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Vegetarian dinner?

I'm taking friend out for a late holiday/early birthday gift, and I need some recommendations. She's a vegetarian, I am not although I love to do the vegetarian tastings ... I've checked out the Oleana website and that looks fantastic to me, but does anyone have other recommendations? Price doesn't matter, but I do want to go somewhere that does a fantastic vegetarian meal. And preferably not brunch; I'm the only human being who hates going to brunch.


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  1. Hamersley's and Craigie on Main both do wonderful things with vegetarian dishes. Craigie has a vegetarian tasting. Hamersley's was listed as on vacation until January 7th on the Winter vacations thread.

    1 Reply
    1. re: BostonZest

      I'm a vegetarian and have become a big fan of Craigie on Main, but it is worth noting that they typically have only one vegetarian entree, a salad, and a soup that can sometimes be vegetarianized by dropping some of the good bits as options. For a weekday/ neighborhood dinner, lack of choice may not be a problem, provided that the non-choices are good (and at CoM they typically are), but for a birthday or special dinner I wouldn't take a vegetarian as making a choice is often part of the fun.

      A place I've seen recommended on the boards is Garden at the Cellar. Though I haven't tried it yesterday, I walked by just yesterday and can confirm that they do have a very vegetarian friendly menu. Again, I haven't dined there yet, but the place seemed to lack some of the atmosphere that I would want for a festive dinner.


    2. Martsa's on Elm (Tibetan) in Davis Square, Somerville, has excellent vegetarian selections.
      Elephant Walk (French/Cambodian) has Boston, Cambridge (Porter Sq) and Waltham locations and tasty veg options. If you want to go farther afield there's Organic Garden in Beverly or Life Alive in Lowell.

      1. Although I'm not particularly a fan of the East Coast Grill, they do have a vegetarian entree that several veg friends have raved about. (I've several times wished I'd ordered it, when I see it next to whatever I've ordered!) Part of what makes it good is that they use whatever is fresh and in season at the moment, though, so I'm not sure that this is a very good time of year for it....

        1. Helmud in Cambridge offers great vegetarian food.

          1 Reply
          1. my wife is a vegetarian, we went to bon savor in jamaica plain last night and it was wonderful. She was so happy to have multiple vegetarian entree options on a menu, it is quite rare!

            1. My favorite vegetarian tastings are Oleana, Craigie and Ten Tables. L'Espalier also does a vegetarian tasting menu that is excellent but significantly more expensive than the others listed here. Here are a couple links that may help:

              1. YoMa, the Burmese place in Allston, has an entirely separate vegetarian menu. It's delicious food and VERY reasonable.

                1. I second VeeVee in JP. Very well-prepared and imaginative veg. meals.

                  1. For the first time in 18 years my vegetarian wife had a difficult time narrowing down which veg-head-friendly dishes she wanted during a recent dinner at Rocca., specializing in the Ligurian region of Italy.

                    Even better she couldn't decide which of the 3 dishes she ordered was the best.

                    Definitely worth a try if you're looking to go beyond the basic pasta.


                    3 Replies
                    1. re: pondrat

                      That is good info for a non-meat eater. Thanks. BTW - don't ever take your wife to Kansas City. Never in my life have I had such a hard time getting food without meat. I ordered a salad and it came piled with bacon (not listed as an ingredient) because the restaurant made their own bacon (I know, yummy if you can eat it). I lived on french fires.

                        1. re: kate used to be 50

                          Even worse I took her on an assignment to the Soviet Union back in the late 80's during the winter following one of the worst fruit and vegetable growing/harvest seasons in their history. Caviar was dished out like cheap jam, but lettuce was nowhere to be found. She spent the entire time eating at the first Baskin Robbins joint venture in the dingy basement of our hotel. Fortunately they had 31 flavors and potato chips. She left after that fist week of my 2 year stint ! The veggie dinner at Rocca was but part of my penance 20 years later :)

                      1. Martsa in Davis Square is a great option for good vegetarian food too.

                        Martsa On Elms
                        233A Elm St, Somerville, MA 02144