A great pan-Asian buffet that is sentimental to me
Posted on 04 / 04 / 2013
So, like, when I was a kid growing up in King of Prussia, I worked one summer at my father's office in Malvern, and I was, at that time, having my first dabble into being vegetarian. For lunch, we'd often go to Subway and I'd get their veggie burger (they had those at Subway then), which were not vegan, and at that time, I really had no concept of what vegan was or that it was actually possible to be one.
And then my dad took me to SuTao. It was the first vegan food I ever consciously ate, and it was the best meal I'd ever had. I couldn't believe it. Here was this buffet with veggie meats that tasted and felt so much like animal meat that it actually scared me. I was legitimately afraid it was actually animals. But my father assured me that it was "wheat meat" (that's what people called seitan at that time) and I was as confounded by this as the time I was 5 and my dad pulled a chord from the phone to the computer and then told me he was typing to his friend Peter. How was Peter in our computer? And how did this food made from the same thing as bread taste and feel so much like chickens' meat? A few years later, the answer to these questions became clear to me, but they're really no less amazing.
When I go to Montgomery County to see the fam, SuTao is still the ultimate pan-Asian vegan buffet. It was a trailblazer in my life and it's still great fun. I imagine all the other young vegetarians in the area being brought there by their parents who are supportive of their new-found vegetarianism and them realizing that vegan food is even better. Way better than some crappy Subway veggie burger. Way better than cheese pizza. Because of SuTao, I always thought of vegans as vegetarians who actually cook really well. Because of SuTao, I never had the insane impression that vegan food was bad food -- rather, it was the best food!
Thank you, SuTao. You fill a happy place in my heart.
buffet, kid-friendly, been around a long time
too much good food to fit into belly