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Recommendations - vegan eating in Washington DC

Hi everyone :)

My hubby and I are planning a trip to Washington DC for next week. I would love to hear your recommendations for places to eat. We are vegan but the restaurants themselves don't have to be vegan (although that would be great, too!) We like all kinds of food - pizza, Italian, raw, Indian, Middle Eastern, Thai, Ethiopian, etc. so all recommendations are welcome.

Thanks so much for your help!

Hi!  My favorite place for breakfast/lunch is Mark's Kitchen.  Its just outside of DC and easily accessible by the subway (a couple blocks from the Takoma Park Metro Station).  It's not fancy, but it's tasty- they offer american (tofu scrambles and yummy sandwiches) and korean food (bibimbap, curry).  I also LOVE Amsterdams Falafel shop in Adams Morgan and Soul Vegetarian Restaurant in Shaw- these aren't exactly nice, eat-in places though, but they're so good!

There are plenty of vegetarian Indian places to go (Nirvana), you MUST try Ethiopian if you're adventurous.  I've been to Addis Ababa in Silver Spring, Etete and Dukem off U Street- they are all excellent and offer veggie samplers.  Come to think of it I'm actually not sure if they're vegan, but I think I read that they are, might want to call and ask.  Java Green in Dupont is great for lunch and Asylum is really popular for brunch and dinner- the decor is a little creepy but its tasty!  Oh, also Vegetate near Chinatown is more upscale, great place for dinner- the neighborhood is a tiny bit sketchy but it's on the up and coming. Ben's Chili Bowl offers vegan burgers and chili- and they're pretty famous around here, so you might want to stop by.

You can go to http://www.vegdc.com/restaurants.php for a great list of other places.  Next weekend I'm planning to go to the Ghana Cafe and the Harmony Cafe, which I've never been to.  All in all, there are plenty of places to go and vegdc.com has an excellent guide.  I use it whenever I'm looking for something new. 

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Another vote for Java Green.  GREAT food, although crowded sometimes.

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Thanks for the recommendations! We just got back from our trip. Here's a quick review of where we went:

lunch @ Java Green - this was the first place we went to eat. I have to admit, I really wasn't very impressed. I thought it was overpriced and the portions were really small. I had a Temptation sandwich, which was grilled tempeh, avocado, tomato, soy cheese, mayo, and avo-sauce (whatever that is) on grilled wheat bread. It was tasty but the sandwich was really really small - and it cost $8. Tasty, but not 8-dollar-tasty if you know what I mean. My hubby got a sesame soy (? can't remember name of it) salad with grilled tofu. The salad was okay, but the greens were not very fresh and had that soggy-slimy texture which is kind of gross. It also had small amounts of cuke, carrot, and red pepper. I think this salad was $9 and there wasn't much to it. We shared an oatmeal cookie sandwich for dessert (around $3.75 I think) and it was good but nothing to write home about. All in all, I was really kind of disappointed with this place. Maybe it was an off day, but I left thinking it was really overpriced and just sort of average  :(

dinner @ Dukem Ethiopian - all I can say is, WOW, this place was incredible! Easily the best Ethiopian food I've ever had. We shared a 14-item vegetarian (vegan) platter and it was lick-your-fingers delicious. I think it was $21 or $22. It was fantastic. I'd highly recommend this place. The decor is nothing like other Ethiopian restaurants I've been to, though - it looks more like a wine bar or something. It's a little crowded but, hey, the food is dynamite so whatevs  ;)b

lunch @ Julia's Empanadas - totally awesome vegan empanada! Wow, it was crazy delicious. It was spiced potato, broccoli, and carrots. The dough is sooo good - almost reminded me of the buttery taste of a Ritz cracker. And only $3.75 with tax - you can't beat it. Hubby had a spinach-ricotta one (he's vegetarian) and he loved it too. Great place, wicked cheap and filling lunch.

dinner @ Vegetate - we did the 3-course fixed-price dinner, which was $25 per person. It was so elegant and tasty. We each ordered different things so we could try more stuff. Our first course was marinated beets with almond butter sauce, and lentil salad with apples. The beets rocked my socks - it was one of the best things I've ever had. I liked it so much the lentils couldn't even compare, but hubby said he liked the lentils a lot. The second course was grilled tofu, and carrot risotto. The carrot risotto had a cashew cream in it, and it was insanely delicious. The tofu was good too, but the risotto was incredible. The dessert course was apple crisp and some kind of corn pone dish. The corn pone wasn't vegan so I didn't try it, but hubby said it was good. The apple crisp was fine but nothing to write home about. All in all, I'd highly recommend the fixed-price dinner. It's really fancy food for a very good price. Neighborhood is a little sketchy and it's about a 10-minute walk from the Metro.

lunch @ Ella's Wood-Fired Pizza - good, but horribly expensive. You can only order individual pizzas, and the veggie ones we each ordered were $13.95 each. So a pizza lunch cost us almost $35 with tax and tip. Not cool. They were good but I'd definitely try a different place next time.

snacks @ Sticky Fingers - oh yeah, baby!! It's as awesome as everyone says. We tried the cinnamon roll, the oatmeal Cowvin sandwiches (kind of like an oatmeal-cream-pie-blondie), the Little Devil (chocolate cream snack cake), and a toasted almond cupcake. The cinnamon roll was great - really tasty and surprisingly light. The oatmeal Cowvin sandwiches were so good I moaned a little  8) I had to go back the next day to get another one! The chocolate cream cake and cupcake were fine but nothing special. I think the cupcake was like 80% frosting and 20% cupcake, so maybe that's why I wasn't super crazy about it.

We enjoyed our trip and plan to go back and try some other places next time. I'll definitely be going back to Dukem for Ethiopian, Julia's for an empanada, and Sticky Fingers for another Cowvin sandwich!

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