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Newtown's Best Vegetarian Thai
Last night I got takeaway from Green Palace, a Vegetarian Thai place in Newtown. I have loved it for years and years, and it is worthy of such loyalty. As I was walking to it (I always get confused and think it is where Green Gourmet is, so then I have to double back) I remember when there was a fire or something a few years ago and how worried I got that it wouldn’t re-open. So, that black & yellow banner proclaiming “Vegetarian Food” always gives me a satisfied feeling.
This is the typical Thai restaurant, right down to the back alleyway leading to a (surprisingly clean!) bathroom. There are Buddha portraits everywhere and it seems very… earnest (Vina Vietnamese is very earnest, too). They have a takeaway counter as well as sit-down tables, and their front counter has a whole bunch of vegetarian and/or vegan treats.
The menu contains the full gamut of Thai dishes, and they are all AMAZING in taste. Most Thai places are pretty restricted in which dishes you can order if you want it to not contain seafood products etc. I would be very, very wary of eating Thai if I had any sort of allergy, because the information often changes depending on who your waiter is! Also, I have been to many, many Thai restaurants who will flat out refuse to create a purely vegetarian meal saying “it won’t taste good”. They are WRONG, and Green Palace is proof.
They do use mock meat in their dishes, which I am neither for nor against. I was having this conversation with a friend over dinner tonight: some people are so anti-mock meat, but I don’t feel strongly about it myself. It’s just another type of food, right? People love/hate/are indifferent to asparagus, pumpkin, veal, lamb shanks, tuna mornay, etc etc. Actually I probably lean towards “against” because I don’t like it when food tastes/looks “too much like meat”. It feels so weird & creeps me out a little bit because I’ve been vegetarian my whole life.
If I wanted to eat meat, I would. So I don’t really need the false sense of eating meat. That said, the fake prawns (or shrimps? I don’t really know the difference) are sort of a masterpiece. And they come in a curry that also contains lychee. Which is delicious.
I’d also like to note, very vociferously, their takeaway dishes (which you can have eat-in, too) are super-amazing. They are on par to the sit down menu items in terms of satisfaction and taste. This is why I expressly thought about and chose to go there for a takeaway instead of sit down meal. Obviously there are differences, but truly my biggest dilemma is just picking 1 or 2 options from the half a dozen or so. They are all so good!
Last night I settled on the eggplant, tomato & mushroom one, as well as the crispy soy. Both were delectable.
Green Palace: 182 King St, Newtown
(p.s. does anyone else have The XX’s “Angels” stuck in their head in a loop?)