• quick, cheap and pleasant: green leaves (IS NOT) vegan

    August 19th, 2008quarrygirlgreen leaves (NOT VEGAN), LA restaurants

    UPDATE: we did an investigation on this place and found out their cheese is NOT VEGAN, but contains casein. other dishes at green leaves contain egg products. they have been lying about it for years. i highly suggest vegans do not eat here, green leaves is shady as fuck.

    yes, green leaves vegan is in fact one of the numerous vegan/thai restaurants with the word “vegan” in its title. but it has got something that most of eateries of its kind don’t….a great atmosphere. light, clean and open, tall windows provide a view of hillhurst, while electric guitars and flat-screen televisions adorn the walls. i’m convinced the food is also a cut above the rest, although i haven’t sampled enough dishes off of its vast menu to have an accurate opinion.

    when we went on sunday lunchtime, the place wasn’t nearly as packed as it should have been. i guess everyone was too busy lining up across the street to eat at home, which suits me! we had decided on eating healthy and passed on the onion rings appetizer (that looked SO good btw) for an order of spring rolls.

    spring rolls: fresh vegetables wrapped in noodle skin with house sauce. $4.95

    spring rolls: fresh vegetables wrapped in noodle skin with house sauce. $4.95

    the spring rolls were pretty damn good, but the best thing was, they came packed with a little surprise. the menu didn’t mention anything about soy meat inside, yet they were stuffed with with some kind of protein as well as fresh vegetables! light and refreshing, exactly what you’d expect from a guilt-free appetizer. the sweet, peanuty sauce was lovely as well.

    as a main course, we opted to share the seitan wrap. i’m always interested to see how each of these thai/vegan places makes a wrap, because each restaurant has its own variation. green leaves’ seitan wrap was right up there, almost as good as the one at the vegan joint. what i did like about this specific version, is that it was rolled with a flour tortilla-like lavash, rather than a wheat chapati-style bread.

    seitan wrap: romaine lettuce, seitan, avocado, tomato, alfalfa sprouts served with tahini sauce. $6.45

    seitan wrap: romaine lettuce, seitan, avocado, tomato, alfalfa sprouts served with tahini sauce. $6.45

    what kinda irked me about this wrap though, is that it didn’t seem like it was filled with seitan, but rather soy chicken or some other crazy fake animal. i’m used to seitan that tastes like tough, chewy wheat meat and is dark brown. this was much softer and lighter in color. it still tasted great, just not what i was expecting. of course, i completely soaked it in a delicious mixture of tahini and chilli-garlic from the hot sauce carousel.

    granted, we didn’t eat very much between us, but i was still pretty impressed when the check arrived and it was under $13. there aren’t many places you can sit in a hip little spot looking out at los feliz and finish off 2 plates of vegan food for less than a dub. i will definitely be returning to green leaves, and i hope to get something really unhealthy to make up for those fresh spring rolls. i’m thinking onion rings, a quesadilla, or some pancakes…maybe all 3.

    stay tuned.

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7 responses to “quick, cheap and pleasant: green leaves (IS NOT) vegan” RSS icon

  • I’ve been to Green Leaves a handful of times, but it’s always been average at best. Now I just stick with what I know. Flore for “american” food and Vegan House for thai. But the spring roll pictures do make me hungry…

  • kevin, isn’t flore always packed? what about pure luck? vegan house…that’s the other one on sunset right? in silverlake? by the hotel? i liked what i ate there but the atmosphere wasn’t up to par. i haven’t been there since ’07 though. maybe about time i went back!

  • nice job with the spring rolls photo- pretty!

  • I go to Green Leaves all the time!! It’s not the most interesting stuff in the world, but it’s perfect for quick, hearty, cheap-ass, simply yummy grub! The wraps in particular are a pretty good deal for the price.

  • i loved green leaves. for the longest time, there were rumors of the cheese AND soy meats not being vegan. then supposedly those rumors were true, and the menu ACTUALLY was veganized. the huge VEGAN banner went up out front.
    however, i have a million issues with the cheese. for the past few months, EVERY time i’m in, i’ve asked to see the ingredients. they ALWAYS tell me they don’t have the box, they threw it away.
    let’s talk about what they say they use for cheese. they claim it’s follow your heart, and guess what, i used to order follow your heart wholesale, and not only is the box labeled, but every long block of cheese within that box (several come in a single box). so unless they receive the box, immediately not only take all the blocks out of the box but for some reason unwrap the plastic off every block of cheese that same moment, which makes NO sense, there is no real reason to NEVER have an ingredient label SOMEWHERE.
    on several occasions, they have all of a sudden acted like they don’t speak english when i ask about the cheese, when they’ve been talking to me totally fine during my entire trip there.
    last week, they told me to come back the next day, after the server i asked then asked several other workers about my request. supposedly they were receiving a new order in the next day…on a saturday. i came back, and guess what? not only did the same server pretend she had no idea what i was talking about, they magically had unwrapped all the blocks of “follow your heart” again.
    uh huh. completely shady.
    funny, this cheese doesn’t taste like follow your heart, and it definitely stretches much more. amazing. they must have magicians on staff to alter every single thing about follow your heart like that! wow!
    makes me curious if the soy meats were actually changed, or if they’re still using the same crap with eggs in it that they were before, when the first rumors started.
    also, as a gluten-intolerant vegan, they have severe issues about listing things as “gluten-free” when they are made with kamut flour.
    green leaves, kamut is NOT gluten-free. you’re going to poison someone with your mislabeled advertising.
    this really bums me out. i frequented this place for years after they “actually” became a “vegan” restaurant. the male server i adore even gave me a clock (?) for christmas…why? beats me, i was dining alone. totally strange, but appreciated.
    unfortunately, i just don’t trust them. between the “follow your heart” mystery cheese and “gluten-free” kamut pancakes, i don’t have much reason to.
    vegans, choose wisely, and question the crap out of these people!

  • I’ve been to green leaves three times in the last two months, because they have such an extensive gluten free menu. It’s bad that they’re deceiving people, but it seems to me they’re just confused. I don’t like mock meats anyway, not could I get any of the items with cheese. If you realize which things may not be vegan, then just get those. At least they cater to gf people, most vegan restaurants have one or two things I can eat, and they have no idea what I’m taking about when I ask if there’s wheat in their soy sauce.

    The kamut thing is troubling, but I already knew kamut had wheat, they should change the label to low-gluten for that.

  • Yes, Green Leaves has some very delicious, gluten-free dishes! Plus, the one in West Hollywood, which we frequently call for delivery, has a very polite staff as well as quick delivery. My partner and I LOVE this restaurant! (We have never eaten at the Green Leaves in Los Feliz or called there for delivery, as we do not live in that area.)

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