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 Post subject: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Wed Nov 06, 2013 1:52 pm 
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So, both my family and my husband's family are abandoning us for Thanksgiving this year. We've decided to do a weekend trip to Philly to make up for it and are trying to decide whether to be there on Thanksgiving or wait until Friday to go. The determining factor is whether or not we can find a great place to eat out on Thanksgiving.

It looks like Vedge is closed (or totally booked, hard to tell from open table) and I'm not sure where else would be open, vegan friendly and suitably festive. I'm not tied to traditional thanksgiving foods - anywhere awesome with good vegan options works. My preference is for someplace at least a little fancy, but that's flexible.

I can think of New Harmony, Sahara Grill and the Abbaye as other vegan friendly places, but they're not special event-type restaurants. I used to have good luck getting vegan stuff made at Starr restaurants, but are they still accommodating? Which ones are still good? I'm sure there are tons of newer places that I don't know about (I moved away more than 10 years ago and haven't been back that much).

Any suggestions are appreciated!


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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Thu Nov 07, 2013 7:21 pm 
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Darn I would have said Vedge. (It's worth a call though to see if they are open Friday; opentable doesn't show their happy hour tables.) Hmmm. I would call Zahav (currently Philly's #1 restaurant, it's Israeli and vegan-friendly). And I would kind of love Thanksgiving at New Harmony. It's not special eventy, true, but Ming is so welcoming and friendly that maybe he'll make it special, if open.

What are some fancy restaurants...what's that place up in West Philly, Marigold Kitchen? I liked that but it's been a while. What about Ethiopian?
As for Starr, last time I went to Buddakan (like 3 years ago) they still only offered their veggies in birds nests for vegans. Lame. Morimoto apparently has a lot of vegan options, including a crazy popular tofu dish they make table-side. I loveeed Amada. And Cuba Libre has a lot of vegan options, someone said.

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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Fri Nov 08, 2013 8:32 am 
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Thanks! Sadly, Vedge is totally booked at any reasonable times for eating all weekend (I get cranky and can't wait til 10pm for dinner).

You're totally right about New Harmony, I used to love going there.

I haven't heard of Marigold Kitchen or Amada, I'll check those out. Ethiopian sounds great too (I'll look for recs on the board unless you've got a specific place in mind). I think I'll keep Morimoto & Cuba Libre as backups if the others aren't open since I'm pretty sure they will be.


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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:01 pm 
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I emailed Marigold Kitchen and they told me that they can't accommodate vegans. Sucks that their policy seems to have changed since you went - it looked like it could be really cool.

Zahav's not open on thanksgiving itself but looks great for another day - thanks for the recommendation!

I found an Indian place that looked pretty good that's open on thanksgiving, so we're going with that. Now to figure out where to eat the rest of the time we're in town (aside from the sahara grill since all I really want to eat is their combo plate).


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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:05 pm 
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Sucks about Marigold! But I'm glad you found something! So how many other Philly meals do you have to fill? Is there any chance for Vedge? You can try going right at opening at 5pm for the happy hour tables they keep open. Also, you have to go to Blackbird for sandwiches and wings. And New Harmony !

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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Thu Nov 14, 2013 8:27 am 
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I think we will try to squeeze into vedge at 5 - I loved horizons and haven't tried vedge yet.

We've got 3 lunches, 2 breakfasts and 2 dinners.

Definitely going to blackbird and the aforementioned sahara grill. So, that along with veg and thanksgiving dinner takes up most of the meals we'll be there for. I just have to figure out breakfast (green eggs looks like the consensus choice here? is there any difference between the two locations?). Is HipCity Veg the best place to get a quick takeout lunch before getting on the train at 30th St Station (we'll probably be walking over from center city), or is there a better option somewhere reasonably close by?


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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Thu Nov 14, 2013 8:41 pm 
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Yes definitely go for HipCityVeg. It's not a bad walk to 30th Street station, maybe 15-20 minutes. (You can pass Trader Joe's on the walk as well as Nuts To You, where I buy my bulk bags of Peanut Chews.) They have a location at 40th but I'm pretty sure the walk from 30th-40th is much longer than 18th-30th, because the bridge cuts most of the 20s. You can always take a quick cab or bus if you need to.

Anywayyy Green Eggs is for vegan French toast. I think the only other option is quinoa porridge, which is a sham because it's like a tiny little teacup full of quinoa and 3 berries. Go and get the French toast because it really is amazing. I went with Dynahmite once and I ate her entire plate.

At Blackbird get the root beer BBQ wings, the tofu cubano sandwich, another sandwich with their house-smoked seitan, and the Yukon potato pizza. Or any pizza if you like Daiya (the Yukon doesn't have it). Go twice. Another sandwich worth trying is Govinda's chicken cheesesteak, and they have the biggest selection of Vegan Treats. But Govinda's service is like a special circle of hell, and with Blackbird and HipCityVeg you probably don't need to go there. Khyber Pass at Front and Chesnut? Ish? has vegan po'boys that are really good. If you do have another lunch free, I would say go to Mi Lah. Their lunch menu is completely different from their dinner menu, mostly sandwiches, and they have my favorite sandwich in Philly - their Vietnamese hoagie. It's amazing and huge and cheap, but I think they only have it on weekdays before 3pm.

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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Fri Nov 15, 2013 10:50 am 
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You are awesome, thank you! I don't like daiya all that much, so the blackbird recs are great.

Khyber Pass is also on the list - maybe we'll have to have a second late night dinner one day.

It's so hard when there's so much good vegan food in a city that you can't try everything in one trip!


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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Tue Nov 19, 2013 2:18 pm 
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Green Eggs probably is the best bet for brunch. I usually go with the breakfast burrito (make sure to specify vegan on that) which is huge like everything else there. The french toast is also good. They also have a veggie burger that ive never had and usually another option or two. cantina & dos segundos have vegan options for brunch as well. The french toast is really good but more like a breakfast/dessert. theyll also have burritos and such.

Khyber Pass is good, but id go for Royal Tavern as the tempeh club could be the best sandwhich in the city.

If your up north Memphis taproom has a bunch of odd vegan stuff including a gyro plater that i had a week or so ago that was really good as well as spegatti sandwhich, veggie burger, tofu club, and vegan cheesecakes that they make inhouse.

Cedar Point does a good happy hour with half off veggie wings (ask for them vegan) and cheap beer during the week too

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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Fri Nov 22, 2013 7:59 am 
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awesome, thanks Eric! I really want to go to Memphis Taproom, but I doubt we'll find ourselves in the neighborhood on this trip. The royal tavern sounds great - I do love a tempeh club!


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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 24, 2013 6:31 pm 
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When I think of hearty-Thanksgivingy food, I think of Mi Lah. I had this cashew pot pie thing that was to die for. BYOB too, woo!

I need to eat out in the city at all these places more often.


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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 30, 2013 8:41 pm 
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so, we're back from our trip - thanks for all of the advice!

We went to:
tashan: not super vegan friendly, but thorough about checking and pretty good despite the limited selection. It was the only place with vegan options I could find that was open on thanksgiving.

green eggs cafe: I had the french toast, which was very good and the vegan sausage, which I loved - great recommendation!

blackbird: awesome, I loved it! We shared a popeye slice and a red dawn slice and both were great. the guys who were working the afternoon we went were super nice too.

mi lah: I don't think I've ever been to such an underwhelming restaurant in my life - everything looked amazing based on the menu descriptions and tasted meh except for the sweet potato cake appetizer, which was pretty good. The desserts were pretty much inedible - cheesecake and mango sticky rice

sahara grill: I love it and go every time I'm in town. It's an omni place but is so, so good. Get the eggplant salad if you like vinegary foods - it's one of my favorite dishes of all time.


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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Mon Dec 02, 2013 12:48 pm 
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bummer about mi lah. I havnt been there in years but it sounds about right. i think the bah mi was the only thing id go back for.

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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Tue Dec 03, 2013 8:23 pm 
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Too bad, I had a good dinner at Mi Lah in the summer. But yeah, lunch is better and it's a different menu. Can't believe you didn't have wings or sandwiches at Blackbird, but glad you enjoyed your food! :) I haven't been to Sahara Grill; I really feel like I must now!

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 Post subject: Re: Thanksgiving Dinner at a Restaurant?
PostPosted: Wed Dec 04, 2013 7:23 pm 
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We were dying to try the wings and sandwiches at blackbird, but we had just eaten at green eggs 3 hours earlier so we couldn't manage much food. next time though.


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