Restaurant Review: Dao Palate

February 15, 2010

Hi all,

Today I’m writing you with a restaurant review today, from the restaurant Caitlin and I dined at last night in celebration of Valentine’s Day and the Chinese New Year: Dao Palate in Brooklyn, in the Gowanus/Park Slope area. I’m just going to cut to chase and tell you all up front that this restaurant was FANTASTIC, probably the best dinner restaurant I’ve been to in NYC yet. It bills itself as “Pan-Asian Vegan Cuisine”, and the menu is creative, delicious, and has lots of variety. From start to finish, our meal was pitch perfect, but this is of course only a small sampling of all the menu has to offer. But here is what we had; apologies in advance for the lowish quality of these photos.

Appetizer #1: Miso Soup

This miso soup was actually just included with one of our dinners, but it was the first thing they brought out, so it became our de facto first appetizer. Now miso soup is not generally a flashy soup, but it still can be done right and wrong. Fortunately, this soup was done right, very right. I don’t know what did it (but the quality of the miso used was probably involved), but this soup was extremely well executed. It was a great way to start off the evening, and we enjoyed with a nice pot of Ambrosia White Plum tea—yum!

Appetizer #2: Crispy Watercress & Soy Cheese Wontons

These wontons were our first appetizer proper, and they were quite the treat! Although I wasn’t in love with the soy cheese and watercress filling, these were still very very good, and they were topped with a deliciously tangy and spicy mango sauce.

Appetizer #3: Yam & Taro Tempura

Caitlin was craving some taro early in the day, and so we were happy that there was a taro appetizer on the menu, and even happier when we tried it. This was a very straightforward tempura, but done perfectly, and served with a tasty tempura sauce.

Entree #1: Mango Soy Protein

This big plate was a lovely mix of mango, zucchini, peppers, turnips, onion, and soy protein medallions served in a mellow plum sauce. Although this was probably the low point of the meal for me, that was just because everything else was so amazing. I really enjoyed the sauce, and the mix of vegetables and fruit and soy was a fantastic combination.

Entree #2: Bibimbap

This was probably the highlight of the evening for me. For those that don’t know, Bibimbap is sort of like Korean hotpot (but for more details, check out its Wikipedia page). Dao Palate’s vegan variation was anything but ordinary, however, including: avocado slices, pork-style seitan, hijiki seaweed, spinach, kimchi, fried rice, and kimchi sauce. This was simply amazing. I think if and when I go back, I will want to order it; it was just that good.

Dessert: Avocado Soy Milk Smoothie

What better way to end a meal than with a tall avocado smoothie? I can’t think of one (although Caitlin might suggest that this would’ve been better with a little chocolate sauce added in).

Aside from all this amazing food, Dao Palate also features a pleasant and hip decor (albeit it a little for picture taking), with attractive wall decorations and tableware. The staff were very nice and very attentive, and to top everything else off, they included a rose with our check—it was Valentine’s, after all!

I have to say that I really couldn’t’ve been happier with Dao Palate. Plus, it isn’t even that expensive: entrees were about $12 each, and apps were around $6. And don’t think that you have to be a vegan to enjoy this place—Dao Palate will please omnivores and herbivores alike. In short, if you’re in the Brooklyn/NYC area (it’s easily accessible by subway—right across from a Q stop), go to Dao Palate. You won’t be disappointed.

Until we eat again,


One comment

  1. […] It’s not! Caitlin gave me the idea for this while I was visiting (possibly in response to our delicious Valentine’s Day dinner of Bibimbap?), and seeing as I still had some kimchi left in the fridge, I decided to give it a go today. It […]

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