Loke Woh Yuen Vegetarian Restaurant
We picked this place (20 Tanjong Pagar Road, 6221-2912) somewhat randomly, but we figured that we'd give it a shot tonight, partly in hopes that there might be some surprises to be found that could shatter any pre-conceived notions against vegetarian food. We didn't quite know what to order, so they gave us some recommendations and we went from there.
And what a surprise it was indeed. First out of the gate was a cereal topped plate of deep fried abalone mushrooms...kinda like cereal prawns but with the great benefit of not needing to shell those bad boys. These turned out so light and tasty (and the cereal was ground a bit more finely without being overly sweet either) that it was truly enjoyable. If everything else here turned out as impressive as this, then we were in for a great meal.
Unfortunately, the rest went downhill pretty quickly. Some tofu skin dumpling thing was crispy, but the bed of veggies underneath was rather bland. Similarly, I found myself continuing to dump pepper and soy sauce onto their noodles in an (unsuccessful) effort to give it more taste. Finally, they brought us some special soup that wasn't even on the menu, but it was filled with so many Chinese herbs that just didn't quite agree with me.
So as much as I liked those mushrooms, I doubt that I'll be coming back, mostly because of how bland most of the food was. In some ways, I suppose that this wasn't unexpected of a vegetarian place, but Raj goes to show how much more tasty vegetarianism really can be.