Sure we may have been a week late, but our moms were happy to be together with us and seemed pretty excited to try out the dinner options at Sprig & Vine, the all vegan 51 seat restaurant in New Hope, PA. It has a bit of an upscale vibe while still capturing a relaxed casual atmosphere, perfect for whatever dining mood you happen to be into for your visit.
This is only my second visit here. My first was a pre blog visit last spring for brunch. The brunch here is excellent and well worth a trip back and its own blog post, so look for that in the near future!
We were seated right away and our server Jackie checked in and took our drink order. She was friendly, responsive and knowledgeable about the menu. That is always a huge relief when we take our parents someplace where we don’t know the menu well. We often let our parents know what we think they would like from a menu, but in this case we weren’t sure of spice levels, which is always a concern with both of our moms!
With Jackie’s help we all navigated the menu with relative ease and decided on 5 small plates for the table to share and we each got a large plate for our own meal. So let’s take a look at the lineup. Marinated Castelvetrano Olives: Chinese five spice, orange, chile and aged black garlic. These olives were great, nice and salty but the addition of the five spice and black garlic lends a sweetness to them that makes for a great balance. Pickled Local Vegetables: wild ramp, asparagus, sunchoke, carrot and green radish. I am a big fan of pickled veg and these were on point – acidic and crisp! Edamame Falafel: pickled radish and lemon kosho tahini. This was my favorite small plate, they were fried hard and crispy with a pillowly soft interior that was perfectly seasoned. I could have easily eaten three orders of these and called in a night (but glad I didn’t – lots more good food!) Chickpea sweet potato griddle cakes: chile-lime pickle aioli, kohlrabi radish pear salsa. Sweet and crispy this was a solid dish with the aioli going very well with the sweetness of the potato. Za’Atar Grilled Oyster Mushrooms: Seared potato pave, cashew, saffron garlic aioli. This is probably my second favorite small plate, mushrooms were grilled perfectly and Za’Atar spice has rocketed to the top of my list these days. I don’t use it often enough and it is just ideal for grilled vegetables. The seared potato was excellent and when eaten as one bit with the aioli it was perfect!
Now onto the main event. My mom and dad both ordered the Risotto Verde: Broccoli, leek, fennel and jalapeno, grilled ramp, seared radish, sorrel, snow pea, pea tendril & lime, with ramp oil. They were nice enough to let me taste test and this was really good. Not too spicy at all despite the jalapeno, and it was rich and creamy. Both my parents gave a hearty endorsement to the dish! My mother in law ordered the Beet-Carrot Ravioli: Beet semolina pasta with a cashew – carrot filling. English pea, japanese knotweed, fiddlehead fern, asparagus & greens with a saffron carrot cream sauce topped with roasted pistachio. I tasted a piece of the rav dish and it all worked well together-rich and creamy, and my mother in law really loved this dish. She also ordered a side of the Fried Fingerling Potato with a urfa biber chile aioli. Karen ordered the Exotic Mushroom Paella: Shitake, beech, cremini, enoki & oyster mushroom with a saffron bomba rice, green olive, red pepper, arugula, grilled lemon and ancho chile black garlic aioli. Karen shared some with me, and I really liked this dish as well. Rice was perfectly cooked and the flavors were bold and this dish did paella justice.
I ordered the Cornmeal Crusted Tempeh: Served with a miso-maple mustard sauce, braised red cabbage, three potato mash, chipotle roasted pecan and a horseradish cashew cream. A thick piece of tempeh crusted and fried to perfection with a soft interior – man was I happy I ordered this! This dish was just fun to eat. I have been on a miso kick, so the miso mustard played right into my wheelhouse and when eaten with the perfectly pickled cabbage and kicked up horseradish cream it was an exceptionally balanced bite! The mixed mash was great accompaniment with its with its combination of potato goodness! I want to try some other dishes for my next visit, but this would be tough to pass over.
Cornmeal Crusted Tempeh
Before moving onto the dessert course, I should mention what I thought was the only speed bump of the night. Our main course took, what we thought, was a long time to come after the small plates. Probably waited over a half hour from when the small plates were served until we all received our main dishes. We got there as the restaurant opened and it wasn’t full, so perhaps the paella or the risotto takes longer to plate. If that is the case, its fine, but a word from the server would have been appreciated.
We looked over the dessert menu and while we were all pretty full, we decided to check out a couple of the desserts. What is better than sharing desserts, right? We ordered the Almond-Black Cocoa Torte, PB & J French Toast and Meyer Lemon Cheesecake. The torte was decadent, very rich with all the chocolate flavor! My dad who is a chocoholic was very impressed! The cheesecake was rich and creamy and would satisfy any cheesecake craving. The French Toast was what I ordered, being a total sucker for anything peanut butter. It did not disappoint. It was an awesome bite when taking a little of all the components at once. Great balance of sweet and acid with the ‘jelly’ being a red wine-vanilla bean caramel. Complex and very satisfying dessert!
Karen and I, along with our omnivore parents, all loved the food. A unanimous ‘excellent’ I would say. The flavors were deep but presented in a straightforward way making Sprig and Vine a great choice to bring a non vegan friend that always wonders ‘What do you eat?’ Spring and Summer weather is perfect for spending the day wondering the shops and galleries in New Hope and grabbing a fantastic meal here, so as the weather warms up you should add this to your list of go to places!