Silver Lake: Going Vegetarian and Vegan at Pine and Crane
I’ve been meaning to check out Pine and Crane in Silver Lake for a while now. Everyone I know loves this spot. But since I frequent the San Gabriel Valley a lot, I tend not to seek Chinese food in other parts of town. Although, I have been known to hop around trying as many dumplings as I can. Pine and Crane is Taiwanese food like Little Fatty in Mar Vista or Lao Tao in Chinatown. I do think Pine and Crane is more traditional despite offering beer and being in a trendy neighborhood.
My friend I checked it out with is vegan but did try the vegetarian daikon and egg dumplings. These were delicious. I wondered how I’d like the meaty ones so I’ll be back for the spicy shrimp wontons, kurobuta pork dumplings and pan fried pork buns. I don’t mind eating vegan or vegetarian once in a while but it’s definitely not a lifestyle for me.
We also had the spicy peanuts. I have had these at food fests before and they’re always a good starter. And the only source of protein in our meal besides the aforementioned eggs.
I approved of Pine and Crane’s cold case which held a number of salads. I opted for the seaweed, woodear mushrooms and five-spice bamboo shoots. You have to like crunchy textures like I do to get into these.
We also got the three cup mushroom rice which came with lots of good pieces of ginger. I wanted to try the mabo tofu (the one with kurobuta pork but they do have a vegan option) but we wanted to get noodles as well so I’ll get the mabo next time.
The dan dan noodles had a nice sesame peanut sauce with just the slightest hint of mala spice. I eyed a neighboring table’s beef noodle soup and promised myself I’ll do Pine and Crane, meaty style next time.
But what did I think of it as a place for vegetarians or vegans? It’s great! There were plenty of options and I can see why it’s so popular in the neighborhood. There really isn’t anything else like it until you head into the SGV.(323) 668-1128 © The Minty 2017