If veganism had a capital, it would be George Town. George Town has numerous vegan restaurants suitable for all tastes as well as budgets.
I will not list all of the restaurants because there are way too many. Every time I got lost in the city, I found a new vegan place to eat. Some are very small and only sell soups, right in the heart of the old town. I did not spend a long time in the modern part of the city though there is a beautiful walk along the beach and you can easily rent a bicycle and tour around.
In my view, the most peculiar and characteristic part of town is the old city where Chinese, Malay and Indian cultures have been living together for centuries. Here you can find some really outstanding Buddhist and Taoist temples as well as beautiful mosques, often one next to the other. Most vegan restaurants are in this side of the city.
The photo at the beginning of the article is something I made myself while in George Town. I bought fresh coconut milk from the market (they make it fresh every day except the weekend), peeled a papaya and mixed them together. If you need vitamin B, this is a real bomb and incredibly delicious!
Chinese vegetarian restaurants are actually vegan, apart from some packaged stuff which may contain honey, you are 100% safe. On the other hand, Indian vegetarian restaurants often use dairy products in their food and may not be totally safe for a vegan to eat there. Unless, of course, you know exactly what’s in your meal.
EE Beng Vegetarian Buffet
18 Lebuh Dickens, George Town
This restaurant has a very big selection of different noodles, noodle soups, vegetables, tofu mock meat and fish. The food is fresh and delicious and it’s great for those suffering from allergies or other ailments because some dishes are very plain and lightly cooked (e.g. broccoli). You can choose between white or brown rice. It’s better to eat there before 2 pm because after a certain hour they stop cooking and only sell what’s left. Noodle soups are only available until 1 pm.
Luk Yea Yan
33 Lorong Madras
This restaurant is located at a 10 minute walk from EE Beng. I normally went there in the afternoon or evening. They have a good buffet in the morning until about 1 pm, after that you can order from a menu a la carte (translated in English). All dishes are good but their best dish is the famous Laksa ! They also have numerous items to take away.
39/A Cantonment Road
This restaurant has got a huge buffet with all my favourite food. They are very health conscious so the take away box is made of recycled cardboard. They have fresh seaweed (yummy), a big selection of different green vegetables, wonderful stuffed noodles, prawns, and other delicacies. My favourite was their potato croquette. You have to eat here at least once if you are in George Town. As they don’t have a lot of food in the late afternoon, I often took away the food (see photos).
This restaurant is very near The Reclining Buddha. Though you have to ask for it because when I went there the women who were running the business only spoke Chinese and had no business card. Their food is very delicious. The buffet is pretty big and well balanced with different types of noodles, tofu, veggies, mock meat and fish. My favourite was their special stuffed eggplant and stuffed bitter gourd which reminded me of the Italian melanzane ripiene. They have a type of fried fish cutlet which seems sword fish, really delicious. They also make their own (eggless) mayonnaise which I truly enjoyed but of course not the healthiest choice. Great for a treat. This is another must try restaurant.