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Thai Restaurant that offers extensive vegetarian and vegan options
Dharma Garden Thai Cuisine has been in business for one year and they focus on offering authentic, healthy vegetarian Thai food. They do have seafood as a dining option. There are 90 appetizer, salad, soup, and entree items and 10 dessert items. Diners have a choice of tofu, imitation meat, imitation seafood, and seafood.
They do not put MSG, fish sauce, or oyster sauce in any of their sauces or in their dishes. They use Wellness-filtered water, olive oil, brown sugar, sea salt, herbal seasonings, and organic produce, whenever possible.
The owners and staff are friendly and knowledgeable about the concerns of vegetarians and vegans. They are more than happy to answer any questions regarding the menu and ingredients.
Gary in Chicago
on Aug 29 04
(last updated Jan 2 12)
Mark this place closed (permanently).
Most Recent Reviews
Everyone that I know really enjoys this restaurant. I think the food here is mediocre. I haven't had great Thai food in Chicago. I ate Thai a lot in Atlanta, but none of the restaurants in Chicago live up to my expectations. The good side is there is no questioning whether something is vegetarian or vegan here. They don't use fish or oyster sauce at all. I have tried at least 5 dishes here, and I've never though anything was bad, but I never thought it was fabulous, either.
I was driving on Irving Park Road in Chicago and I saw a storefront with a sign that said "Vegetarian". That was enough for me to stop and give Dharma Garden Thai Cuisine a try. I'm very glad that I did.
The vegetarian and very vegan-friendly Thai food is excellent and I was relieved that I did not have to say "vegetable broth only" and "no fish sauce". One of the owners is a vegetarian and she has made sure that only vegetable broth is used and fish and oyster sauce are never used. It's very unusual to find a Thai restaurant that does not use fish sauce at all.
As the owner pointed out, at most Thai restaurants, a vegetarian can request that no fish sauce be used but fish sauce is ever-present in sauces that go into preparing a Thai dish. That never happens at this restaurant.
I wish this restaurant much luck. They just had their one-year anniversary. Even though they offer excellent vegetarian Thai food, business has been a little slow due to the reliance on word-of-mouth advertising. The owners are in discussion on whether or not to add a few meat dishes (other than seafood) in order to stay in business. They assured me that they will absolutely keep the cooking areas completely separate from one another.
The foods that I have tried and thoroughly enjoyed are: Dharma Garden Tofu Spring Rolls, Thai "Egg" Rolls (vegan), Thai Vegetable Crepe, Basil Noodle, Crispy Noodle Lard Nar, Bean Sprout and Tofu in Mushroom Sauce, Sticky Rice with Mango, and Rice Pudding (vegan) with Coconut in Banana Leaf.
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(Irving Park & Troy)
$$ - average
- Large Group-Friendly
- Live Music
- Private Rooms