Araya’s Vegetarian Place-a restaurant review

One of my new favorite places!

Last Saturday Irving, David and I went to Araya’s Vegetarian Place for lunch.  Araya’s is an all vegan Thai restaurant.  They have two locations, and we went to the Seattle location about 2 years ago.  But with the new toll on the bridge, and a toddler in tow, we don’t get across the water as often as we would like.  So I was thrilled when I saw that they had opened a new location in Bellevue.  And I was even more thrilled when I saw this sign in front of the restaurant:

Everything is vegan! And its a buffet…you don’t have to make any tough choices!!! And its $8.99!  And they serve the buffet every day of the week!

Can you believe it?  An entire vegan buffet…I was in heaven!  While I can almost always find something to eat on any menu (a question I am asked often), its usually just that…one item.  So an entire buffet?  And very family friendly—they let David eat for free, and there were other kids in the restaurant so we weren’t worried about noise.  We’ll be back again soon!

Here’s a quick peek at what we ate:

I know…and it was only my first trip through the buffet.

I started with the salad bar.  In addition to a pretty traditional spinach salad, they had a delicious cucumber salad.  Crunchy cucumber was marinated in a lightly sweet vinaigrette with carrots and red onion.  They also had kimchee (Irving enjoyed it!), a mixed green salad, and fresh fruit slices.

Eating peanut sauce right off his fork! And his new favorite is “noodles”—pad thai.

Then I helped myself to a heap of spring rolls and a huge puddle of amazing peanut sauce!  David liked it so much he ate the peanut sauce on its own.  David also enjoyed oranges dipped in peanut sauce…he basically ate the peanut sauce at every opportunity.

Yum! I’m hungry just looking at these pictures!

We also enjoyed pad thai (vegan-no fish sauce!), fresh steamed vegetables with fresh tofu, pineapple fried rice, and stir fried vegetables and tofu with cashews.  Irving enjoyed some curry soup as well!

Oddly enough, one of the highlights for me was the huge rice cooker full of brown rice.  I know that’s a strange thing to be excited about, but it was delicious—nutty and soft, and a perfect complement to the rest of my meal.

I know…not a great picture, sorry. But it was delicious! A very unique flavor your not likely to come across often.

The last item I enjoyed was black sticky rice with coconut milk.  I know the picture is not very appetizing…sorry about that…but the taste was great.  Not too sweet, but with the creamy coconut sauce on top it made a perfect end to a delicious meal.

Look at that huge spread!

They also have a huge dinner menu that I plan on checking out sometime.  Its on our list for an encore…looking forward to our next trip there!

In downtown Bellevue, on Bellevue Way and 2nd.

Araya's Vegetarian Place on Urbanspoon



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