Now Introducing – The Walnut Grille!

Though I am not even close to being over the closing of Peace o Pie, I am very excited to report that the Boston area now has a brand new vegetarian eating establishment, The Walnut Grille.

The restaurant is near the Newton Highlands stop on the D line (and very close to Route 9 if you drive). It also has its own parking lot so that is a huge plus. It’s all vegetarian but everything (with the exception, I assume, of the “Artisan Cheese Plate”) can be made vegan.

I went to Walnut Grille two weeks back for the Boston Vegetarian Society‘s monthly Dining Out event, and I have nothing but good things to say.

I started with the Raw Noodle Salad:
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Love that they include olives on this!

I also had the Gobi Manchurian (one of my all-time favorite Indo-Chinese dishes):
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The only thing that could have been improved would have been if the Gobi was spicier. This dish was mild as mild can be, but also SO tasty.

My dining companions were kind enough to let me photograph some of their lovely eats as well!

This is the Highlands Gem Salad (how gorgeous is that?!)
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This was the Salad Special of the night (“Local green leaf lettuce tossed in cranberry vinaigrette, served with pears and English cucumbers, slivered almonds and parmesan cheese”)–not vegan
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And, last but not least, is what I *think* is the Coconut Tofu
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I was extremely impressed by the beautiful presentation of the dishes at Walnut Grille, and the prices are insanely reasonable. They also serve beer and wine, as well as all kinds of yummy-sounding juices and smoothies, so it really is a place you could go for a date night or a nice dinner with family or friends.

The best part is that I get to go back this evening, because Vegan Meetup is having its monthly dinner at Walnut Grille.  I can’t wait!

Red Lentil

On Monday, I had a wonderful evening out with a group of veg friends at Red Lentil in Watertown, MA.  It is an all vegetarian restaurant, with a menu full of vegan options (clearly labeled) as well as vegan-izable options (clearly explained).   My group consisted of four ovo-lacto-vegetarians and two vegans (myself included), and we were all very happy at the end of the night!

What follows is a rave review and a more photo-heavy post than I normally do, so enjoy!

Red Lentil
The interior of Red Lentil (love the bright green color!)

We started with appetizers…
Sesame Encrusted Seitan Strips
Sesame Encrusted Seitan Strips (with miso horseradish dipping sauce)

Gobi Manchurian
Gobi Manchurian

Grande Nachos
Grande Nachos (not vegan)

Then the entrees

Shepherd's Pie
Vegan Shepherd’s pie

Special Salad
Salad with mango, avocado, and grapefruit (it was on the specials menu so I’m  not sure what else exactly was in/on it…vegan though, I think)

Mexican Pizza
Mexican Pizza (not vegan)

Special Lasagne
Lasagne (also from the specials menu…not vegan)

Three Bean Burrito
Three Bean Burrito (not vegan)

And obviously, dessert!

Peach Almond Cake
Peach Almond Cake

Choco Banana Cake
Choco-Banana Cake

Carrot Cake
Carrot Cake (with one bite out of it…someone couldn’t wait!)

Whew!  I’ll start with the appetizers.  The Gobi Manchurian was awesome; I am sure that I could have eaten two plates of it by myself.  I also was a big fan of the seitan strips; the texture was dense and chewy, and I loved the complement of the scallions and especially the dipping sauce.  I didn’t eat the nachos but the others said they were pretty good.  (I think they all preferred the vegan appetizers though!)

Earlier in the day, I checked out the menu online, and when I read the description of the Shepherd’s Pie, my jaw dropped.  I knew I had to have it.  The other vegan in our party actually ended up ordering the same thing, and we both LOVED it.  Look at that picture.  No, seriously, scroll back up for a second and soak it in.  It was gorgeous.  And huge–I got two meals out of it!  But most importantly, it was delicious.  There were so many complex flavors and textures…I was in heaven.  It took alot of self-control to stop eating and save enough to take home for dinner the next day…

All of the desserts on the menu were vegan.  We decided on the three slices above to share around the table.  My favorite was the Peach Almond, second favorite was the Carrot Cake.  The Choco-banana one fell a little short of my expectations.  It seemed a little dry to me.  Also I think I just really, really liked Red Lentil’s  “cream cheese” icing, which topped both of the other slices.  Sorry for the less-than-stellar pictures of dessert…the table was so full of stuff by the time it arrived that photographing them was sort of awkward! 

I wish I lived closer to Red Lentil.  It is a little on the pricier side (for this little student’s budget) so maybe it’s good that I don’t.  I would really like to eat there again some time though!