• 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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  • September 4th, 2009quarrygirlmore restaurants (not LA), portland


    one thing we rarely get to enjoy as vegans is cheap bar snacks…but at tube in portland, we can. the arty hipster haven has a badass happy hour from 5 to 10pm with $2 tall boys and loads of vegan menu items at 3 bucks or under.

    we hit up tube at around 7pm, before it got super crowded, and dined out on happy hour specials. they also were offering a full dinner menu with lots of vegan options, but we decided bar snacks would be much more special.

    my favorite dish we ordered was the professor nanotear muffin pictured above (a slice of grilled vegan ham and vegan cheese between an english muffin and homemade spicy chipotle veganaise, $3). it was thin and greasy, and not much to look at…but it sure tasted fantastic. the vegan ham/cheese/english muffin was a winning combo…soft, salty, melty and crunchy all at once.

    vegan ghost dog with mustard. $2

    vegan ghost dog with mustard. $2

    we also tried the vegan ghost dog, a simple vegan hot dog smothered in spicy mustard. now this is definitely something i could make easily at home—but for just $2 in a cool bar, i’ll take it!

    lastly, we shared the vegan taco which was freakin’ huge for 3 bucks. it came filled with tasty tofu scramble, which you can’t see in the picture because it’s covered in fresh lettuce and tomatoes. again, this thing wasn’t spectacular…but it was damn good and after eating it, i wanted another.

    vegan taco: homemade spicy tofu scramble in a grilled flour tortilla topped with shredded lettuce and vegan cheese and diced tomatoes. $3

    vegan taco: homemade spicy tofu scramble in a grilled flour tortilla topped with shredded lettuce and vegan cheese and diced tomatoes. $3

    the great thing about tube, on top of the vegan-friendly menu, is the design and atmosphere of the place. the place is super slick and super trashy at the same time. everyone who works there is beyond cool and decked out in the height of fashion, like they just stepped out of the pages of an indie rock magazine. the bar is designed to look like the inside of a television, with a green glow and curved glossy walls…and the place is plastered with cool posters and art.


    behind the table we were sitting at, there was a pop art piece on the wall with dozens of little red-eyed bunnies, and the word “fuck” scrawled several times beneath them. i dug it.

    fuck bunny

    fuck bunny

    after throwing back too many tall boys and snacking away on bar food, i decided it was time to move on to real booze. luckily, tube had a vegan white russian (my favorite drink) on the menu. i was so fucking excited about this, and i don’t know why. i’ve had thousands of vegan white russians in the comfort of my own home, but here i was with the opportunity to drink one in an ultramodern dive bar in one of the coolest cities i’ve ever visited. of course i indulged.

    vegan white russian

    vegan white russian

    tube’s vegan white russian was awesome and the bartender gave me a great pour. it would be SO DAMN EASY for all bars to offer this drink…all they need to do is stock some soy creamer behind the bar. until that day, i guess i will just dream of far away places like tube.

    so if you like dive bars, modern bars, cool design, hispters, cheap food, or good drinks…be sure to make a stop at tube when you are in portland. you will definitely have a memorable experience.


    i fucking love this place.

    18 NW Third Ave
    Portland, OR 97209
    (503) 241-8823
    open 7 days at 5pm

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