Just okay. Don't drive too far for this spot.
Just okay. Don't drive too far for this spot.
Tasty food, a lot options!
Grasshopper has consistently good food and decent service. Sure, the restaurant doesn't sparkle (people mistake wear and tear of a small family run restaurant for dirt sometimes, but I've never seen something that made me question the actual cleanliness here) and the to-go containers are, well, pretty bad, but the food is consistently very good, affordable, and available, with a large selection of 100% vegan items.
Better, they are long time supporters of the Boston Vegetarian Society and let the group meet there every month for free.
Everything we tried here has its own unique flavor and was very good.
The Hot & Sour had great content including veggie Pork and Tofu. It was delicious, living up to its "hot" & "Sour" names.
My Favorite dish was "the Kale & Gluten Supreme". Just excellent and I would recommend it to everyone. It was filled with three different types of faux meat as well as huge portions of perfectly cooked kale in a savory black bean sauce. The mains also come with rice.
We've also tried the "Kale and Mushroom Supreme", which had a really well executed ginger sauce, but for some reason doesn't have shitakes. The "Sesame Beef", was filled with sweet and delicious vege beef medallions and well cooked broccoli. The "Lo Mein with Tofu" is done well and isn't oily. I think the only thing I've had there which was disappointing was the "Spicy curry Vermicelli", as the noodles weren't Al Dente, the curry wasn't particularly spicy, and the Sweet potatoes seemed an odd fit for the rest of the dish.
All in all, this place is a real winner. I've never had anything bad here. The portions are huge. The service is polite and lightyears above Boston's "My Thai Vegan". The last time I went to Grasshopper was the last great snowstorm of 2015 and they were the only store on the block open. This place is open even in blizzards and the food is consistently excellent.
In terms of flavors or textures, nothing blew my mind at Grasshopper. It also isn't fancy and unfortunately it's out of the way from Central Boston. That being said if you've got a hankering for a delicious Asian Meal and you're in Beantown, than Grasshopper's your ticket, and its worth the extra 20-30 minutes of transportation, because it is easily the best Asian fare in town.
Amazing blueberry vegan cheesecake.
We have been coming here for over 5 years. There's are definitely hit and miss items but the hits are worth returning for.
Hot and sour soup is the best one I've ever had. I tend to compare any other restaurant's one to this one. The No Name is the most popular dish among my friends. I don't tend to eat fried stuff but I've tried it a couple times off their plate and it's always been good. Most of the appetizers are good but don't get the pizza. The mock meats are good but the tofu dishes use a soft tofu and are never quite satisfying, especially not the coconut tofu.
All entrees are giant and they have a buffet one Sunday every month that's worth a trip at least once.
Bad enough our No Name came out overcooked, rock hard, waaaay to sugared up, and completely inedible in every way, but the folks at Grasshopper refused to take it off our bill. Despite the fact that we returned it virtually untouched, the manager/owner (not sure what his position was. He didn't identify himself) flat out refused to take it off our check stating "It's not a store, you can't return it. If we give you your money back it's not fair to us"
At first I thought he was kidding. Who says that?
Then the guy got insulting and explained to us how the No Name is a very special crispy dish. Yeah, crispy as a brick. Totally rude, especially since I already told him I had been a customer for well over a decade and never had a No Name come out rock hard or completely crystalized in sugar like that. The guy went on to rant about how it's not fair to return food to the kitchen. Seriously on and on. Then he wanted me to order something else. Finally, he "generously" took half off the horrible mess. Then he continued his rant about how unfair it is if customers return bad food after ordering it. I swear, at this point I was ready to pay him just to stop talking. He. Just. Kept. Going. On. And. On. And. On.
Basically, the folks at Grasshopper would rather get a few bucks from me for a completely inedible meal then continue to make money off me for the next several years. That's sad. Yep. Bad move, but what do they care -- like so many college town businesses, they are largely sustained by transient folks, a new batch come to town every year.
It's all good for me. Grasshopper is kind of far from me, and other places have outrun Grasshopper in that mock meat junk food kind of way. There are so many great places in the area, I prefer to patronize businesses that respect their customers. And I might just loose that ten pounds after all, now that I won't be picking up lunch specials on a weekly basis and traipsing over to Alston for dinner anymore!
I don't think there's a vegan out there who doesn't appreciate an all vegan restaurant. Having said that, I also think vegans appreciate (perhaps even more than non-vegetarians) presentation and other details.
Let's start with the good, or even great. The appetizers—at least the ones we tried, the House Special Assorted Appetizers—were excellent. If you aren't a fan of fried food, you won't like these, but if you are, you'll be in heaven.
The next dish we tried was entitled "The No Name," basically fried strips of gluten in a a run-of-the-mill sweet and sour sauce. There were not very many veggies (perhaps four pieces of broccoli), but to it's credit, the dish was quite tasty, as long as you like this type of sauce.
Next we tried the The Grasshopper Supreme. I won't mince words here: this was pretty awful. It was bland, difficult to eat (all of the steamed veggies were not bite-size and in huge chunks) and presented in a hodgepodge, un-appetizing platter. In a word, it was sloppy.
Finally, we tried the Sizzling Platter. This was OK, but again, not that tasty, and frankly, pretty bland.
I'm going to go out on a limb: I think some people who really like the restaurant and give it five stars haven't tried truly exquisite vegan asian cuisine. If you've never had vegan asian food before, this will blow you away. If you've been vegan for over twenty years like I have, this is only so-so.
On a positive note, it's not dirty as some people say, just more like a typical asian restaurant. There service is also good, but I made the mistake of asking the waitress her opinion (she may have even been the owner) and I should have trusted my instinct and ordered for the table instead.
I actually hope the restaurant reads these reviews, and works a little harder on presentation and taste. It would take much to really improve the dishes and make this a knock-out restaurant.
Anyway, perhaps we just ordered a couple dishes that weren't that impressive (or as impressive as they seem on the menu and via their titles), but suffice it to say, we won't return when we're back in the Boston area.
Updated from previous review on Friday November 28, 2014
I was really impressed by the wide diversity of all vegan food and truly delicious combinations. The "bird's" nest made with julienned taro root filled with squid- and shrimp-like pressed root veggies and beef-like seitan in a delicious non-oyster sauce was really phenomenal. The hot and sour soup and chicken-ish with veggie dumplings were remarkable, too, as was the ubiquitous hot tea. The atmosphere and service are appropriate for an affordable, quick-service American-Chinese restaurant. Come for the food, but don't expect fine dining here. The vast, delicious menu are what makes this place attractive.
If I could give more than 5 stars for this incredible restaurant I would!!What more can you ask for, a totally vegan restaurant with an enormous choice of appetizers and entrees etc. A very friendly staff who is very helpful and the service from the kitchen is super-fast!! Not to mention that I have NEVER had a meal that didn't taste incredible!!! The only somewhat down-side is the lack of sufficient parking, but it is so worth the couple of minutes inconvenience. Needless to say, this is my whole family's favorite restaurant BY FAR and recommend it highly !!!!!
Don't try to eat all of it; plan to bring some back with you. Their menu is huge, and all of it is vegan, and all of it is delicious. Highly highly recommend.
Very friendly staff, extremely authentic Asian food, great selection. Will definitely go back!!!!!!
5 stars for food
5 stars for variety and taste of food
3 stars for customer service, as they are seemingly pushy for you to leave once you've finished your food
A great place to share large dishes of food. Definitely choose contrasting flavors to balance your flavor dimensions. Too much of one dish could get intense!
I had the no name, which is excellent, but you have to share it because it is huge and you can quickly get sick of the intense flavors. I recommend ordering it along with other dishes with a group of people.
Updated from previous review on Tuesday December 24, 2013
I really enjoyed the food at the Grasshopper. I have gone twice and both times I was impressed by the food that they had their. Also, I was happy to see animal rights literature at the front of the restaurant. However, one thing that was off putting was the fish that were kept in an aquarium....a small, gross one at that.
The food is good but cleanliness is real issue.
I had an all around pleasant experience while I was at Grasshopper. I wasn't disappointed with the food and some of it was actually pretty addicting. It sort of makes me wish I lived closer by- but, at the same time, I'm glad that I don't because the food isn't exactly "healthy" and I cave to temptations daily- so the grasshopper and I are not a good combo. But yeah, delicious.
The food was quite good, but it was too much, we couldn't eat everything. The dining area has a dirty aquarium with poor fish inside. That's not vegan to me. The waitress was very friendly and kind. If you eat there you get tea and water for free, that was very nice. And it's inexpensive.
The first thing that strikes you about Grasshopper when you sit down is the stains on the tablecloths. Not a good first impression. The menu is large and very hard to narrow down. I've got the no-name twice. Its not AT ALL healthy, but is tasty. The portions are large. I went once to try it out, the second time because I had a Groupon, but I don't think I'll go again. If they can't keep the dining area clean, I worry about the food.
Even though this was my first all-vegan restaurant and my favorite restaurant for years, I feel I can only give it 3 stars. They use lots of oil and MSG and peanuts, gluten and soy are in nearly everything, so you can't eat here with people who have allergies or food sensitivities and it's not so healthy. Also, they have live fish in a glass cage (aka an "aqua-prison") and the owners/workers are vegetarian, not vegan, and they use various imported mock-meats so it's unclear if everything is vetted as strictly vegan. That said, their food is tasty and their portions are huge - if you're on a budget and not worried about items above, this is a good option.
My boyfriend and I usually come to Grasshopper for their monthly (every third Sunday of the month) buffet. Usually the food is the same every time but that's okay because the dishes they choose are great, although sometimes a little inconsistent (the sauce on the no-name doesn't always taste the same). We do go there occasionally on non-buffet days and have never had a bad experience with that.
However, as much as I would like to give 5 stars, I am only giving 4 - this is because the one day a month they have the buffet, they host a Boston vegetarian society meeting and shut down the restaurant for a few hours. So, every time we want to go we have to call the restaurant and ask when they will actually be open - considering they don't shut down the same hours every time. There have been a couple times we showed up expecting to eat and they were either closed or made us do take out since they were closing it down soon. This is VERY annoying when the hours are inconsistent and you are closing down on probably the busiest day for the restaurant. They should really host it on a weekday when it is not as busy.
The mock meats were so amazing they fooled my meat eating friend. Also the dessert choices are so good it's easy to engage in internal battles with yourself about how much a person should really eat in one sitting. :)
I heard it was one of the best vegan places in Boston, but was rather disappointed. I was glad to have an all vegan menu, filled with different types of fake meats, but the fake meat is kind of slimy and has an unpleasant texture. I would have rather just had the broccoli. I found the sauce a little bland. But the dumplings were good. I would opt for just appetizers and not try the entrees with fake meats.
I had high expectations after hearing about this place. The first sign that something was wrong was when we arrived at lunchtime and found the place empty. When our food arrived it was mediocre and lacked creativity. Relying heavily on faux meat dishes will disappoint those looking for fresh healthly alternatives.
Grasshopper is good for meat eaters or part-time vegans. They sell Coke, Sprite, and other drinks that are not vegan.
The food is not healthy and you are guaranteed to feel lousy the next day.
The food is not organic.
That being said, I encourage people to go here as an alternative to a meat equivalent because it IS healthier.
My original goal was to go to Peace o' Pie prior to my flight back home. However, they do not open until after 5 on Mondays. I was greatly surprised to see Grasshopper right next door. The staff is great and they offer a wide variety of items. There is something there for everyone. However, the inside of the restaurant could stand a good cleaning and some renovation. I wouldn't recommend this spot for a date or even a friendly brunch. The food was okay-not the best, but still worth it. I had the (seitan) beef and broccoli lunch special and they let me substitute a spring roll for the soup.
Grasshopper is right next to the excellent peace o' pie vegan pizza place. When the latter was closed, we had to eat at Grasshopper instead.
Initially the menu looks inviting - almost too much choice for us choice-deprived vegans! But when the food arrived, the quality wasn't really convincing. It seems amazing how much you can mess up ingredients that thrown together should by rights be tasty.
In the end, the only good thing to say about the food were the portion sizes - those are enormous! You might well fill up on an "appetizer".
I couldn't even count how many times I've eaten here, I can't believe I've never reviewed it. We often come to the Sunday buffet when the Boston Veg Society has speakers. The buffet is always amazing and the absolute best deal around. And it's nice because if you are alone, you can meet a fellow veg at the group tables.
The food is just plain great. Yes, the famed No Name is fried gluten, no one said it was healthy, just amazing. The other dishes offer various protein options, and the veggies are always fresh and nice. I take personal umbrage at the reviewer who called it dirty. It is not fancy, by any means, but it is clean. It's a bit tricky from the T, so check your maps. But Go!
I've eaten here a few times, and the food has always been ok - not great, not terrible, but just ok. On one visit we got an appetizer sampler and a lot of the items tasted almost exactly the same. So while they have a ton of different menu items, there isn't much variety in taste.
The last time I ate here with my husband we sat by the window and noticed some roaches near our table. He smashed two and then we moved to a different table, which wasn't against the wall and didn't seem to have a roach problem. Not sure if we'll ever eat here again because this experience was a huge turn off.
Whenever we travel to the Boston area, we always eat at Grasshopper. It has an excellent menu, totally vegan, so many choices it feels as if one could eat there every day for a year and not repeat a meal. My favorite is a special with asparagus and eggplant, with "beef" seitans throughout; absolutely delicious! The portions are huge; I always have another meal to take home, the servings are so large. Grasshopper is inexpensive, great for the students nearby, and very willing to make substitutions within the printed menu. It is a wonderful restaurant! We tell everybody about Grasshopper.
I tried Grasshopper for the first time this week with my daughter and we loved it. The menu was pretty overwhelming with dozens of choices and not very descriptive. After looking at the menu for awhile we surrendered and asked the waitress what was best, and she recommended the no-name and the spicy steak fillet. We ordered both of those and the spring rolls. The spring rolls were average, but everything else was terrific. Portions were huge and neither of us were able to finish it all. The no-name is a great choice for carnivores- it looks and tastes like sweet & sour chicken. The Spicy Steak Fillets are thinly sliced tofu fillets with a black bean sauce over steamed spinach, red bell peppers and onions. It was very good- nice texture and spicy flavor.
I ate at Grasshopper twice while visiting Boston and I wish it was here so I could eat there often! The food was not only all vegan and tasty but they also have one of the most extensive & varied menu's that I've seen. It is also just a few steps away from the Peace O' Pie vegan pizzeria which is also great!
The food is relatively fast and the portions are large enough to share. On their menu, I tried the kale and mushroom, the nest, and some of my friend's no-name, all of which were yum. Kale and mushroom is some savory mushrooms on a large bed of steamed kale and is nice and healthy and good. The nest is taro strips that have been woven into a bird's nest shaped bowl and fried, and filled with various vegetables. If you haven't tried it before, you should, because it's interesting. It's not the first time I've had bird's nest at a Chinese restaurant, but Grasshopper's is pretty good. The no-name is basically General Tso's chicken, without the chicken. That's was really good too.
Reliably good vegan fare, I've been coming here for years. There's a good variety on the menu, decent prices, and the staff is friendly. They also host interesting speaking events and put on cheap buffets every third Sunday or so, awesome! One odd thing, they have a large fish tank... never quite got that, but the fishies seem content enough. Check it out, for sure!
Grasshopper has a huge menu, generous portions and very quick service. Our family likes the "no name". The seaweed salad is very good too.
Well, this was my first venture to a restaurant on my own and I picked the right place! I was enthralled with the prospect of the restaurant serving only vegan food. No more worrying about potential animal byproducts sneaking in!
I was seated immediately and my food arrived shortly after I order it. I got The Grasshopper Supreme, well worth the $13. It was a HUGE plate LOADED with veggies in a delicious sauce; no idea what kind it was though. I then ordered a slice of vegan cheesecake with blueberry compote. Well, that was less satisfactory than my meal had been. The number one dessert I loved pre-Vegan was cheesecake and, unfortunately, this didn't meet my high cheesecake standards. The compote was also a little too thick (too much added sugar?).
Overall, I had a great experience. Loved the atmosphere and, for the most part, the food. Would definitely go back again.
It took me three years and a number of attempts before I managed to find Grasshopper last year. If you are taking the T from the centre of town, you need to take the Green B line to Allston Street, and go right, heading to the end of Allston Street. You then turn left and the restaurant is on the right, past the fire station.
This year, I visited twice. Once for lunch with my partner, and once on my own for the monthly Sunday buffet.
The lunch menu was good value, though the sauces were a little too thin.
The Sunday buffet usually only happens once a month, and is excellent value. The choice of entrees is not that varied, but there are two soups and a good number of appetizers. There are three entrees, but two of them are pretty much the same thing. The buffet can get quite busy and attracts a wildly diverse crowd. If you are on your own, you will end up sharing a table.
The food is okay, but not significantly different than My Thai Vegan Cafe. My partner notes that Grasshopper's Chinese hot and sour soup is nowhere near as good as that at My Thai. The difficulty of getting to Grasshopper is also a minus point.
Grasshopper is frequently cited as the best vegan/vegetarian food in the Boston area. I'm sure for people who've never had vegan Chinese or Thai before, it's amazing. For those of us who have, however, it's just average. My Thai in Brookline is much, much better, and My Thai also beats Grasshopper in the vegan dessert department, hands down.
That said, if you are vegan, your choices are limited around here, and Grasshopper is a fine choice. The service is good, the menu is extensive, and it's just by TJ Scallywaggles, a vegan pizza joint (see Boston listings), which is convenient. It's just that Grasshopper is not as great as people say it is.
The Grasshopper is awesome, everything is great. That is the first time I have seen vegan seafood like that. The No Name is fantastic. This is the first 100% restaurant I ever went to and it was amazing to be able to order ANYTHING ON THE MENU for the first time as a vegan.
I have eaten here a dozen or so times and usually make it a point to stop by whenever I am in Boston. The No Name is my favorite dish!
Man, I ate here often. Too often. Reading about the MSG today certainly helps explain my addiction. Additionally, many dishes use quite a lot of sugar. All of this helped to make the food very friendly to non-veggies I took here... that said, I'd often feel pretty queasy the "morning after" eating here (a veggie friend shared the same feeling and elected to stop eating here on his own). Had I known at the time to skip the MSG I probably would have been in a better place. That said, I did prefer this place to the Buddha's Delight restaurants (though the wonton soup was better at BD); sure, I ate all the famous sugary dishes here (chicken fingers, no-name, sweet&sour everything), but also great was the kale & garlic, and all of the appetizers (esp. the hot appetizer sampler plate, as well as the omelette-like veggie "pizza"). Loved the brown rice here, too... very friendly staff... The place is a bit small and dark, but comfortable enough; part of the attraction is that the place is always packed with a cool selection of veggie & veggie-friendly folks & students.
A couple of doors down in a place specializing in vegan "comfort food," which I enjoyed a few times before moving out of the area last year. Can't recall the name...
We went here based on the reviews I found on Happy Cow and yikes -- what a disappointment! I ordered the no name, which was good, but I wasn't prepared for the greasy food that came out. My dining partner got a tofu dish that was not good at all and yes, the no name is good, but I can't imagine craving that dish and having to return on a regular basis. The restaurant is gloomy, dirty, and the service was unimpressive.
this place is the most popular veg place in boston. the menu is extensive, the service is off the wall fast, and the one woman who is almost always the waiter should win an award for the worlds best memory... i have seen her take appetizer, dinner and drink orders from 8 people without a blink of the eye or writing anything down. she sometimes forgets a little thing, but its very impressive. some of the dishes are quite normal but the key about grasshopper is totally getting one of the 'specials' a lot of people swear by the 'no-name' but i prefer the 'sweet and sour sensation' if you want to try both... just get the 'happy family'! be warned though... these portions for the specials are insane... you would have to be a very big appetite person who is very hungry to finish these (which is me) but i usually split it with a friend (almost everyone splits the specials with a friend, dont feel wierd for odering one meal for two people here!) but if you do split a meal definatly dabble in some appetizers, i recoment the seaweed salad (one of the best i have had) or the beloved CHICKEN FINGERS (a good deal for the portion and price as an appetizer). you can also get the chicken fingers as a meal (the 'sweet and sour tofu chicken fingers' #77) and that rules too. there is also cheesecake for dessert!
oh and for the benefit of visitors to boston, this should definatly be listed as boston, its only like 100 feet from the line of boston proper and not many visitors would know that allston is part of boston.
I absolutely love this restaurant. The staff is friendly and the menu is expensive. My favorite dishes are No Name, Grasshopper Supreme, Yellow Bean Cakes.
When I was leaving for LA they gave me a complementary smoothie and slice of pie. You cannot be service like that!
I've taken at least 10 omni's there and they always sang its praises! Best vegan spot in the North East!
The food at Grasshopper is okay, but you can make the same type of dishes at home pretty easily for much less. Although it is marketed as a more "upscale" establishment, I still prefer Buddha's Delight in Chinatown. Buddha's is cheaper, their portions are bigger, and the food is nearly the same. The waitstaff are very nice at Grasshopper, though. I will never understand, however, why the Grasshopper folks hang up restaurant reviews in their window that have both good comments and TERRIBLE comments listed on them! Also, once my order was a little messed up (I think because of the language barrier). Overall, an okay spot.
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Last updated: 2013/07/10
Added by: Guest