Today marks the first day of VeganMoFo – vegan month of food! I want to use this month to get back into the blogging groove. I regularly get a lot of questions about eating vegan in Berlin on instagram and every time I answer I wish I could just redirect folks to my blog. But of course I can’t do that when it’s so dead… Happy Cow just recently claimed that Berlin is the best place for vegans (although I’m not sure how reliable that text is, since they claimed Berlin’s famous for Bratwurst and Beer gardens which… no… really no, that is Bavaria!), so I want to offer some help in the confusing world of vegan eating around here. Let me just dive in and tell you about a place called “Banh Xeo Saigon” (Greifswalderstr. 41) in the Prenzlauer Berg.
Banh Xeo Saigon is an omni vietnamese restaurant, that doesn’t look very impressive from the outside. It’s not very flashy and more of a “all the sauces and napkins on the table” kind of place. I’ve read claims that it’s a pretty “authentic” place as far as Vietnamese cuisine goes and the Vietnamese customers seem to indicate that it’s true.
The menu offers two pages full of vegan options. Since I’m a big fan of crispy vegan duck both times I’ve been there I’ve tried a different version of “Cá Chay hoac Vịt Chay” (6,90 euros). The one with peanut sauce, number 71, is pretty good. I wouldn’t recommend number 72, the sauce reminded me of the peas-in-tomato sauce that normally accompanies canned ravioli. The roasted vegan duck is tasty in both cases of course.
Of course you can also get Bánh xèo here – fried pancakes made from the rice flour. The vegan version is tasty and fresh, but the light taste means it’s best suited as a starter or if you’re not too hungry.
There is only one vegan shake (pineapple juice with mint) because all the creamy ones are made with cow’s milk. The iced tea is alright but reminds me a bit of fizzy tablets. There are better places for vegan vietnamese drinks.
There is no vegetarian Papaya Salad on the menu, but you can order it with tofu. It’s tasty and hot, but nine euros is a steep price.
All in all I’d recommend Banh Xeo Saigon if you feel like eating vegan duck (just avoid number 72) or tasty, cheap Bánh xèo and don’t mind eating in a non-veg place. I’ll definitely be back to try the Vegan Hot Pot.
Banh Xeo Saigon
Greifswalder Straße 41, 10405 Berlin
Phone: 030 74392987
Monday-Sunday 12:00 – 23:30