Madame K’s Vegetarian
A new herbivore heaven hits Fitzroy, Thai style
Certain veggie restaurants in Brunswick Street ought to watch their backs; Madame K’s Vegetarian is a worthy opponent. Named after the owner’s wife, this new vegetarian haunt opened at the end of February and has the power to make carnivores think twice about what constitutes a good feed.
The menu has a notable range of gluten free and vegan-friendly meals. About half of the dishes are faux meat, but not the tasteless, rubbery kind that so many vegetarians detest. It could fool even the most avid meat eaters. The juicy Massaman lamb curry is a perfect example: tender ‘lamb’ is made from slow-cooked mushrooms and served with a scoop of mashed sweet potato and a generous sprinkling of crunchy cashew nuts.
Everything is affordable, but not to the detriment of flavour. While Madame K’s is heavily Thai influence—a nod to the owner’s home—there are hints of Chinese, Indian and Japanese along the way. Snack on Tom Yum soup or soy ‘duck’ pancakes before moving onto a green tempeh curry, Pad Thai or a hearty laksa. Save room for the exciting desserts, such as pumpkin balls and taro pudding in coconut milk with soy ice cream. There’s also a modest Australian-New Zealand wine list and a selection of imported beer to complement the food. The coconut drink is the perfect non-alcoholic refresher after a hit of spice.
Blues, greens and dark wood dominate the neat space, where diners can prop themselves up with comfortable patterned cushions along the length of the banquette seat. Framed prints of vintage cigarette advertisements decorate the walls alongside delicate china, but the modern mingles with the traditional the most in the feature lights, constructed from traditional basket fishing traps.
Madame K’s Vegetarian has plans to expand if the price is right. We can only pray to the vegetarian gods that they venture south of the river soon.
Where: 367 Brunswick Street, Fitzroy
When: Seven days 12pm-10pm (closed between 4pm-5pm)
Phone: (03) 94156099