Reviews written by Eric Purdy

Registered on Jun 24 03

MaggieMudd in San Francisco, California
Aug 15 04

rating star

Maggie Mudd has the best soy ice cream I've *ever had. One friend who isn't vegan even thinks it's the best ice cream she's ever had. I agree! Go now.

Alice and Friends Vegetarian Cafe in Chicago, Illinois
Jun 26 03

rating star

This place is pretty good. I'm partial to fake meat, which this restaurant prepares well, and their other dishes are good too. Their cakes are pretty good, but I'd have to say they're not as good as the Chicago Diner's cakes.

Amitabul in Chicago, Illinois
Oct 14 04

rating star

This place has really grown on me recently. The trick is ordering the right stuff - don't get the featured dishes, get the Bi Bim Bop or pancakes, which are tucked away in one corner of the menu.

The desserts are ridiculously good, probably the best vegan desserts in Chicago. I recommend the red bean rice cake especially - it's this little gummy blob of tastiness.

Chicago Diner in Chicago, Illinois
Oct 9 05

rating star

The Chicago Diner has always been pretty decent, but recently they've gotten a lot better. (They got a new chef, maybe?) It's pretty serious quality now.

Especially recommended: the seitan reuben, the chikin parmigiana, and the barbecue wings (made from seitan, I think).

Also, they have 100% vegan soy cheese, so vegans can get all sorts of traditional favorites in adapted form.

Green Zebra in Chicago, Illinois
Jul 25 10

rating star

I really, really hate this place. It's pretentious as all get-out, they even make a big deal about giving you your complimentary appetizer. Then they charge you an arm and a leg for the blandest, smallest dishes you will ever see.

The worst part, though, is all the adoring newspaper writeups you see about how it's a vegetarian Mecca, how it's redefining vegetarian cuisine, etc. Unless you count doing its best to further the "chicken and fish are plants, not animals" idea, it's not redefining anything.

If you find yourself thinking about going here, you should instead go to a decent vegetarian restaurant (perhaps the Diner) and then burn a couple 20-dollar bills. You can find better vegan food at any vegetarian or vegan restaurant in the city, and it'll be much cheaper. Frankly, the only reason this restaurant hasn't closed its doors yet is that people automatically praise anything expensive. Ultimately i hope there will be an expensive, haute cuisine vegetarian restaurant in Chicago that's actually good (heck, the Millenium is already doing that in San Francisco, and doing it well) but this isn't it.

Hyde Park Produce in Chicago, Illinois
Oct 20 04

rating star

This place is pretty darn awesome. They have great fresh produce at cheap prices - if you live in Hyde Park, you should be getting your produce here, not anywhere else.

They also have tons of vegan and vegetarian alternatives, and at reasonable prices, unlike the Coop Markets which rip you off.

Istria Cafe in Chicago, Illinois
Nov 20 05

rating star

This place is pretty good. The staff knows which sorbet/gelato is/isn't vegan, and the sorbet is pretty tasty. The coffee is pretty decent too.

Karyn's Cooked in Chicago, Illinois
Feb 21 05

rating star

Phenomenal. Great food, great service.

Leona's in Chicago, Illinois
Oct 20 04

rating star

I'm not sure I actually believe that their soy cheese is vegan. This has been the subject of much debate, of course.

The vegan burger is pretty decent, though, and I give them some points for trying, I suppose.

Noodles, etc. in Chicago, Illinois
Oct 20 04

rating star

It's vegan-friendly, of course, but i just don't like the food all that much. Too bland.

Pick Me Up Cafe in Chicago, Illinois
Aug 7 04

rating star

I must admit, I really love this place. It's cool, it's open to godawful hours of the morning, and getting vegan stuff is easy. And the food's pretty darn good. Get some of the best vegan cake in the city, and QUALITY vegan french toast. Shy away from the veggie burger, though - they just pull something out of a box and put it on a bun. Not a good something, either.

Rajun Cajun in Chicago, Illinois
Oct 20 04

rating star

Cheap. Fast. Tasty.

Get the Vegetarian Combo Meal - it's got good variety and it's a good deal.

Ras Dashen in Chicago, Illinois
Sep 1 05

rating star

This place has really good food, and you don't have to think about what is and isn't vegan.

Third World Cafe in Chicago, Illinois
Dec 7 04

rating star

My recommendation: get the Mediterranean Veggie sandwich without the cheese. It's really amazing. The peanut butter and jelly is also pretty good.

This place is pretty awesome. They make the sandwiches to order, so you can get things vegan. No vegan baked goods, which is a pity. They have soymilk though.

Nice place to hang out, also. Lots of chairs and tables, and people actually do stay. They've had to institute limits as to how long you can stay without getting anything, so that there's room to sit down.

Veggies to Go in Chicago, Illinois
Apr 11 07

rating star

I have very mixed feelings about this place. The food is very good, but it is strangely difficult to get reliably vegan food here.

The staff is very friendly, but it seems like they haven't been briefed on what's vegan and what isn't. The owner knows about everything, so when she's there (which is fairly often) you can just ask her. But when she's not there, it can be frustrating - it seems like the staff just kind of guess what's vegan, and they're not always right.

If they ever get this straightened out, though, it will be the best place ever.

Cumin in Cincinnati, Ohio
Oct 7 06

rating star

This restaurant used to be good, but it changed location, raised its prices by 50%, and made all the dishes a third smaller and slightly worse. They also got rid of a number of the dishes that were vegan, such as their great tomato/coconut-milk soup.

The food is not particularly good now - it's dry and flavorless, and they have messed up all their recipes to make the food look prettier. (The tofu jalfrehzi now has two massive triangular wedges of tofu that have only been cooked on the outside. It's visually striking, I guess, but it doesn't taste that great.)

(There's also a slight undertone of fish smell in the whole place now because they added a whole bunch of fish to the menu.)

Manna Vegetarian Deli, Books, and Herbs in Cincinnati, Ohio
Dec 19 04

rating star

This restaurant is pretty good. Their barbecue sandwich and curried tofu "chicken" salad are both vegan and quite good. I wouldn't recommend the veggie burger, though, as it's more veggie than burger. The vegan "mac and cheese" is nothing at all like macaroni and cheese, but it's pretty good in its own way.

The hours are extremely annoying, though.

Susan's Natural World in Cincinnati, Ohio
Jun 28 03

rating star

There's a pretty good selection here - some stuff, like Earth Balance (vegan margarine) I can find here but nowhere else. It's pricey, though.

Dragonfly Neo-V Cuisine in Columbus, Ohio
Jul 3 05

rating star

This restaurant has very adventurous, interesting food. But it's also very tasty. It's one of the best restaurants I've been to.

Maggie's Mercantile in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Dec 11 05

rating star

I once went to this place very randomly, because I saw a sign for it on the highway. It took me at least half an hour to find it, as no one around there had heard of it. It was quite good, though. They had a buffet full of diverse things, most of which were well done. They even had cake.

Tien Ren in Houston, Texas
Aug 23 03

rating star

This place has a decently large menu. The Peking Supreme (an imitation Peking Duck from seitan) was very good, the Eggless Foo Yung was frighteningly close to the real thing, and the cake was quite excellent.

Amalfi in Norfolk, Virginia
Aug 29 04

rating star

Lots of vegan versions of italian classics - fettucine alfredo, spaghetti with meatballs, bruschetta, gelato. This place is terrific, and it's easy to order vegan stuff.

Dragon City in Norfolk, Virginia
Aug 29 04

rating star

This place is so great. It's got a separate vegetarian menu, with vegetarian versions of most things you could get at a Chinese take-out restaurant. A word of warning - don't get anything with faux shrimp in it unless you want to eat something truly frighteningly close to shrimp in taste, texture, and appearance.

Rajput in Norfolk, Virginia
Aug 29 04

rating star

Nice place. They have a lunch buffet which is usually about half vegan. The waiters know what's vegan and what isn't, and the menu's pretty clear. My favorite dish so far is the Palak Tofu, which is spinach with tofu.

KB's Frozen Custard in Poquoson, Virginia
Aug 29 04

rating star

Truly excellent soy ice cream. They have multiple flavors now, but only one per day. They also sell different flavors by the pint. The soy stuff's a little pricy, but it's worth it.

Cyber Dogs in Seattle, Washington
May 22 06

rating star

This place is very nice. The veggie dogs are very tasty, and there is a lot of variety to choose from. They also have some random vegan goodies like Alternative Baking Company cookies, which are great.

The staff is very friendly, as well.

Globe Cafe & Bakery in Seattle, Washington
May 22 06

rating star

This place is one of the least "vegan-tasting" places I've ever been to. I had the biscuits and gravy and some pie, both of which were vegan and amazing.

This place is probably not very healthy, but it's worth it.

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