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Dining out meat-free.

The Vegetarian Option: SkyIce Sweet & Savory

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[Photographs: Howard Walfish]

Thai restaurant and ice cream parlor SkyIce opened last year in Park Slope, to some adulation about their unusual ice creams in flavors like Thai tea, black sesame seaweed and mixed vegetable ice cream. With all the attention on its sweets, the restaurant's savory menu tends to get overlooked. Sure, ice cream and sorbet may be the star of the show here, but SkyIce has some really good vegetarian food. And if you go for lunch, you get a small scoop of any flavor you like for free. What more could you need?

The Steamed Mushroom Dumplings ($4.95) promise a mix of five kinds of mushrooms. Normally that might mean a mess of indistinguishable flavors, but here the thin dumpling skins gave way to a very flavorful interior. Not that I could identify five different mushrooms, but the dumpling was packed with great mushroom intensity, accentuated by the sharp, salty soy dipping sauce.

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I was eager to try the No-Carb Pad Thai ($8.95) with tofu and vegetables. Can something without noodles really be a pad thai? In this dish they're made of papaya strips, which retain their crunch despite being cooked, not unlike stir fried bamboo. Tofu in two varieties: fresh and smoked. Just make sure to ask for a version without fish sauce.

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Savory Crepes ($7.50) are filled with broccoli, carrots, eggplant, and green beans. The fresh vegetables were encased in a slightly sweet crepe, which made a nice contrast to the savory insides. Let them know that you like spicy food and you'll receive a small dish of green curry to dip into, but it does contain shrimp paste, The salad on the side is nothing special, though the ginger-peanut salad dressing is quite refreshing.

Park Slope has quite a few unremarkable Thai restaurants, but SkyIce features some unusual treats that make it worth the visit. Nothing outshines the ice cream, but we're happy to know that you can nourish both cravings here.

SkyIce Sweet & Savory

63 5th Avenue, Brooklyn NY 11217 (map)
718-230-0910
skyicenyc.com

About the author: Howard Walfish is a Virginia native who has been living in New York since 2003. He is, in fact, a vegetarian, and is the co-founder of Eat to Blog and the creator of BrooklynVegetarian.

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