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Feb 7, 2011 09:06 AM

Raw / Vegetarian

I've been asked by a friend to find some recommendations for Raw food or Vegetarian options. (She has a mainly vegetarian diet but also eats fish or chicken (not raw of course!) ). Potentially anywhere in Manhattan, open at lunch time, and reservations not usually required. Any type of cuisine would probably be acceptable.
Sorry not to be more specific but if you can suggest a few names, I'll do further research for her.
Thanks, Pete

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  1. There is a great vegetarian Korean restaurant she may want to check out, Hangawi. They don't offer any dishes with any meat what-so-ever, it's strictly vegetarian. I am not a vegetarian but my GF is but we both love the place.

    6 Replies
    1. re: Spiritchaser

      Thanks, that sounds promising especially as they will be staying very close by. I also thought of Zen Palate maybe - I went a few years ago, and while I probably made a bad choice of meal myself, it seems to be the kind of place she may be looking for.

      Zen Palate
      663 9th Ave, New York, NY 10036

      1. re: Pete S

        Hangawi is great. Also look into Candle 79.

        Candle 79
        154 East 79th Street, New York, NY 10021

        1. re: Pete S

          it's easy to make a bad choice at zen palate. it's tougher to make a good choice there.

          angelika's kitchen is casual and has some good stuff. even more casual is red bamboo--it's been years since i was last there, but it was cheap and tasty stuff (mostly fake-meat). i've been wanting to check out dirt candy, and would love to know about what people think.

          not a huge fan of hangawi or blossom--both too pricey and too bland. ditto souen.

          if you're ok with good vegetarian options at places that also serve meat, i'd recommend zoma, an ethiopian restaurant in harlem, that has some awesome veg dishes.

          1. re: rose water

            Thanks, I'll look into these. Certainly meat serving places are no problem. Her partner is not vegetarian, and I will also be joining them after a day or so. We had been thinking of going to an Ethiopian restaurant as they occasionally go to one where they live (Phoenix). I went to one somewhere near Greenwich Village a few years ago, but I couldn't remember the name, or where it was

            1. re: rose water

              Dirt Candy is great IMHO. But they're not open for lunch.

              For raw food, specifically, I'd recommend Pure Food and Wine. It's expensive. But raw food generally is. And the food is really good.

              Pure Food and Wine
              54 Irving Place, New York, NY 10003

              Dirt Candy
              430 East 9th Street, New York, NY 10009

        2. A bit out of left field, and your friend ain't gonna care anyways, but raw chicken... why not? I had an amazing dinner at Tori Shin a few weeks ago, and one the highlights on the menu was Tori Wasa, which is basically chicken sashimi.. Apart from a few accidental episodes at DIY barbeque joints, it was my virgin experience with raw chicken. The meat, paired with a spicy yuzu jalapeno paste and chopped scallions, was unlike anything I’d ever tasted. Buttery and mild, tender and soft, these pink slices of pristine poultry could almost have passed for raw fish, so similar was the texture. But the taste, though subtle, was unmistakably chicken. A lovely introduction to the full meal of other chicken parts to come (which is why your friend probably wouldn't care) – but it was fantastic. The essence of the bird captured elegantly without any chemical alteration; a gentle reminder of the way Nature intended her sustenance to taste.

          2 Replies
          1. re: restaurantbrat

            Thanks. I remember reading of a restaurant in Los Angeles (I think) which sold Chicken Sashimi although I don't think I've heard of it since. I'd like to try it sometime, but maybe not with a 7 hour flight the next day.
            Liked your website too and will follow along (at a distance, I'm in the UK) on Twitter!

            1. re: restaurantbrat

              Totto served this too for a while. I tried it some years back, and it was delicious, very delicate in flavor. Don't know if they still serve it. But the predictable online ewww reactions probably helped persuade them to take it off the menu. Never heard any reports of diners getting sick from it, but hysteria tends to trump facts in situations like this.

              Yakitori Totto
              251 W 55th St, New York, NY 10019

            2. Kajitsu is amazing. Check out their menu. I was just there Saturday night...


              414 East 9th Street, New York, NY 10009