• kate’s joint: a must visit for vegans in NYC

    October 14th, 2010quarrygirlmore restaurants (not LA), NYC

    oh god, i love NYC. it’s freaking vegan paradise, lemme tell you. i have that happycow app on my iphone…you know, vegout? it’s this cool little thing you fire up and no matter where you are, it uses GPS to tell you which vegan-friendly restaurants are nearby. in LA, it usually results in a few pages of restaurants, depending on where you are in the city. in manhattan though, the app almost crashes…there are SO MANY VEGAN OPTIONS. it’s crazy. there are more vegetarian places per square foot in nyc than anywhere i’ve ever visited. anyways, this post isn’t supposed to be a vegan love letter to NYC…i am here to talk about kate’s joint!

    kate’s is an all vegetarian spot that our friends have been recommending to us for quite awhile. i’d heard nothing but good things about the restaurant, so when they showed up on the vegout app as “less than a mile away” while we were drinking in the east village, i knew it was gonna happen.

    lemme preface: kate’s has an enormous menu, but it feels more like a bar than a restaurant. they’ve got tap beer, cocktails, and a huge bar lined with stools in the main area; dining tables are lined up along the windows. this actually got me pretty excited, because i love bars much more than real restaurants. so the fact that i can think of this place as a bar with an all vegetarian menu makes me love it even more.

    we hit up kate’s on a friday at around 5pm, and it was pretty slow. i had heard they made vegan white russians (my favorite drink ever), so i ordered one right away. the waitress had no idea what i was talking about, but she went to check with the bar and immediately came back with one. SCORE! it was so good.

    vegan disco fries: covered with mama's vegan gravy and daiya cheese. $6.25

    next up, we decided to order some appetizers. we started with the decadent “disco fries,” another legend i have been hearing about from several peeps. disco fries are ridiculous: french fries topped with GRAVY AND CHEESE. WTF, why didn’t i think of this?!?! these have been at kate’s forever, but are only recently vegan-friendly. not long ago, kate switched from a casein-containing soy cheese to daiya! thank goodness, because why would a VEGETARIAN RESTAURANT have a real cheese option, AS WELL AS a non-vegan cheese option?  that makes no sense. anyways, the disco fries are available vegan now and they are amazing. by far the best thing i tried at kate’s.

    hummus rolls filled with spinach, roasted garlic, tomatoes, tahini and lemon. $6.95

    after that deep-fried, cheesy, creamy starter, we were in the mood for something lighter and shared the hummus rolls. these babies were basically little tortilla pockets filled with hummus and vegetables including spinach, garlic, and tomato. nothing earth-shattering, but damn good.

    vegan un-turkey club: un-turkey, fakin bacon, lettuce, tomato, and vegan mayo. $9.95

    we had such honorable intentions of ordering like 5 entrees from kate’s, but after the two appetizers, we could only manage to share one main course. we went with the un-turkey club, another popular item that we’d heard people rave about. the club was delicious, but IMO we have better clubs here in LA. what took this sandwich over the edge was the side of mashed potatoes, served with kate’s deadly homemade gravy (the same stuff that was on the fries). it was phenomenal.

    next time i go to kate’s, i am gonna starve myself in advance and arrive completely sober. the menu is way too drool-worthy, and the drink selection is too tempting. to say that we have unfinished business with kate’s would be an understatement.

    kate’s joint
    #58 Avenue B, New York NY 10009
    (At 4th St)
    (212) 777-7059

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12 responses to “kate’s joint: a must visit for vegans in NYC” RSS icon

  • As a local NYer myself, I would say next time you definitely need to order the buffalo chik’n.

    I’m glad they’ve updated their cheese, it was a sad scene there for a long time.

  • I don’t know why I’ve never been to Kate’s. Probably because its close to Lula’s and I’m always making a beeline for the most delicious ice cream ever. Today they had pumpkin spice and cake batter soft serve twists… 😀

  • Yeah the buffalo wings are pretty awesome, even though they are really simple. Definitely worth a try.

  • I am from Montreal and in my youth( read: pre vegan years) we had a few “home grown”(wink) specialties to enjoy including Poutine- french fries ,cheese, and gravy – a local favorite. I thought everyone knew Poutine.
    Glad to know there are vegan alternatives although the Quebecois might have a problem with the name “disco” fries;)!

  • I do love Kate’s, too. I’ve been there on each of my 4 NYC trips (multiple times during some of the visits). I’m so excited to hear about the Daiya switch because I’ll be there next month! That was always a little disconcerting about the non-vegan cheese there. Thanks for the review.

  • Been going to Kate’s for close to 14 years now, great place. Next time you need to go for brunch—the eggs (tofu) benedict and huevos rancheros are great, as are the pancakes. And like others mentioned, try the buffalo wings—they’re just rectangles of tofu, but the seasoning/coating and dipping sauce really makes them amazing.

  • I <3 Kate's Joint! I <3 Disco Fries! I've also been going to Kate's Joint for 14 years 🙂 and it's just one of those places where I feel like I'm at home.

  • Gauri Radha गौरी राधा

    In the mood for mashed potatoes after that sixth photo, looks so tempting!!

  • It’s so bizarre to see a positive review of Kate’s, from a west coaster no less! I don’t know anyone here who touches it with a ten foot pole. I was there once and the skeeve factor was pretty high.

  • @Abby Bean: Maybe it’s like how SF natives don’t like Herbivore while out-of-towners love it.

  • I was really disappointed with the vegan options in NYC. Although they were abundant the taste at every place we went to was severely lacking compared to what I can get here in Dallas. Who knew Dallas made better vegan food then New York it certainly shocked me! haha

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