Here is the thing about Thai food: it is everywhere in Seattle. I would venture to say it is our most popular Asian food choice in town; even when there are five places on the same block, they are usually packed with hungry diners. I think there are 11 on Capitol Hill alone.
Here is the other thing about Thai food: it is fishy. Lots of fish sauce and oyster sauce in almost every dish. Some places say the two are inseparable and vegan Thai food isn’t worth it.* (I’m lookin at you Tom Yum Koong in West Seattle).
Thankfully, the folks over at Araya’s (all vegan in the U-District) and Jhanjay Thai (2 locations in Wallingford and Ballard) know differently and have been serving fish-free Thai food for years. And now, a little closer to my abode we have a new veggie Thai food player in the hood:
Wedgwood II. I understand the the original Thai of Wedgwood (located in Wedgwood, wow!) isn’t vegetarian, so I am pleased as punch that their second location went the kinder direction.*
And yay for them! I will now be calling them Yumwood. No wait, make that Wedgeyum! Wait. Sir Yumsalot? Hm. Not everything ‘Wedgeyum’ is vegan – they have a cream cheese filled appetizer and a few other items – but no worries about chicken bits and fish sauce getting into your food, which makes me very happy.
We tried three dishes: the Onion Cake (asked and confirmed vegan, pic top left), a traditional Pad Thai (above left) and a dish we picked for the name: Pad Ka-Plow (pic above right). And the fun part? When we asked for hot sauce, we got a selection of 4, including a non-fishy prik naam plaa, in a space-age contraption with cute little lids and spoons (pic above center).
The service and atmosphere were really lovely. The space, especially the hidden back area, is super adorbs (see pic top right) and perfect for birthday dinner groups. (eh hem, March).
Wedgwood II Vegetarian Thai
420 Broadway E
(between Harrison St & Republican St)
Seattle, WA 98102
*Wondering why a little fish sauce matters? Because a little fish sauce adds up to a lot of fish. Almost 90% of the worlds large fish are already depleted from the oceans and we continue to rake that underworld daily with sonar and large nets to meet world demands. Longline and net fishing destroy the ocean fish, reptiles, and mammals that we aren’t eating. And fish aren’t always the health food people might hope because they concentrate toxins like mercury that are released into the worlds water sources. But the most important reason is that we don’t have to! Fish, just like cows, and sheep, and dogs, and people, feel pain and experience suffering. We don’t have to eat fish sauce to be happy or healthy.