Thanh Tinh Chay courts locals with a $5 baseline price for nearly all dishes. It’s a bargain tempting to everyone—vegan or not.
Van Bui had never run a restaurant, but the need for one was clear.
Cost is a large hurdle for those exploring vegan and vegetarian dining, and while City Heights is filled with affordable Vietnamese restaurants, most have limited options for those seeking meat-free meals.
The lack of affordable vegetarian food in City Heights (and beyond) begged for a solution.
Summer Rolls are one of the great culinary inventions in the history of man. A perfect package of crunchy vegetables, fragrant herbs, and the soft but snappy bite of rice paper enriched with the sweetness of some sort of sauce. At Purple Mint Vegetarian Bistro I appreciate that they don’t dilute the rolls with extra noodles, offering rice paper stuffed with tofu, purple mint, lettuces, basil, jicama, and carrots. The sauce, although spiked with crushed peanuts and pickled carrots, runs bland and benefits greatly from a kick of hoisin ($5.95).
A sputtering fountain in the shadow of the Disney Music Hall marks the entrance to the softly open Au Lac DTLA. Retaining the opulence of the former First & Hope, the modern Art Deco dining room is a refreshing upgrade from the Fountain Valley location. We take our seats in the dinning room as Chef Ito takes the helm of the kitchen. From there he executes a handful of favorites plus a few new tricks. Still in the dawn of the restaurant (official opening on January 1, 2015), Chef Ito’s working menu promises many more new item to come. … First Look: Au Lac DTLA (Los Angeles, CA)