100 best New York restaurants: Pure Food and Wine
100 best New York restaurants: Kajitsu
Vegetarian food isn’t hard to come by in New York—if you know where to look. This list reflects the best New York restaurants that take pride in their meat-free menus, from Indian buffets to high-concept cooking. Did we miss your favorite vegetarian or vegan restaurant in New York? Join the conversation in the comments.
RECOMMENDED: Full list of 100 best New York restaurants
The dishes delivered to your table—whether out on the leafy patio or inside the chic red-walled dining room—are minor miracles, not only because they look as gorgeous as they taste, but because they come from a kitchen that has no stove. Everything at Pure is raw and vegan—from the Thai lettuce wraps to the lasagna, a rich stack of zucchini, pesto and creamy “cheese” made from cashews. Wines, most of them organic, are superb, as are the desserts— especially the confoundingly creamy tiramisu.Read more
Diners often compare eating great food to a religious experience, but at Kajitsu—possibly New York's only kaiseki restaurant to offer the centuries-old Zen Buddhist vegetarian cuisine known as shojin, from which modern-day Japanese cooking is thought to have developed—there's something literal in the restaurant's connection to the divine. The sparse, hushed interior suggests a reverence for nature that is also expressed in the food. For those accustomed to bold flavors, the preparations can at first seem understated to a fault. But with each jewellike course, the meal emerges as an artful meditation on simplicity and seasonality. A clear soup with white yam harbors grassy yomogi (Japanese mugwort) paste; a mochi orb, speckled with bits of crisp lotus root, contrasts nicely with a dab of preserved-plum sauce; and wedges of grilled fresh bamboo shoots leaning against their own husks are mildly sweet. Though nothing we ate shouted for attention, all the subtleties added up to a memorable, if not exactly sacred, meal.Read more