Not All Who Wander Are Lost… Unless You’re Us
July 27, 2010
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You know the phrase: When in Boston…. visit Chinatown?
Despite having our map (as well as a good dose of shame for our touristy ways) and the help of two friendly subway workers, we still got lost. But it wasn’t our fault – the one station we needed just happened to be shut down for construction. We totally didn’t have to ask the same woman for directions twice. Of course not. Despite our setbacks, we discovered that the subway in Boston, called the T, is so much easier to get around on than the one in New Yawk. Everything is color coded for people who tend to get lost. AKA, me.
When we eventually made it to Chinatown we just had to make like tourists (because the map just isn’t enough) and do this:
I so wish I was Asian.
(By the way, that’s how I normally look on vacay. I call it my “trying to pass it off as curly” hair. Hot.)
At least we didn’t have fanny packs. I couldn’t find mine….what a shame.
For real, you guys, Chinatown was friggin awesome. Maybe I just think this because I’d never been in a legitimate one before, or maybe because I have such a deep love for Asians and their culture. But the whole little area (it wasn’t very big at all) didn’t even feel like Boston. It was, dare I say, magical. Even though there was a lot of dirt, noise, and quite a few creepers. Oh yeah, and the shop owners got pissed that I had a camera in my hand even though I wasn’t going to take oodles of pictures of their goodies.
I just wanted this stunning display of good grammar.
Or maybe they only have one kite and one umbrella to sell?
I <3 bad grammar.
I also <3 those giant lanterns that are all over the place, too… so this impulse buy (thanks again, Roomie!) became my birthday present.
I cannot tell a lie. Our room is gonna be bangin’ this semester.
After two hours of window shopping and sneaky picture taking in the stores, we were HANGRY. My vegan senses must have been tingling, because I had previously spotted a sign that said “Thai” and “vegan” in the same sentence. In fact, I had spotted it the moment we arrived in Chinatown. Way to go, VeganSenses. Man, do I love Boston.
You MUST eat here.
It was a little sketchy, to be honest. The restaurant, My Thai Vegan Cafe, was supposed to be on the second floor, but I think it was on the third. That or the stairs were magically growing as we walked up them. I was immediately hit with the horrid stench of cigarettes upon entering the stairwell and my legs were screaming at me. We’d walked over 35 miles in five days at this point, stayed up far too late, and had regular gym and sauna sessions. Stairs still aren’t my friends.
But the epic mountain stairwell climb was worth it.
Talk about cute!
Roomie and I were the only ones eating, which is why the restaurant was empty, if you’re wondering. What, you mean you don’t eat dinner at 4:30 PM?!
The menu was huge and I was indecisive. It was a deadly combination.
This is the takeout menu…. there was more on the other side, and this didn’t include the selection of 100% fully vegan and delicious cakes, desserts, and bubble teas!
After perusing the menu for a good twenty minutes (the poor, poor lady who was serving us kept staring and wondering if we were illiterate), I decided to start off with Temple Soup.
A big ass bowl of warm coconut milk, butternut squash, sweet potato, pinto beans, and peanuts.
Holy. Crap. You guys, this was sweet and savory and slightly salty all at the same time. At first, I was hit with just the coconut milk, but that was quickly followed with the crunch and saltiness of a peanut and then the sweet, soft texture of the roasted butternut squash. And for 3.25 this was one heckuva bowl of soup.
Roomie got the miso soup. Classic.
I need to learn how to make this stuff.
I couldn’t believe I’d ordered a main course after this “starter” soup. My stomach was already in contented fullness, squash and sweet potato swimming away inside. But they’d have budge up and make room for the Pad Thai.
I’ve probably said this phrase far too many times for it to actually mean anything by now, but this dish was one of the best I’ve ever had. I think it’s the fact that it comes from an all-vegan kitchen, so there isn’t the bitter taste of worry in every bite… AKA “Oh lawd, is there oyster sauce in here?”
The worst part is that I was hoping to save some for breakfast lunch the next day, but there was no way that was happening. It was too good to stop eating it. I’m just that kind of person…. a pig.
Roomie got the curried vermacelli. Smelled mm mmm good.
Of course, after massive obliteration comes massive full stomachs.
But that didn’t stop me from ordering something so fantastic, so amazing, so mindblowingly delicious that I just HAD to save it for later so that I could fully enjoy it. And I never do that.
Obviously home made (with love), this was fresh and sweet, but not overly so. The menu said their cakes were sweetened without refined sugars, so I was worried the cake would be overly agave-sweetened (I don’t like the stuff as much as good ole maple syrup), but it wasn’t. There was the perfect balance between the dark chocolate, a hint of coffee, and sweetness.
This sucker was, without a doubt, the best vegan cake I’ve ever had. I don’t care how many times I’ve said that phrase now, ’cause I’m pretty sure nothing is going to come close to this cake for a looooong time. I don’t know how this baby lasted 12 hours in the hotel room, untouched by human hands.
Oh yeah, I do. It was the pad thai in my belly.
Nevertheless, I had the most decadent breakfast ever the next day to hold me over as we once again got lost on the T.
Do you have a great sense of direction, or do you tend to get lost a lot?