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Vegan in Boston

I'm visiting Boston this weekend and am a strick Vegan. I am looking for any suggestions for places to eat. I'm staying on the south side! Thanks!

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  1. Shabu-Zen in Chinatown is a Japanese shabu-shabu hot pot place that offers a vegetarian option which should not be a problem for vegans. Just ask for the vegetarian broth if you go, because their default is not something you'll be able to eat. You can also try Buddha's Delight, also in Chinatown -- they're not bad and I'm pretty sure are also vegan.

    1. Grasshopper Restaurant in Allston/Brighton is Asian vegan. I remember going with some vegetarian friends some years ago and them enjoying it very much.

      4 Replies
      1. re: makonna

        There's also a vegan pizzeria a couple of doors down - TJ Scallywaggles. I have no idea if they're any good, though.

        1. re: Allstonian

          YoMa Burmese Restaurant (on the same block) has a vegetarian section of their menu - I don't believe that the cuisine uses butter or cheese, so I think anything in that part of their menu should be vegan as well (though you would have to steer clear of the potato and egg curry.)

        2. re: makonna

          Grasshopper gets decidedly mixed reviews on this board, FYI. Count me among those who were very underwhelmed.

          1. re: Karl S

            I'm with you on this. My daughter is a vegan so we explore lots of places when I visit and this is not one of our favorites. There are so many other options that are so much better.

        3. Though I'm not vegan, I've found that most higher end places jump at the opportunity and the challenge to craft a vegan tasting menu. When in doubt ask.

          1. Another "nicer restaurant" option is the Elephant Walk - they have a vegan section of their menu on their website. Elephant Walk is French-Cambodian and has a few locations.


            1 Reply
            1. re: LauraB

              My vegan daughter loves Elephant Walk. Only weak area for her was dessert.

            2. Veggie Planet in Harvard Square is a good option if you happen to be in Cambridge.

              1. i asked about this very topic several weeks ago... Grasshopper and Buddah's Delight are, to my tastes, not very good. A fine suggestion made here was Oleana, which offers vegan dishes... but, as I learned when I called them, does not do the five-course vegeatarian tasting menu as vegan. OM was also suggested for high-end vegan fare, but is yet untried by me. Veggie Planet, in Harvard Square (in the same space as Club Passim), offers decent vegan breakfast and some pizzas and stir-fry.. essentially what a vegan might make at home if they're feeling somewhat unambitious, but with good quality ingredients and a college rec room vibe.

                Great to know that Shabu-Zen has vegan soup!

                1 Reply
                1. re: tulseluper

                  It's not actually a soup they offer at Shabu-Zen. They give you the items uncooked and you put them in the broth provided to cook as you wish, then dip the result in sauces you mix together from chiles, soy sauce, garlic, and such. Again, ask for the vegetarian broth, not the default broth they automatically bring you.

                2. If you are willing to spend a bit of time on the Red Line traveling to Quincy, Little Q is excellent. It offers broth-based cuisine, and, if I recall correctly, five of the six options are vegetarian.

                  You choose the ingredients, and I can recommend all of the tofu. There are many vegetables to choose from. The vegetable platter is good value, and watercress in broth is memorable.

                  It is a slight detour, but it is the only US link in a Chinese chain. I would go out of my way to get there even if I didn't live nearby.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: chowfamily

                    Went to Little Q in Dec. and loved it - so many options and the spicy broth was just hot enough - just mind that you don't spill broth on your shirt.

                  2. Has anyone eaten at the International Buddhist Progress Society near Central Square? They're almost certainly vegan, but only open for lunch (11 to 5 Tue-Sun says the phoenix http://thephoenix.com/article_ektid35...). We always talk about eating there when we go past, but have never made it in.

                    International Buddhist Progress
                    950 Massachusetts Ave, Cambridge, MA

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: DavisSquare

                      Ate thee a few years ago. It's decent and the quality varied a bit. Worth trying though.

                      1. re: limster

                        Walked by there today around lunch time - good number of tables filled. A friend told me a few months ago that the food was good, if a bit austere.

                        1. re: digga

                          Yes, I've been there -- good but austere sums it up very well. There's a selection of appetizers, including dumplings, and then soup and various vegetarian dishes. I didn't love everything, but I appreciated the variety. (Sorry, it was a while ago and I don't remember quite what we ate.)

                    2. I can also suggest Helmand in East Cambridge which is a favorite for my vegan daughter. I actually think the Boston area is very friendly to vegans and vegetarians. My vegan daughter's favorite places are Helmand, Elephant Walk and Veggie Planet. (Veggie Planet has good prices and decent food but the atmosphere is nothing too exciting.) I was at Rendezvous a couple of weeks ago with my meat eating daughter so was not as focused on the vegan issue but I do remember that they had some food my vegan would have been very happy with, so I mentioned it to her. Depending on where you are staying, you could also check out some of the take out items at Trader Joe's.

                      1. I believe you can eat vegan at Ethiopian and Eritrean restaurants. I know and quite like Addis Red Sea in the South End (they also have a second location near Porter Square), used to think Asmara in Central Square was decent, haven't been to but have heard very good things about the new home of Fasika in Somerville.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: MC Slim JB

                          Are you sure it's not made with butter? Wikipedia says that "niter kibbeh, a clarified butter infused with ginger, garlic, and several spices" goes into many dishes.


                          1. re: DavisSquare

                            The website for Addis Red Sea says that all of their vegetarian dishes are vegan.

                        2. If you can splurge a little Radius will make a vegan version of their vegetarian entree and tasting menu. More reasonably priced, I'll throw in another vote for The Helmand.

                          1. The Other Side Cafe at the end of newbury has some vegan options. It is a great place to stop after shopping in the backbay/newbury area. I enjoy the food (I am not vegan) but my husband despises it.

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: 2peasinapod

                              Though over a year has passed since this thread began, I'd like to add Grezzo in the North End for reference. Grezzo is all raw and vegan fine dining. It should be noted, however, that they have a very nut-heavy menu for those with allergies.

                              I would likewise like to echo my raves for The Elephant Walk which will please vegans and non-vegans alike and has a nicer atmosphere but still reasonably prices (entrees under $20.)

                              Also, I'll mention hole-in-the-wall Baraka Cafe on Pearl St. in Cambridge. A North African restaurant that has does have vegan and vegetarian options.