Alice and Friends

October 27 2007 - 10:44 AM

Alice and Friends is a vegetarian restaurant on the north side in Edgewater. I’ve been there several times and have never had a bad meal. I’ll go as far as saying that it’s not only my go-to veggie spot, it may be my favorite restaurant in Edgewater. It’s also almost entirely vegan.

The un-meat selection consists of beef, duck, chicken alternatives and my dinner companion questioned how it was possible for someone who doesn’t eat meat to make food that tastes like meat. How can the chefs be vegetarians? Who knows but the bottom line is that the different pseudo-meats are disturbingly close to the genuine article.

I complained about Karen’s Cooked trying to make veggie alternatives
instead of dishes that played to the strengths of the ingredients. Here
it actually works, partly because they all taste so specifically
like what they’re impersonating and partly because the differences are appealing. Some ingredients have a surprising sweetness. Though the duck tastes like duck, etc.

The spicy "run away potato" dish and the Golden Harmony special were
both very stewey. The Golden was a sweet curry dish that reminded me of
kare risu a Japanese curry rice that I have enjoyed at Ginza, and the
spicy potato had a somewhat Korean flavor. The barbecued chicken leg
appetizer is tofu served on a stick and looks and tastes like chicken.
Why certain vegetarians would want to eat something so representational
of what they find appalling is beyond me. Personally I think if you can
make something that tastes as good as a meat product without the meat
you should. That being said my surprise was for dessert.

It’s vegan cheesecake and it rocks. It’s so good that I would
consider it over the genuine article almost every time. They were tight
lipped about their recipe but I figure the soy-cream cheese would be
the key ingredient. It’s by the slice and is terrific.

At previous dinners I’ve had the Himalayan bento-box with great
ingredients like chestnuts and  beautiful fruits and veggies.  A nut
sauce tops rice and un-meat skewers. The duck entrĂ©e is well…
basically duck. Every dish I’ve had has been better than just good.
There are very hearty options and I can see enjoying a fall/winter meal
easily.

If you’re a vegan drag your carnivorous friends. They’ll like it.

Alice and Friends
5812 N. Broadway

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