A couple of weeks ago, my wife, daughter, and I headed up to New York City. It was the first time in nearly four years that my wife and I had been there and Rasine’s first time ever. We were only in town for one day and one night, but we had an excellent time and can’t wait to go back. A few, quick impressions of our culinary experiences this time around:
Though not a vegan pizza place, the Two Boots listing on Supervegan indicated that they had a number of vegan choices, so we stopped by for a few slices.
When I stepped to the counter and asked if they had any vegan pizzas made, the guy indicated that they didn’t and gave off the vibe that he didn’t want to bother making one, either. I gave him a disappointed look and said, “Oh, you don’t?” followed by a pregnant pause. He then said, tersely, “OK, I’ll make one.” He didn’t ask what we wanted on it or anything, so we crossed our fingers and waited.
What we got was one of the best vegan pizzas we’ve ever had. It was cheeseless, but they seemed to have taken every possible vegetable from their kitchen (and maybe a few from next door) and threw it on a pizza. The result was a slice piled ridiculously high that seriously hit the spot.
We knew for sure that we were going to Lula’s Sweet Apothecary for dessert, so the next trick was finding a nearby restaurant for dinner. There were a few options, but we settled on Lan Cafe, a vegetarian (and very nearly vegan) Vietnamese restaurant that serves up veggie pho, half a dozen varities of banh mi sandwiches, vegetarian banh xeo pancakes, and every other traditional Vietnamese favorite you can imagine. The food was excellent, as was the company (we met up with a childhood friend of my wife’s that she hadn’t seen in 20 years). My banh mi with grilled seitan was perfect and my wife thoroughly enjoyed her banh xeo with mock pork. Rasine, as you can see below, dug the summer roll appetizer:
If there’s any spot in New York that’s worth the hype, it’s Lula’s. The Supervegan page is one glowing review after another stating that the homemade ice cream is equalled only by the friendly service of the two proprietors. For those that haven’t heard, Lula’s is an all-vegan ice cream parlor (one of two in the city!) that looks like an authentic, old school ice cream parlor (and not in the kitchy way, at all). To get a good feel for the vibe, check out this excellent photoset.
As soon as we entered, the owners told us, “Let us know if there’s anything you want to sample.” And sample we did. I eventually settled on a malt (a MALT! REALLY!) made with cake batter ice cream. Huyen and Rasine split a simple, but tasty, mint chocolate chip cone. I’m pretty sure that on our next trip to the city, we’ll be coming here each night.
Yay for Lula’s!
As an added bonus, I was lucky enough to catch up with the world famous Brownbird Rudy Relic. It was great to finally meet him in person.
And while we’re at it, I thought I’d throw in a video of an amazing performance of his in Australia last December. Be sure to check out his entire set, available for streaming online.
(special thanks to Rich, Jason, and Deb for the help and suggestions with regards to restaurants and parking!)