Reviews written by Armed with a Banana

I'm vegetarian
Registered on Apr 1 04
 

Abu Nader Deli & Grocery in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Oct 8 07

rating star

I used to live across the street from Abu Nader, and I miss it.

It's a good place near the St. Paul campus to grab a quick bite to eat. My favorites were the falafel sandwich, with some excellent pickled vegetables to give it zest, the kinafeh, and the definitely-not-vegan-by-any-buttery-stretch-of-the-imagination baklava.

After sundown, the lighting is cold and fluorescent, and the tables plain with standard vinyl chairs, but it's not a bad place to eat and read a newspaper. Otherwise, you're probably better off taking things to go.

The grocery section is pretty tiny, but I enjoyed buying mango juice, pomegranate molasses, rosewater, or a brick of inexpensive cardamom coffee every now and then.

Acadia Cafe in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Nov 17 06

rating star

Good coffee, good beer (and a good variety as well), good food, great atmosphere, and it's open later than restaurants. Need I say more?

Babani's in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Apr 1 04

rating star

I like the niskena soup, too. Most of the entrees are what I call "simple food"... rice-based dishes: nothing special, but pretty good. Try the baklava, if you're a skinny gourmand like me and still need something more to eat. It's much more nutty and less sweet than the usual baklava.

I enjoy the atmosphere (I nearly gave this rating an "8") and location most of all. Babani's a good reason to go to downtown Saint Paul instead of Minneapolis!

Barbette in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Nov 30 05

rating star

La Barbette has a lively atmosphere and it's a fun place to go to for groups of four or more people. It doesn't try too hard to be "French", and by doing so, they've created an excellent brasserie.

I don't believe that they have that many vegetarian options on their menu (I've only been here once so far), but their mushroom risotto is worth a try, although a little on the bland side for my tastes. I would go back to explore this place again.

Blue Moon Coffee Cafe in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Jun 13 07

rating star

I can't comment on the food at Blue Moon, as I've never had any here... not even a pastry, so be aware that my rating doesn't reflect upon its food or its amount of vegan-friendliness.

However, the coffee is better than average, and it's an awesome place to people-watch, to read, and to bring your laptop, with wireless access and about 10,000 electrical outlets too. ;-) Or: you can usually sit almost anywhere and not have to drain your laptop battery, that is.

It's known as a GLBT place, but I've felt absolutely fine here as a straight person as well. It's simply a cool place in the Longfellow neighborhood.

Bona Vietnamese Restaurant in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Jun 13 07

rating star

I used to love Bona several years ago. I don't know whether it's my tastes or their menu that changed... or maybe I came back on a bad night.

Things just aren't spiced right... for example, tofu / mock duck, carrots, onions and bamboo shoots in a generic, thin brown sauce isn't that appetizing... or original at all.

Service is very efficient but impersonal. The atmosphere and decor is nicer than the typical budget restaurant.

Prices are very cheap for the food, however, with most veggie entrees currently around $7. Whatever your opinion may be about the quality, the quantity is clearly generous.

However, you can do better in Stadium Village or in Dinkytown.

Camdi in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Apr 18 07

rating star

Camdi has continued to work on their vegan cuisine, which is now on an entirely separate menu (red = meat, green = veggie). In addition, they cook items in a separate wok.

Their hot and sour soup is excellent, possibly the best I've ever had, and it has a variety of many fresh spices. The tofu and vegetable soup is mild, but also good, with a touch of sweetness.

Main dishes are very light and tasty. I think that the owners have done well not only to create, but to continually refine, the vegan selections.

Best of all, they live by the motto "service with a smile", and they strive to make people happy, going beyond politeness. In the past, I noticed that the server recognized and greeted repeat customers as though they were friends.

Don't make the mistake of walking past and ignoring Camdi.

Chatterbox Pub in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Mar 7 05

rating star

The Chatterbox is fun and cozy. I'm from Saint Paul, but I enjoy biking out of my way to go to the Chatterbox on a weeknight out. It's close to the light rail, when energy or weather don't permit the bike ride.

Food: I've only had french fries and a veggie wrap on separate occasions, both of which I can recommend. Dipping sauces for the fries come in a variety of flavors.

Beer: The Chatterbox Lager is on the bland side. However, they have Young's Double Chocolate Stout on tap, which is rare (but unfortunately not vegan), as well as the much more common Summit Ale. They also brew have a home-brewed Chit-Chit Ale, which I haven't tried.

Play a board game and relax... or maybe you'll do karaoke on a Monday night? Have fun... and be sure to invite me along! ;-)

Chipotle in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Mar 4 05

rating star

I can recommend Chipotle's black bean burrito. The cilantro rice makes it more tasty. The Seven Corners location is more relaxed and spacious than the more "fun", but cramped, Stadium Village or busy Hennepin Avenue locations.

It's all fast food, but good, plentiful fast food for big appetites and everything is custom-made to order. However, I wish they'd quit raising their prices. The value isn't as good and the novelty of the ever-expanding Chipotle chain has worn off a bit compared to when I first started to eat here.

Dashen Ethiopian Restaurant in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Mar 19 07

rating star

Dashen's yemisir wot (red lentils in berbere sauce) is the best that I've had anywhere. It has a lot of flavor, but it isn't overwhelmingly spicy. Other selections are fair to pretty good.

I'd recommend the yemisir wot, or especially the vegetarian combo platter, which has all of their veggie selections, to anyone new to Dashen. The combo platter is enough food for two people (unless you're really hungry), which is another plus, in terms of price as well as the fun of sharing a good meal. I believe that all of their vegetarian meals are vegan, given the Ethiopian rules for fasting.

Drink prices are also quite reasonable. As of this review, most import bottles are around $3.50-4.00, and tap beer (Sam Adams (?) or Guinness, for example) is about $4.00 for a 20-ounce mug.

I also enjoy the casual atmosphere and the variety of live music that might be playing on a given weeknight. It's also a plus that they've donated food to at least one CAA potluck.

Davanni's in Twin Cities, Minnesota
May 8 07

rating star

I haven't had anything except their pizza, which is good, but not great. Not much in the way of ambiance either, unfortunately.

However, thanks to a friend, I'm hooked on their cheese pizzas with banana peppers... an awesome combo.

I don't believe that they offer soy cheese for vegans or others looking for a nondairy alternative. I wish they would.

Given the other options (Galactic, Uptown Pizza Luce), Davanni's is my third choice for Uptown / Lyn-Lake pizza.

Ecopolitan in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Jun 28 07

rating star

Ecopolitan does some amazing things with food.

Since it's raw food, and organic, expect two things: 1) Not everything on the menu can be made... and sometimes *a lot* of things on the menu can't be made, because one or more of the fresh ingredients aren't in stock, and 2) Since it's raw food, the preparation is intense to chop all of the vegetables, and it's slow food. Relax and enjoy some conversation.

In any case, I've been impressed with whatever they make, including their improvised and original creations, such as their soups. And it's one of very few places where I can only finish half of my meal because it's so filling and satisfying, even though most or all things are low in calories.

If you're looking for an original, all vegan, dining experience, or tasty food (regardless of your dietary beliefs or preferences), try Ecopolitan. It's unusual, but a rewarding and comfortable gourmet experience.

Evergreen Chinese Restaurant in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Mar 19 07

rating star

I enjoy going to Evergreen whenever I can. Every time that I've gone (5-6 times so far?), it's been an enjoyable experience.

I like their 3-cup tofu, and I'm not a fan of tofu, either, but the herbs and spices make it a very light, but satisfying, meal. The same applies to my new 'favorite', the kung pao tofu, which has more spiciness, but isn't overpowering in the least, unless you decide to eat all of the red peppers.

They do a very good job with the mock meats. Similarly to tofu, I'm not a fan of most mock meats or most sweet-and-sour sauces, but I really liked their sweet-and-sour mock chicken, which was a very pleasant surprise.

I've gone to Evergreen as a part of two larger groups; one time I made reservations myself. They were accommodating to our group, and I had the impression that they've done this many times before.

It's helpful as well that their menu is designed as well as it is. It makes ordering food very easy when you can find the vegan selections or which items are labeled 'spicy' (Minnesota spicy, that is). :-)

Evergreen is consistently great!

Galactic Pizza in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Mar 10 05

rating star

This is a fun, happy place. It has the ambience of a diner and a retro lounge simultaneously.

Our table had the Organic Veggie and the Second Harvest Heartland pizzas (the vegan versions). Interestingly, I preferred the Second Harvest, but others preferred the Organic Veggie. In any case, both had a lot of flavor. The cheese was a bit fluid, even after letting it set for a few minutes.

I'm very glad that Galactic Pizza is making a conscientious effort to serve vegan food (and not just one or two menu items), unlike Pizza Butt or Vomitos.

Update: I've been back several times since my first visit in the summer of 2004 and I've grown to prefer their vegan pizza to others' dairy pizza. It's easier to digest and healthier. On the negative side, on one occasion the staff was impolite, possibly because they were overwhelmed with orders.

Updated Update (03/05): They're better than ever. They've refined and perfected either the baking process or the vegan cheese itself, because it's more solid now, but it still has the same flavor. They've also begun to serve house wine and tap beer (Summit & Grain Belt), which is a plus for conscientious drunks such as myself. ;-)

Gigi's Cafe in Twin Cities, Minnesota
May 14 07

rating star

Friendly local cafe with a wide variety of vegetarian options.

You'll have better luck as a vegetarian than as a vegan, as the selections vary. Soups may or may not be vegan, but they are marked 'vegan' on the menu board if they are.

That said, I really enjoyed my vegan red pepper soup. So much that I came back for dinner with a friend for a vegetarian enchilada (and my friend liked her vegetarian walnut-something sandwich). I'm not sure if they're able to adapt items to be made vegan.

The coffee is good and has the fine oily sheen that you'd expect. Wine and variety of bottled beer also available.

They seem to do decent business. I wouldn't make a special trip here (even though it's very good), just because it seems to be such a neighborhood place. But if you're vegetarian, or wanting to eat healthily, and in the area, drop in.

Grumpy's Bar & Grill in Twin Cities, Minnesota
May 1 08

rating star

Grumpy's is a decent place for vegetarians to eat, especially considering that it's mainly just a bar.

I can only recall one vegan item on their menu, namely, their veggie chili, which is spicy and satisfying.

As far as vegetarian items go, the stuffed olive thingys (yes, that's what they're called!) or deep fried mac and cheese might be the way to go, if you're looking for something different.

Grumpy's is fun, and a good place to eat when there isn't something going on at the Metrodome. Before Twins games, however, it gets crowded, the servers are rushed, and the menu is limited-- keep that in mind if you're looking for more than beer.

Hard Times Cafe in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Oct 19 06

rating star

Both the atmosphere and good ol' diner food in vegan and vegetarian styles make this place fantastic. It vies for my wandering attention on the West Bank with the Triple Rock. Like the T-Rock, it is biker- and vegan-friendly. And they're open almost 24 hours. (Closed from 4-6 a.m., I think.)

Food portions are very large and very affordable as well. My favorite is the black beans, rice, salsa and kale, which goes for about $6-7 for a heaping plateful. Good coffee. Great place to hang out with a group or by yourself to catch up on reading. Informal, collective, eclectic.

Herkimer Pub & Brewery in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Dec 13 04

rating star

Yes, kids, beer is a vegetable, too! :-) They brew about six to ten different types of beer, but not all are available at the same time.

For a brew pub (ie, burgers, fries, meat & potato stereotype), the Herkimer has a few vegetarian entrees. I enjoyed their platter of pita bread and vegetable samples (beans, hummus, sauces).

The server was knowledgeable about the food... and she was respectful to us vegetarians. Casual atmosphere; summer outdoors makes for ideal people-watching in a great neighborhood.

Huong Sen Restaurant in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Oct 23 07

rating star

Well, I can't blame a restaurant for its soy sauce or its prices, when the food is of such good quality.

You'll find many variations on mock duck and tofu. Whereas the variety isn't as large as what you'd find at Evergreen, for example, it still takes up a page at the back of the menu, and is entirely without fish sauce, which is refreshing.

It is a bit pricier than your average Asian restaurant in the Cities, which will surprise you, given its spartan appearance, but I find that the extra cost is worth it. For example, something similar that you'd find for $8-9 someplace else would go for about $11 at Huong Sen. Also, it should be noted that the prices listed in the online menu are from around 2004-2005, so most things are more expensive today. However, instead of being served a bunch of bland filler vegetables (i.e., carrots & bamboo shoots) smothered in gravy, you actually get a whole bowl spicy mock duck, for example, and a separate, smaller bowl of rice.

Service is efficient and polite.

They also have bottled and tap beer ($3-5 range), as well as just one plum wine.

If you're in the St. Thomas or Macalester area, it's worth a try.

Jamba Juice in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Oct 6 06

rating star

Jamba has more vegan options than when they first started out. As another reviewer pointed out, it's advisable to go to their informative menu guides and FAQs on jambajuice.com first to find out which flavors / boosts are vegan, as well as to figure out what the heck a "boost" is to begin with. ("No I don't want a boost, ack!") ;-)

Their smoothies are big and pricey, but IMHO worth it. My favorite is the mega mango, but everything that I've had is good, including their creamy soymilk blends. They even offer a vegan cinnamon-apple pretzel.

I tend to not eat enough fruit, so I especially like Jamba Juice because it's the ideal combination of quick, tasty and healthy (and maybe not as miraculously healthy and restorative as their sales pitches might imply, but very solid nonetheless).

Jewel of India in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Mar 10 05

rating star

I have not been here in a while (over a year), but I think that the Jewel of India has some excellent cuisine. I can't remember what proportion of vegetarian (or vegan??) entrees fill the menu, but I felt that there were plenty of choices. Portions tend to be generous.

Their vegetable biryani/briyani is superb and more tasty than that from the respected Udupi Cafe, for example. The sampler platter is always a good choice if you can't decide on what to get.

The atmosphere is pleasant and casual. The Seven Corners location makes it a great spot to eat before attending a performance at the Southern Theater, for example.

Kien Giang in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Jan 18 07

rating star

A group of us tried to go to Kien Giang tonight to try out its famed vegetarian buffet. Reservations for a group of 20+ were made a week in advance.

Today, their phone was disconnected when the organizer tried to confirm her reservation, and the first to arrive saw that the place was closed due to "remodeling". Even worse, when she had posted a sign up indicating that the last-minute alternate location (at Peninsula), they took her sign down, so only four people out of twenty (or more) were able to enjoy a meal out that evening. Were they deliberately trying to ruin our evening as well as hurt their competitors unfairly?

I don't care how cheap, profuse or how delicious their food line is. This is shameful behavior and no way to run a business, and this is a disservice to the small (but vocal!) vegetarian community. I would urge caution when dealing with these childish people. Fortunately for the Twin Cities, many other vegetarian options are available.

La Bodega in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Aug 12 04

rating star

This is a tough place to describe concisely, but I had great time and one of the best meals of my life here. Less is more: portions are small for the price, but incredibly tasty. For example, I have never had better green beans in my life (in garlic and olive oil)!

The sangria is outstanding... our group of three had to restrain ourselves from ordering a second pitcher.

Each portion of vegetables is small and pricey, but well worth the cost.

Little Taj Mahal in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Apr 11 07

rating star

Seeing as it's the only Indian cuisine in Dinkytown, Little Taj Mahal is a plus.

Prices are incredibly cheap, especially for the buffet, which has a decent selection of vegetarian items (at least 3-4 items every time), and they change things up just a little bit every now and then.

Food tends to be on the bland and unspicy side, so I'd recommend shaking some chili powder on top to give it more flavor. It makes a difference.

On a side note, they have the worst utensils ever. Flimsy plastic and unergonomic forks make it hard to eat without looking like a four-year-old. BYOS (Bring Your Own Silverware)? I'm all about being proletarian, but... ;-)

Marla's Caribbean Cuisine in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Dec 15 08

rating star

I enjoyed my first meal at Marla's. I had the jerk tofu with the roti wrap, along with some lentils on the side. The tofu was very spicy, and, as other reviewers have written, it gets stronger the more you eat it. The side of lentils, on the other hand, had a mild, sweet flavor with accents of tamarind. The roti was freshly made and an excellent complement to either dish, and I ordered the roti on the side instead of as a wrap, so that I could scoop up both.

Along with the meal, I had samosas as appetizers, and they had a subtle taste to them. The hummus was better than average, I thought. Someone else was nice enough to share their fried plantains with me, and it helped take the edge off of the spice.

If you go with someone else, I'd recommend getting one spicy dish (such as the jerk) and one non-spicy dish (such as the veggie stew / brown down) and splitting them to cut down on the spice. Otherwise, you can also request the jerk to be made milder, but I liked the spicy version so much that I couldn't imagine having it any other way.

Overall, I had a great time at Marla's. It's a fun, small place worth going to.

Mysore Cafe in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Nov 24 07

rating star

I'm amazed and thrilled that a place has a Friday and Saturday night buffet, and such a good one. It is the best vegetarian buffet in the Cities.

As other reviewers have noted, everything is clearly marked if it's vegan, and unmarked if it's vegetarian. This includes the menu (starred) as well as the buffet signs ("vegan"). (If it were this easy to go vegan, I would be one!)

Overall, I've had very good experiences with both the food and the service. However, the ambiance varies according to where you're seated. Sometimes it feels like a four-square remodeled shoe box, at other times, it feels warm and intimate.

I have yet to decide for sure whether I like The Vegetarian or Mysore more when it comes to Indian food, but I'm very glad that Mysore is around, in any case.

(Update 11/24/07: Mysore is no longer "all vegitarian" (sic) (as all of their signs and menus read). They're serving chicken in their buffet, "because we were losing business", according to one of the managers. This comes, of course, at the expense of the variety of vegan and vegetarian choices. I guess that makes the decision between The Vegetarian and Mysore that much easier. Minus one star to Mysore.)

(I feel like going on a mini-rant here. How can one infer that the lack of chicken on a menu would equate to losing business? Or: how would false advertising and possibly alienating your core group of customers expect to increase business?)

Noodles & Company in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Oct 6 06

rating star

If it weren't for the excellent Indonesian peanut saute, I probably wouldn't bother going to Noodles & Company.

To clarify on another reviewer's comment that they aren't veggie-friendly, I'd advise everyone to look ahead at noodles.com "diet guide" and figure out what's in each dish for clarification, rather than asking a possibly inexperienced employee who might not know.

Old World Pizza in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Jul 21 11

rating star

I've been to Old World Pizza twice with my very gorgeous lady friend, and I like it. I also like to call it Auld World Pizza, as in Auld Lang Syne (runs off to sing, throws confetti, then comes back to write this review... jazz hands!).

Anyhow, their prices are reasonable for the quality. The pizzas have thin crusts with generous toppings and both times the pizzas were cooked for the perfect amount of time. The salad bar is all-youse-can-eat... small, but with enough toppings to keep us happy. Baddabing!

Wait staff and cashiers have been helpful and polite, polite enough that we returned and will return again.

Should auld acquaintance be forgot and never brought to mind? I don't know. Eat a pizza here!

Pizza Luce in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Jul 15 05

rating star

I have fun every time that I go here. Pizza and beer... who can ask for anything more? Service is prompt and attentive without being pukey and cheerful. The place has attitude, and I like it! It's lively and relaxing at the same time. I feel almost enlightened when I eat there.

I tried their soy cheese for the first time, and I prefer it to the animal-based dairy cheeses, because the soy cheese is lighter. I recommend it! I haven't tried their rinotta yet, so I can't comment on that... that will be my next adventure and next visit. The other toppings and the crisp crust make a perfect match.

I like their pizza so much that I haven't ventured into the many other offerings. I haven't had a good enough excuse to do otherwise.

Update: Since the original review, I've tried their vegan spaghetti & "meatballs" and I like it-- tangy tomato sauce. Some people might find the "meatballs" on the dry side (but I'd prefer dry to soggy or greasy).

Also, the rinotta vegan cheese tastes good. It's a second to Galactic Pizza's version, but it holds its own. I'd order it again anytime.

Rainbow Foods in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Jun 21 07

rating star

If you want to spend $4.39 for a package of Boca burgers, Rainbow Foods in Uptown is awesome!

Sapor Cafe & Bar in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Jun 16 06

rating star

When I went to Sapor for my one and only time a couple of years ago, they only had one vegetarian entree (an egg-noodle alfredo), and nothing vegan. (They do rotate their menu, however.)

However, my friend asked the waitress why there weren't any vegan options and the server convinced the chef to create a beautiful and colorful vegan dish. Amazing and impressive! But why wouldn't they just offer this on the menu?

Be advised as well that their high-back chairs are covered in salmon-colored leather. Creepy...

Shuang Cheng in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Feb 26 07

rating star

The food here tastes good, is reasonably priced for the large portions, and is above the standard of average Chinese food in America. You'll spend about $7-9 for an average vegetarian dish, with rice and a pot of generic tea included. The total, with tax and tip, will equate to about $11-12 per meal.

I can recommend a number of dishes, including the curry mock dock (my favorite), as well as the vegetable delight and Chinese broccoli. There is nothing special about the food, the service or the decor, but it is still quite modest and satisfying all around. If you're in Dinkytown, this is a pretty good option, although with Camdi's recently expanded vegan menu, for example, you could do even better.

Sometimes the service can be more indifferent than I like (very efficient, but not friendly). I've had better experiences at other Chinese places, such as at Evergreen, which is more vegan-friendly to begin with as well.

Soccer Cafe in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Oct 2 10

rating star

Soccer Cafe has a good buffet for everyone in Dinkytown. Everything is marked whether it is vegan or not. A decent part of the buffet is vegan, and it's tasty.

You can get all-you-can-eat buffet or food by the pound, and you can opt whether or not to have a cold or hot drink for another dollar or so.

Sometimes, because it's a buffet, the food might not be at the right temperature. That's been the only negative for me.

The manager is quite a happy guy, which is a plus.

ThanhDo in Twin Cities, Minnesota
May 16 08

rating star

Pretty good food, but lousy service, at least with our group.

They screwed up our order by bringing out and calling one dish (Vegetable Fantasy) that was actually another (Vietnamese Basil). Later, when I was without a meal because they had an unclaimed Vegetable Fantasy, they then proceeded to scold the guy who got the wrong dish, as though it was his fault, as well as me, and was told initially "well, I wrote Vegetable Fantasy down for you!" (which, after looking at the check, she wrote Vietnamese Basil with mock dock down as I had ordered it-- she was just desperately and amateurishly trying to cover for the mix-up by trying to blame both of us). Plus, they never apologized once to either of us.

Plus, they never brought the hot sauce that we requested (and for some reason, they don't keep any sauces on the table, inclduing soy sauce). And they only came around to fill our water once the whole night. They just didn't care, as they probably figured that they were getting their mandatory 18% large-group tip.

I'm not going back, although the food was pretty good (Vietnamese basil), but it was a thoroughly negative first impression for me. I hope that yours is a better experience if you go and that Thanh Do enjoys their karmic reward for their injustice and indifference.

Triple Rock Social Club in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Aug 23 05

rating star

Happy hours and brunches are king at the Triple Rock.

It's nice to have some vegan food with a screwdriver on a sunny Sunday morning at 11 a.m., with or without a hangover... it's just cool and so against the traditional non-drinking Lutheran stereotype of the Twin Cities. Call me a rebel without a cause-- that's what I might be! Vegan french toast is filling and satisfying.

The lunch/dinner/sandwich options are excellent as well. Everything that I've tried has been good to great. My fave is the vegan sloppy joe, relatively spicy, it goes well with any ale or cider.

I'm probably as "normal" looking as you can get (without wearing business clothing), but people treat me nicely there, no judgements. Very cool. I have written a two-page manifesto on photography called "The Triple Rock Manifesto" in its honor, something which I've never done before and probably never hope to do again. If you're into manifestos, maybe the Triple Rock is calling your name? ;-) Yeah, I'm a happy kook, and I'm quite satisfied with my life so far! :-)

Plenty of free parking at the bike rack on the side of the building (thanks!). One more reason for me to go there, as though I needed another reason!

It barely edges out the Hard Times as my favorite place to go on the West Bank. Three cheers for the Triple Rock!

Update (August 2005):
They have recently expanded their menu to over twice the size with some delightful food, such as the vegan meat loaf that I tasted. This is way that meat loaf was meant to be! Great texture, mixed with cooked carrots, not greasy, and it's served with real mashed potatoes (coarsely mashed red potatoes with skins). I'm not sure if the Texas Toast that comes with it is vegan or not (I'm vegetarian and only a closet vegan), so you might want to ask first.

The Vegetarian in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Feb 26 07

rating star

I'm verifying the positive reviews about The Vegetarian, which thankfully lives up to its name with all veggie cuisine.

The menu indicates vegan items with a special symbol for ease of use.

I enjoyed my dinner, especially the vada rasa soup, which consists of chickpea dumplings in a thick, herbal tomato (rasam) base. The main entree, a vegetable curry, wasn't nearly as good, but was still very enjoyable.

Next time, I'll have to try the very impressive dosas, appetizing both in sheer size and in the quantity of the potato filling throughout, which all three in our group (who had ordered this) raved about.

Service was fun and excellent, and our server handled our big group of 20 (and our potentially obnoxious joking) in stride. She was awesome!

With the passing of the former Udupi restaurant, The Vegetarian fills the impressive void easily for excellent vegan and vegetarian cuisine from both Southern and Northern India in a fun setting. I'd go back in a heartbeat.

Village Wok in Twin Cities, Minnesota
Feb 26 07

rating star

I've avoided this place in the past because of negative reviews.

Some of the other reviewers' points are valid: some of the vegetarian dishes use chicken broth unless you specify. And there was one dish listed as "oyster flavored", which is vague: is it made with oysters (likely) or does it use a vegan substitute that tastes like oysters (less likely)? My server verified the question about chicken broth (without me even having to ask) and also asked me if I wanted my dish to be prepared vegan style. I believe that their menus also indicate to specify this as well, so please do so when ordering if the server doesn't ask you.

That said, I've found a new place for my favorite Asian dish: the mock duck in curry sauce at the Village Wok is even lighter and tastier than at my other 'favorite' places. :-)

The service was excellent. A large group of us (9 total) arrived spontaneously, and therefore without reservations, but we were seated happily and almost immediately. Our server had a great sense of humor and he knew what he was doing. The cashier was friendly and he asked everyone if they enjoyed their meals, which everyone did enjoy.

It was a thoroughly positive, tasty and friendly experience. My initial impressions will bring me back to the Village Wok.

Cilantro in Akron, Ohio
Mar 22

rating star

I went to Cilantro with Math Girl and I concur: the food, service and decor exceeded my expectations.

I enjoyed the Thai ginger tofu even more than the curry mock dock that I was looking forward to. Both were spiced appropriately and prepared with attention to detail.

Cilantro is a classy, relaxed place and we would go back!

Happy Dog in Cleveland, Ohio
Mar 22

rating star

Wow, what a fun place! Happy Dog is a laid-back, neighborhood bar with three items on the menu: 1) hot dogs (vegetarian or vegan Field Roast are options), 2) tater tots, and 3) french fries.

The kicker is that there are around 50 toppings and sauces to choose from and each is designated as being vegan, vegetarian, having meat or being gluten-free on a separate menu (or any combination of these).

Prices are reasonable ($5 for hot dogs with unlimited toppings and $3 each for tots or fries as of March 2014).

It's a fun, family-friendly place with great food and helpful servers. We went once and had to go back the next night to try more!

Melt Bar & Grilled in Cleveland, Ohio
Mar 22

rating star

We loved the Parmageddon sandwich (grilled cheese with cheese pierogi, in homage to Parma). Portions are large and we were full after splitting the sandwich and fries.

Melt is fun and one of their special touches is that the menu is affixed the back side of 1960's and 1970's LP album covers. Foreigner for the win! ;-)

Service was friendly as well as attentive and we had a great lunch at the Independence location!

Ardor Pub & Grill in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Dec 27 05

rating star

I've eaten at the Ardor only twice since it changed names, but both times have been pleasant. They have a number of veggie options beyond the ubiquitous veggie burger, including inexpensive wraps.

A bit of history: Ardor used to be known as Benjamin Brigg's Pub, The Brass Ring, and previously was the original location of the John Hawks Pub (now located inside the 100 East Water building), which explains why the interior is decorated in dark wood.

The prices in the listing are overstated. I don't even think there is a single menu item over $10. For example, a California wrap (hummus, lettuce, onion, tomato) with a side of mixed fries (French fries & sweet potato fries) with another side order was only $5.99 in 2005. (Second sides include things such as mac & cheese or coleslaw-- I don't think there are any vegan options for the included second side dish.)

The food is nothing special, but it's pretty good for what you'd expect otherwise from a Milwaukee bar.

Overall, it's a cozy, inexpensive, smoke-free dining experience and worth the trip if you're downtown and east of the river.

Beans & Barley in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Aug 16 04

rating star

I like this place and the neighborhood. I can't say too much, only having been here a couple of times, but I have had only positive experiences.

I can recommend their vegan biscuits and gravy-- it looks nothing like traditional biscuits and gravy, but it tastes better: very light, but satisfying.

As for lunch / dinner, the vegetarian chili is so-so, kind of bland, but I like spicy foods, so that might be my bias. Their black bean burritos are more my style.

Oh, yeah, if you're a coffee fan, be sure to have a cup of Alterra coffee.

Outpost Natural Foods in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Jun 16 06

rating star

I miss Outpost. They offer a lot of organic options at good prices with the convenience of a grocery store.

Palomino in Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Dec 27 05

rating star

I've never seen so many vegetarian or vegan options or such a vegan-friendly place in the Milwaukee area. It's definitely not what you'd expect from the south side or anywhere else in M'waukee... but Bay View and St. Francis are the up-and-coming cool areas of town.

All menu items are clearly designated as vegetarian or vegan, including the side orders and even the various dips that are included with meals. I am giving Palomino an extra point because of this, as well as for the variety.

Prices are a little high, but you get a lot of food, and most of it is delicious. If you're a beer drinker, the pints are very reasonable ($3 range).

If you're looking for an eclectically decorated retro bar and restaurant with vinyl booths and vegan food, welcome to the Palomino! Yee-haw! ;-)

Ratings Without Reviews