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Vegan at The Brite Spot, Echo Park, Los Angeles – Post 2

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I have already talked about The Brite Spot, but I thought that I could do multiple reviews of restaurants as I make subsequent visits.  Click here to see previous posts about The Brite Spot.

The Brite Spot is a cute little diner in Echo Park that we pass all the time when visiting the in-laws.  This time, I ordered a bowl of vegan chili and vegan nachos.

When the chili first arrived, I was worried that it had beef in it because the imitation ground beef looked so much like the real thing.  I double checked with the waiter and he said it’s definitely vegan, they only make vegan chili, so you can rest assured that they haven’t mixed them up.  It was hearty and flavorful and not a bad deal at $5.50 for the cup.  It was pretty large.

The Brite Spot, Los Angeles | A Vegan in Progress

I also ordered the vegan nachos wish their awesome soy chicken.  They were great, although a little dry.  I still don’t understand why they only have a lactose free, but not vegan cheese.  They need to get on that to improve their vegan dishes.

The Brite Spot, Los Angeles | A Vegan in Progress

The soy chicken was amazing, I couldn’t get enough.  It both looked and tasted a lot like chicken.

The Brite Spot, Los Angeles | A Vegan in Progress

We’ll definitely be back.  This would a great place to meet non-vegans for dinner so that you could have a satisfying vegan meal without making a big production out of it.

Vegan at The Brite Spot, Echo Park, Los Angeles

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The Brite Spot, Los Angeles | A Vegan in Progress

The Brite Spot is a small diner located practically walking distance from my in laws’ home.  While visiting one weekend, Eric’s mom suggested we visit the establishment for dinner.  We sat on their cute little patio off of Sunset Boulevard.

The Brite Spot, Los Angeles | A Vegan in Progress

I was very pleased to see that there were vegan-friendly items on the menu and then noticed the ever so exciting “vegan menu available upon request” line at the bottom of the menu.  The vegan menu isn’t too shabby; including oatmeal, granola, fries, vegetable soup, vegan chili, nachos (strangely, without vegan cheese), 4 salads, a veggie ciabatta, 2 burgers, pasta, and enchiladas.

vegan menu - The Brite Spot, Los Angeles | A Vegan in Progress

I noticed that the standard menu listed a Veggie Club Sandwich with soy chicken, veggie bacon, soy swiss, and house made veganaise.  I was surprised to see that the club wasn’t on the vegan menu, so I inquired… the soy cheese is lactose free, but not completely vegan.

bagel burger with vegan potato salad - The Brite Spot, Los Angeles | A Vegan in Progress

I ended up ordering the Bagel Burger, which is a flame grilled soy patty (kind of a sausage consistency), lettuce, tomato, red onion, vegan cream cheese, and chipotle veganaise, on a toasted bagel with a side of Vegan Potato Salad.

bagel burger - The Brite Spot, Los Angeles | A Vegan in Progress

I loved the sandwich, but it was on the dry side.  The chipotle veganaise was good, but I think they may have been out of vegan cream cheese because I didn’t see or taste any.

vegan potato salad - The Brite Spot, Los Angeles | A Vegan in Progress

The Vegan Potato Salad tasted incredibly fresh and yummy.  I was never a fan of potato salad, but I loved this vegan version with its mix of chunky potato pieces with more mashed potatoes, fresh dill and mustard flavors.  I would order it again for sure.

French Fries - The Brite Spot, Los Angeles | A Vegan in Progress

I also had a french fry or two from my husband’s meal.  We both commented that they seemed double fried because they were crunchy without being overcooked.

If I were to give one suggestion to The Brite Spot, it would be to offer a vegan cheese option as well to add cheese to their vegan nachos as well as make a vegan club sandwich.  I mean, since when do nachos not have cheese?  And what is the point of a soy cheese that isn’t vegan?

The Brite Spot has been at this location longer than I have been familiar with the area.  Our waitress informed us that the restaurant had not changed ownership, but the owners had made significant changes to their menu.  The bottom line is that this diner is a great place for dining with omnivores.  There are more than a handful of vegan options and everyone leaves pleased.  I would definitely recommend it.

The Brite Spot, Los Angeles | A Vegan in Progress

Vegan at Mae Ploy, Silverlake, Los Angeles

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Mae Ploy is very close to Mohawk Bend, in the trendy Los Angeles neighborhood of Silverlake.  Like I said before, my husband grew up in the area and doesn’t remember it being a nightlife and cafe hub – it was a bit more unsavory back then.  However, the Silverlake and Echo Park neighborhoods are getting better and better, even in the 10 years that we’ve been together.  We have ordered Mae Ploy quite a few times for dinner with his family, but I this was my first time eating their food as a vegan.

It was Eric’s mom’s birthday and she had picked up Chinese food for everyone and didn’t want me just eating white rice and soy sauce.  She insisted that we pick up something for me on the way, so Eric yelped vegan places while I drove.  He stumbled on yelp posts for Mae Ploy mentioning their vegan options.  He tried to find a menu, but it doesn’t seem like they have much of an internet presence.  I have since found this one, but what I ordered isn’t even listed, so it must not be current.  I suggest going in person or calling them and asking all the annoying questions necessary to get what you want.  I went by the yelp suggestions and just ordered what vegan reviewers enjoyed.

Since I was ordering food from a Thai restaurant, I figured, why not try the vegan Pad Thai with Tofu.  It was very tasty and the tofu was broken up-kind of resembling the bits of egg found in non-vegan pad thai, rather than in big tofu cubes.

Mae Ploy - Vegan Pad Thai with Tofu | A Vegan in Progress

Vegan Pad Thai with Tofu

My favorite of the evening was the Garlic Pepper Tofu.  I have never had tofu flavored that well!  It was delicious, but there were just a couple of tiny slivers of carrot.  For a vegan meal, I would have liked a lot more veggies.  It came with rice and was a plenty big meal.  I didn’t really need to order the Pad Thai, so we had a lot of leftovers.

Mae Ploy - Garlic Pepper Tofu | A Vegan in Progress

Garlic Pepper Tofu – get it!

I also had their Vegetable Spring Rolls, which were crispy and good, but just yer average spring roll.

There are a lot of vegan places to patronize in this part of LA, but if you’re looking for a good place for vegans and carnists alike, check out Mae Ploy!