Friday, April 25, 2014
Vegan in Flagstaff - Red Curry Vegan Kitchen
It's our first day out, traveling from Taos, NM to Portland, OR. When Rick and I do road trips, we bring a lot of food for snacks and meals. More on that in another post. But when we roll into whatever town we're calling Home for the night, we like to see what's happening in the local vegan restaurant scene. Tonight in Flagstaff, AZ, we got really lucky. We've been here many times before, and always enjoy the energy of the town itself. College towns tend to be more awake and alive than some places, and Flagstaff really has it going on with Northern Arizona University at the center, plus excellent skiing, hiking, and all things outdoorsy, and it's proximity to the Grand Canyon.
Flagstaff was already a terrific small town in my book, but it just jumped a couple of levels tonight after a meal at the recently opened Red Curry Vegan Kitchen. This cheerful little place was jumping, and so were the two servers, who kept up cheerfully with the steady flow of customers streaming in. And the food was some of the best Thai-style vegan I've ever had. Maybe the best. I'm pretty sure it was, with flavors rich and concentrated, spices just right, and perfectly cooked vegetables that beamed happiness from the plates.
We ordered too much, but polished it off after a long day on the road. We started with the Sampler Plate from the appetizer section, which was veggie rolls, samosa wontons, kale chips, and crispy tofu for two.
Then we had the Massamun Curry and the Pad Se Lew. We planned on sharing, so didn't care which plate went where. After a few bites though, we each claimed our favorites and swapped dishes. I took the curry, which was so luxuriously coconut-creamy I kind of wanted to bathe in it. Rick was glad to have the noodles mostly to himself, and we traded bites now and then for variety. The conversations was mostly "Yums" and Mmmmmms."
We figured we "deserved" dessert, so ordered the Raw Chocolate Bites and a Dark Chocolate Almond Buttercup, which we devoured and savored at the same time. I think that's possible.
There is no liquor on the menu, but it's perfectly ok to BYOB, which we learned when we asked the folks at the table next to us about their bottle of wine. What a perfect world! Bring what you like to drink, don't overpay, and no corkage fee. We were happy with water (served in a large carafe with no ice, which is my preference) and hot green-ginger tea. And the grand total for this feast? A dinky $35 plus tip!
If we were considering a move to Flagstaff, Red Curry Vegan Kitchen could certainly help sway us in the Yes direction. But since we're still intent on making it all the way to the west coast, I'll hope this wonderful place thrives so we can come back on our next trip through the area, which might now be sooner than later.