The Vegetarian House
So Sunday night, after enjoying a leisurely afternoon at Kevin's for Second Sunday brunch, we headed out to run some errands and finally decided to stop for dinner on the way home. Since our local Mongolian Barbecue was closed, we opted to try the slightly daunting Vegetarian House on Santa Clara. This place is known throughout San Jose for serving a hearty helping of religion with it's food. Braced for uncertain food offerings and a heap of religious literature, we headed in. It's a clean, well lighted place, serenely painted in light blue and white, with a bar that serves only non-alcoholic drinks and a baby grand covered in literature about Madam Ching Hai and the path to immediate enlightenment. I picked up a copy of their book to read over dinner (offered generously in a wide range of languages for free). We ordered Spring Rolls, Thai Curry Soup, and Crispy Joy Luck Noodles for dinner. Turns out, our entire meal was not merely vegetarian, but vegan. And it was really really good. In my past experience with vegan food, it's usually mediocre at best, and frequently frought with terrible aftertastes and unappealing textures. Not the case this time. Each of these three dishes were tasty treats that fully satisfied me. If these folks cooked for me every day, I could easily be a vegetarian. And really, the religious stuff was omnipresent, but not overwhelmingly annoying. The only thing I'd edit out is the big tv over the bar showing a constant stream of Madam Ching Hai's lectures. Other than that, it could be easily overlooked. Now I can't wait to go back and drag Malaya there. I don't think there's a thing on the menu that she can't eat there. Woohoo!