V-Note (Upper East Side) is no exception. I dined there over Christmas weekend and could not have been more pleased with the elegant atmosphere, personable service, and extensive wine selection. The food was delicious and beautifully presented. Everything is vegan, organic, and mostly kosher. V-note also offers a separate gluten-free and nut allergy menu. My dining partner and I both enjoyed our tofu entrees, as well as the carrot-ginger soup du jour. It was a perfect evening.
|The soup du jour was carrot-ginger.|
|Pistachio and pepper dusted tofu with lemon-truffle emulsion and frisee salad with beet vinaigrette|
|Tofu "salmon" and mushroom scallops with dill leek sauce, black rice, fennel and broccollini in white wine mushroom reduction|
On Christmas Day I returned to an old favorite, Hangawi (Koreatown), a vegetarian (mostly vegan) Korean restaurant, which also offers a separate gluten-free menu. Fortunately we made reservations well in advance because the place was booked all night long. Hangawi's hot stone bowls are perfect on a cold night!
|Avocado stone bowl with rice, vegetables, tofu, and miso sauce|
Finally, for a delicious casual meal in a place that your omnivore friends will surely love, check at the Caracas Arepa Bar (East Village), where you can try an authentic Venezuelan corn meal cake stuffed with your favorite ingredients (TIP: go early or be prepared to wait in line, as the Manhattan location is quite small). The menu includes many clearly-marked vegetarian items, and baked tofu can be substituted for meat in most of the the non-vegetarian arepas. I loved "La Mulata," which came with grilled white cheese, jalapenos, black beans, sauteed red peppers, and fried sweet plantains.
|"La Mulata" arepa stuffed with grilled white cheese, jalapenos, black beans, and sauteed red peppers|