading to NYC to visit the Tim Burton MOMA exibit. I was wondering what restaurants we should look at that are vegetarian or vegetarian friendly. My wife wants dim sum, but that might be asking a bit too much.

Thanks for the advice!!

Dan

"Salt is born of the purest of parents: the sun and the sea." --Pythagoras.

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(1) Do the restaurants have to be in Midtown? If not, which locations do you favor?

(2) What's your price range?

(3) Do you have any cuisine preferences, other than dim sum?

(4) Do you have any other preferences (decor, etc., etc.)?

Once you answer those questions, people will be able to give you useful recommendations.

Michael aka "Pan"

 

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(1) Do the restaurants have to be in Midtown? If not, which locations do you favor?

(2) What's your price range?

(3) Do you have any cuisine preferences, other than dim sum?

(4) Do you have any other preferences (decor, etc., etc.)?

Once you answer those questions, people will be able to give you useful recommendations.

1. Midtown is preferred, but iIt can be anywhere in Manhattan, as long as it is close to a subway stop.

2. I would prefer to keep it under $25 per plate, but I might go $10 higher if it is really good.

3. No other preferences. We like to explore. :)

4. No other preferences... We are very flexible.

Edited by DanM (log)

"Salt is born of the purest of parents: the sun and the sea." --Pythagoras.

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Pongal on Lexington is good for vegetarian Indian.

There's a couple of places in Chinatown that do decent mock-meat, but the best one I remember is actually in Brooklyn--probably going to be out of the way for you.

I worked at Rockefeller Center for a year, and my memory is that midtown is not veg-friendly generally.

"I think it's a matter of principle that one should always try to avoid eating one's friends."--Doctor Dolittle

blog: The Institute for Impure Science

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For South Indian, I haven't tried Pongal lately but do remember liking it when I did. I love Saravanaas - if you go, you'll do best by getting idli, masala dosas/utthapams, and dessert - and Chennai Garden. Madras Mahal is also good, but perhaps a cut below Saravanaas and Chennai Garden.

Almost any of the recommended Italian restaurants make vegetarian items. For example, Lupa has excellent vegetable appetizers, and you could easily make a good meal out of them with or without a vegetarian primo, and dessert. (Lupa is not THAT close to a subway, but you didn't say how far you're willing to walk! To most Manhattanites of normal mobility, ANYWHERE in Manhattan is close enough to a subway.)

Dim sum is indeed difficult for vegetarians, but you could try the vegetarian items at Dim Sum Go Go. Some of them are very good - I particularly recommend the Chinese Parsley Dumplings and Mushroom Dumplings - and they also have vegetarian items on their regular menu. Have a look. Some of their regular menu items are excellent and some are kind of bland, but I think you have a very good chance of having a meal that is good there. It's actually my standby for dim sum and I always get at least one or two vegetable dim sum items when I go there, though I'm not a vegetarian.

Michael aka "Pan"

 

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I found Lan Cafe, which serves vegetarian Vietnamese food. I have always been interested in trying Pho. It seems to get good reviews. Is anyone familiar with this place?

I also found Buddha Bodai. Vegetarian shark fin soup?? Thats a new one for me. They also have a full dim sum menu.

Dan

Edited by DanM (log)

"Salt is born of the purest of parents: the sun and the sea." --Pythagoras.

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I don't think I've ever seen a hugely positive review of Buddha Bodai, but Shark's Fin Soup rarely has actual shark's fins in it - those are very expensive! The idea of the soup is that it's thickened, as if with shark's fins.

I'm not sure I really understand the idea of vegetarian pho. I guess it must be made with vegetable stock, or does it have some kind of vegetarian mock-beef stock? Anyway, I can't give you any first-hand pro or con on Lan Cafe, but one thought I have for you is that Banh Mi Saigon Bakery, Mott St. between Hester and Grand, makes great Vietnamese sandwiches for lunch (I believe they close at 6 PM, although their menupages.com page says they close at 7, so maybe they extended their hours). The #6 sandwich on their menu is Banh Mi Chay Buddhist, and while I haven't had it (I usually stick with their spicy Banh Mi Ga - i.e., chicken sandwich), I'll bet it's great, and though I may be wrong, it strikes me as a much more likely thing for Vietnamese people to have than vegetarian pho. There's no place to sit there, though, so keep that in mind.

If you have any interest in pizza, there's very good pizza in New York and it's easy to get pizza with no meat toppings. For the most part, New York isn't really strong in Vietnamese food.

Michael aka "Pan"

 

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