Dining in DC – Dining with a Vegan edition
I should start by saying that I eat everything. Pig blood ice cream? Bring it on! So when a vegan friend was visiting me recently, I was in a fix. What were we going to eat? Thankfully, more and more restaurants in the area have some kind of vegan option, so although we have divergent food preferences, we can still dine out together and have a delicious meal. Here is a roundup of some DC eateries that offer excellent vegan options.
- Eatonville (2121 14thStreet NW) – Specializing in Creole cuisine, this U street corridor restaurant offers a number of vegan entrees and sides that mesh well with the menu, including a vegan gumbo, vegan fried chicken, pan-seared tofu and various sides. It doesn’t hurt that they have a great cocktail list as well.
- Science Club (1136 19th Street NW) – This all vegetarian restaurant and lounge near Dupont Circle has delicious vegan options and a great weekday happy hour to go with it. Their homemade vegan burger is a crowd favorite and the mushroom stuffed with quinoa is a delicious and hearty dish.
- Mandu (1805 18th Street NW and 453 K Street NW) – Both locations of this Korean restaurant feature flavorful vegan items on the menu. Steamed or fried vegetable dumplings followed by a tofu bibimbap are sure to satisfy any palate.
- Smoke and Barrel (2741 18th Street NW) – Vegan BBQ in DC! Smoke & Barrel offers vegan BBQ tofu, vegan wings and a number of vegan sides. Their smoked BBQ tofu sandwich and sweet potato and oat burger are popular. They even have a vegan brunch on the weekend.
- Equinox (818 Connecticut Avenue NW) – Equinox is one of just a few fine dining establishments that offer vegan options, and is a must try for any vegan looking for a special occasion meal. While they always have a vegetarian tasting menu, Chef Todd Gray is always happy to prepare vegan tasting meals for dinner upon request using locally grown seasonal ingredients as much as possible.
- Todd Grays Muse (500 17th Street NW)– Another restaurant by Chef Todd Gray, this café at the Corcoran Gallery of Art also features seasonal local ingredients with several vegan options. Try the marinated chickpea wrap or Vegetable Samosas. They also have a special vegan brunch menu the 4th Sunday of every month complete with vegan deviled eggs, chick pea burgers, and pumpkin pancakes!
Casa Oaxaca (2106 18th Street NW) – This modern Mexican restaurant in the heart of Adams Morgan offers a separate vegan menu with over 10 vegan items such as vegan Chile Rellenos and tricolor quesadillas. They even have a vegan version of Tres Leches , made with coconut milk! Vegan or not, you will not be disappointed with Casa Oaxaca.
- Rogue 24 (922 N Street NW)– This upscale culinary experience features a progression of either 16 or 24 small courses at each meal. And yes, with a week’s notice, they can provide this 24 course gastronomic journey vegan style as well. This is guaranteed to be one of the best foodie experiences you will have, all the while watching the amazing artistry of the chefs in the open kitchen.
- Founding Farmers (1924, Pennsylvania Avenue NW) – This popular downtown restaurant offers a mouth-watering selection of vegan dishes on their menu. Try the vegan bacon burger, polenta with roasted red peppers and eggplant, or the tomato cider glazed meatloaf. Wash your meal down with chief mixologist Jon Arroyo’s creative cocktails, and start thinking about when you are coming back.
- Pho 14 (1436 Park Road NW) – This Columbia Heights Vietnamese restaurant serves a 100% vegan broth on any meat free soup. They even have a vegan pho! Add in bok choy, tofu, bean sprouts, carrots and other vegetables of your choice. A perfect meal for the cold days of winter.
- Meridian Pint (3400 11th Street NW)– This popular Columbia Heights establishment which is perfect for catching up with a big group of friends offers several vegan dishes. You will find dishes like Quinoa stuffed acorn squash and a homemade lentil burger with sweet potato fries. Choose from an amazing selection of American craft beers to go with your meal and enjoy the amazing atmosphere.
- Duccinis pizza (1778 U Street NW)– Pizzeria with vegan cheese options for their pizzas. For those nights of debauchery, Duccini’s also serves DC’s only vegan Jumbo slice available Saturday nights starting at 10 pm. Need more to soak up all that indulgence – go for the vegan cheese fries!
Other noteworthy mentions in the District are Dukem (Ethiopian – lentils and veggie dishes along with injera, viagra online which is a fermented Ethiopian pancake), BONmi (Vietnamese fast casual restaurant with chile-garlic tofu and marinated butternut squash sandwiches), and Ghana Café (separate vegan menu of Ghanain stew and fried plantains). Sticky Fingers, a vegan bakery in Columbia Heights is a popular place for exquisite vegan baked goods.
If you want to venture outside the District, Thanh Van in the popular Eden center is an all vegan Vietnamese restaurant with fresh ingredients and delicious spicy noodle soups.
Another popular vegan-only restaurant in the area is Great Sage, located about 30 minutes outside DC. This upscale establishment is usually packed with eaters eager to try their unique and completely vegan offerings.
Whether you are vegan or not, it is sure that there are some standout vegan dishes in the DC area. What are some of your favorites?
As a little girl, Aparna remembers sneaking pots and ladles from the kitchen to her room and pretending to add and stir imaginary ingredients. Grown up now, Aparna is still a foodie at heart. Her day is spent in the corporate world, but you can find her eating her way around the District at night. When not obsessing over food, she can be found playing a drum with Batala Washington, shopping for jewelry or planning her next vacation. Aparna is also a contributor at Borderstan. You can follow her on Twitter @aparnakris