Mi Lah Vegetarian Restaurant in Philadelphia was an accidental find. We were walking down 16th Street, on our way to Monk’s for a Belgian brew, when we stumbled upon a restaurant with a large sign that read “Vegetarian”. I, of course, had to cross the street to get a peek at the menu and, after a quick glance, I immediately knew I had to go in. (Our beers could wait.)
The restaurant closes at 10:00 and the time was about 9:40. We walked in and it was nearly empty – save a large table upstairs filled with a giddy reunion of about 8 people. The service was friendly, funny and down to earth. We apologized for coming so close to closing and they did not seem bothered at all, in fact, they were very relaxed about it.
There was a wide variety of dishes on the menu that will satisfy anyone’s particular tastes. After we ordered, we were brought a small plate of soft bread and a delicious basil spread that was a great way to start our meal.
My Cambodian Amok arrived at the table piping hot. The sauce was creamy and spicy, warming my stomach after a long day of travel. There was a LOT of tofu in this dish which also consisted of spinach, eggplant, and tofu in coconut lemongrass sauce. It was a shame I couldn’t bring the leftovers home with me but we were sans fridge in our hotel room.
We also ordered the zucchini stuffed with seitan and red peppers. The is a definitely dish I wish I could replicate at home. It had a rustic, woodsy and, dare I say, “meaty” taste to it. Again, the portion size for this dish was quite large – but not a bit was left on the plate.
Mi Lah was a great accidental find. We left full and happy and ready to imbibe some Belgian beers.
Just a heads-up, this is a BYOB place. As an out-of-towner, this can be a bit discouraging if you were hoping to pair your meal with a nice wine.
Mi Lah Restaurant
218 South 16th Street