John's of 12th Street

There’s pretty much no other restaurant in NYC like John’s Of 12th Street. This a classic Italian American spot in the East Village with huge portions, framed historical photos on the wall, and candles that have been burning mountains of wax for probably a hundred years straight (it opened in the early 1900s). But what’s different about this place is that there’s an entire menu dedicated to vegan options. So you can get your eggplant parm with vegan cheese and your in-laws can eat meatballs. If you’re a vegetarian but would rather avoid vegan cheese, we really like the lemon-y grilled portobello mushrooms with polenta and greens.

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