Saturday, September 26, 2009

Food at Mt Tambourine

What can a vegan eat at the mountain holiday resort town of Mt Tamborine? As you saw from my previous post, the food at our B&B was plentiful, fresh and delicious.

However, the vegan options for the rest of the town were varied.

(Please forgive the poor quality mobile phone photos, but our camera died.)

On our first night, we ate picked up takeaway pizza at Tamborine Mountain Pizza. They make small, medium and large pizzas. We had a small pizza each. I had a vegetarian pizza with no cheese. The chef confirmed that the base was vegan. They also offered to use a clean cutter for my pizza, without being asked. The base was splendid, crisp, light and chewy all at once. The toppings were plentiful and fresh. The sauce was a tangy tomato sauce. I would have liked a bit more sauce, but it was a very good pizza. Mr BrisVegan had a similar opinion of his non-vegan option.

On Tuesday, we cruised gallery row, which is the main craft sales area of Mt Tambourine. I found a lovely little spice store, Gourmet Spice Blends, where I got some Szechwan pepper, sea salt, dukkah and other items. We visited a few winery outlets. We also went to the MT brewery, which had a tasting platter for $10, which gives 4 small beers.

I had the Mountain Bitter (a Yorkshire style with caramel overtones), the moderation pale ale (US style with fresh citrus and tropical fruit scents), the 0909 Cuvee Blonde (Belgian style with raisin and hops notes) and the Katya Imperial Stout (black stout with chocolate flavours in a full bodied yeasty stout). I loved the Mountain Bitter and Moderation Pale Ale. The others were also very good. There are many other options to try.

On Tuesday night, we went to the local Thai restaurant, Eagle Thai. They were happy to give us a list of menu items that did not contain fish sauce. They had quite a few vegan and vegetarian options. We had the deep fried tofu, followed by a Thai tofu salad with peanut sauce and a green curry, with steamed jasmine rice.

The deep fried tofu was firm tofu, deep fried and served with a nice sweet chilli sauce. The tofu was firm, rather than soft, which I have had deep fried in the past. It was nice for a tofu lover like me, but not the best tofu for the dish.

The curry showed some heat and the fresh spiciness of a green curry. However, it was not particularly full flavoured and did not show the full coconut creaminess that you would expect from this type of curry. It also had a lot of wombok, which was an odd vegetable for a Thai curry. The salad had very little tofu and a lot of iceberg lettuce. The peanut sauce was sweet, nutty and good.

I really wanted to like all of this. I love Thai food and the staff were very obliging. However, after dinner, Mr Brisvegan said "Would you recommend the restaurant to your friends?" We both had to answer "No." We have both had better Thai food at a lot of other places. However, the staff seem to understand the concept of vegan food and have a lot of vegan options, so you know that, as a vegan, you will have a lot of choices.

There are a lot of other restaurants at Mt Tamborine, many of which had vegetarian and maybe even vegan options. I would like to explore further in the future.